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5 CVC Word Searches – Free Printables!

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Get five free printable CVC word searches, one for each short vowel! Students will learn as they fill in the blanks to complete each of the 10 words using colorful picture clues, then find each hidden word in the word search puzzle!

Graphic with five CVC word searches on a bright green background.

🧑‍🏫 Why We Love It

CVC words are words that follow the consonant, vowel, consonant pattern. They’re the first decodable words children learn to read, and we always want to encourage fun and engaging ways to practice them.

When we gamify learning, students become more motivated and excited about the educational task at hand (just check out our printable spelling board game!).

These 5 CVC word searches are organized by words with the same short vowel (a, e, i, o, u). This allows for targeted practice specific to the vowel sound you are working on with your child.

Five printed CVC word searches laid out with a pencil.

Students are supplied with the beginning letter and a colorful picture as a clue for each word. They must practice writing the middle vowel and final consonant, then move on to finding the word hidden in the puzzle.

👉 Not only does this activity provide focused instruction on short vowel sounds, but also challenges students to isolate final sounds in words as well.

This activity allows ALL children to practice auditory and visual discrimination skills, as well as provide targeted encoding practice. It’s an educational triple whammy!

📝 CVC Words List

The five printed and completed CVC word searches.

Every word search contains 10 CVC words, so if you use all five of the word searches, students will practice spelling, writing, and identifying 50 CVC words in total!

  • A /ă/ words: bag, jam, cab, map, rat, nap, hat, bat, mad, cat.
  • E /ĕ/ words: jet, ten, net, bed, web, pen, leg, hen, wet, pet.
  • I /ĭ/ words: pin, fin, six, lip, pig, wig, pit, dig, sit, fix.
  • O /ŏ/ words: fox, jog, cop, pot, mom, mop, hog, box, bot, hot.
  • U /ŭ/ words: run, tub, cup, pup, rug, sun, fun, bug, cut, nut.

👉 Note: The short /ă/ words were intentionally chosen to include the pure sound of the letter a like ăpple. You will need to work on welded sounds with these word families separately (-all, -am, -an).

ℹ️ Tips & Info

  • These word searches were designed for students in kindergarten and first grade.
  • We recommend students cross off or check off each word as they find it in the puzzle. This provides children with a sense of accomplishment and will help them keep track. With each checkmark, they’re one step closer to success!
  • Need a little help? Use the image above as an answer key!
  • Looking for more CVC practice? Check out our popular CVC Resource Bundle!

More CVC Learning Resources

If you like these worksheets, be sure to check out more of our CVC freebies!

Graphic with CVC Sound Boxes worksheet and printed letter dice with a written description of how to play.
Check out our CVC Words Roll & Read Sound Boxes Activity for even more CVC words practice!

🖨️ Download & Print

We’d love to hear about your experience using these printables! Please leave a comment below or tag us on Instagram @literacylearn.

DOWNLOAD TERMS: All of our resources and printables are designed for personal use only in homes and classrooms. Each teacher must download his or her own copy. To share with others, please use the social share links provided or distribute the link to the blog post so others can download their own copies. Please do not save our files to a shared drive, reproduce our resources on the web, or make photocopies for anyone besides your own students. Your support in this allows us to keep making free resources for everyone! Please see our Creative Credits page for information about the licensed clipart we use. If you have any questions or concerns regarding our terms, please email us. Thank you!


  1. LOVE that they have to write the word first, then find it. Great way to incorporate encoding skills! This is another one I would pay for to get a complete set with additional phonics skills (digraphs, bonus letters, glued sounds). Great worksheets!

    1. Treva,
      Thanks for the helpful feedback! We will definitely take this into consideration as we continue to create quality resources in the future. We’ll be in touch 😉
      Katie and Laura

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