Close this search box.

Spelling Lists for First Grade

Spelling patterns and word family lists are the ultimate time-saving resource that you’ve been missing in your first grade classroom!

Have you been looking for an easier way to manage your spelling/word work station during guided reading stations?

Do you ever get stuck in the middle of a lesson trying to generate words that have a certain spelling or word family pattern? 

Do you have students that would benefit from visually seeing a list of rhyming words?

You will save time and sanity by keeping these lists handy in your first grade classroom because they provide a full list of spelling patterns and word families. 

Use them during whole group spelling/phonics lessons, small group intervention for word building and also in your word work/spelling station during guided reading.

Even better, spelling lists can be made for ALL spelling patterns and word families taught in first grade. 

In this post, we will cover: 

  1. What can you do with a spelling list in first grade?
  2. Teacher tips about spelling lists
  3. Station ideas to use with spelling lists
  4. How to make spelling lists work for ALL your learners
  5. Benefits of a spelling list station in first grade

Disclaimer: this post includes a product that I created, but EVERYTHING in the post is something that you can make on your own!

What Can You Do With a Spelling List in First Grade?

Spelling and word family lists can be used in a variety of ways:

•Spelling Station to spell the word pattern of the week. This means I only change out the spelling or word family list each week and the activities can stay the same! Super low-maintenance!

•As a “go to” list for teachers when generating word families whole group phonics/spelling instruction 

•A list of words for teachers to review during small group warm ups for guided reading or interventions (make flashcards, build words, manipulate phonemes with plastic letters, etc.)

•A list of words for families to practice reading and writing

Again, this is not anything that you have to buy. You can simply type up a list of spelling words or spelling pattern words and put it in your station.

Teacher Tips about Spelling Lists

  • I laminated my lists for durability from year to year, but you don't even have to take that step if you don't want to.
  • I used a different color of paper for each week. This made it very easy to make sure my long a lists didn't get mixed up with the long i lists. 
  • I had four copies of each list set out each week because I typically had 3-4 students visit that station at a time and I did not want them to have to share. 
  • I've also done it where I had a month's worth of lists connected with a binder ring which mean even less prep on my part, but the disadvantage of this was that students would often end up on the wrong list!
  • You could have all students share one list if you wanted to, or you could leave that list posted somewhere in your classroom.

There is no right or wrong way to use a spelling list as a station!

First Grade Stations with Spelling Lists

Setting up a year long, self-sustaining station using spelling lists is super easy!

To use, students must:

  1. Get their spelling list
  2. Build words off of the list using supplies/materials at the spelling station

What makes this system great is that you never have to change out the materials, you only have to change out the spelling list!

Supplies at the spelling station can include:

  • magnetic  letters
  • letter beads and pipe cleaners
  • sand and q-tips
  • reusable ice cubes
  • stamps and ink
  • stamps and playdough
  • hangman boards
  • dry erase boards
  • magnadoodle boards
  • keyboard for typing
P.S. Plastic pencil boxes make for GREAT Spelling Station storage boxes! 

A Spelling Station that works for ALL First Graders

Here's How to Differentiate:
What do you want students to do AFTER they build the word? 
For struggling students, simply building the word is probably enough of a challenge.
For students who need more of a challenge out of their spelling station, I have them write their words on a recording sheet. 
By recording sheet, I really mean just a blank sheet of paper. 
If I REALLY want to challenge them, I make them write complete sentences with their words OR see how many of those words they can write in one sentence and still have it make sense!

Benefits of a Spelling List Station in First Grade

The point is, your spelling station is open to a WIDE RANGE of possibilities when you aren't limited to a set of worksheets. 

Your students will greatly benefit from the hands on practice of building words with so many different manipulatives. 

YOU will greatly benefit from the amount of planning and prep time you are cutting out by having a consistent spelling station that only requires you to change out a list each week/month.

First Grade Spelling Lists

All of the spelling lists seen in this post can be found HERE:

More First Grade Phonics and Writing Favorites

Spelling List Blog Post - Kristen Sullins Teaching

sign up for free stuff

Sign up to receive weekly emails with tips, free resources and info about upcoming sales.

Kristen Sullins

Kristen Sullins

I am a current Elementary Librarian and
Enrichment Teacher, mother of two, follower of Christ and Texas native. In my own classroom, I love to save time by finding unique ways to integrate writing, social studies and science into all parts of my day. I also love all things organization!