Use these free and customizable Halloween-themed word mapping PDF worksheets to practice phoneme-grapheme mapping in a fun, spooky way! Using gravestones or ghosts, kids will map and spell words with 3, 4, or 5 phonemes. They’re both engaging AND effective for young readers and writers!
Why We Love It
We love a good holiday-themed activity, but it’s even better when you can bring in something research-based as a best practice for effective literacy instruction.
And these 6 printables are just that! The Halloween worksheets allow kids to practice word mapping words with 3, 4, or 5 phonemes using ghost and tombstone graphics.
They’re similar to Elkonin Boxes (which have many benefits!) and require children to segment and map the sounds they hear in words. Ultimately, repeating this orthographic mapping process enables the brain to permanently store words for quick and instant retrieval.
These sheets can be easily differentiated based on your student’s levels and what phonics skill they’re working on.
This makes them totally customizable! You can even distribute the different sheets to different kids at the same time, giving each child their own set of words to map and spell
Using the Worksheets
Follow the procedure below for effective word mapping. Remember, this is the process by which words become stored as automatic sight words, so it’s important to follow each step.
- The teacher dictates a word with the phonics skill the student is working on.
- The child repeats the word, then taps the ghosts/tombstone as they say each phoneme in the word.
Note: You can easily substitute tapping here and use some of the multisensory ideas listed below.
- The student picks up his or her pencil and writes each grapheme in the ghost/headstone space.
- The student checks each sound in the ghost/headstone, ensuring every sound is represented with the grapheme.
- Last, the child rewrites the word on the line provided, using proper letter formation.
Make It Multisensory
Before your students write the graphemes in each box, allow them to engage in hands-on learning.
Since it’s Halloween, use something with a Halloween theme for extra engagement:
👻 Orange and black playdough rolled into balls can be pushed down as kids say each sound.
👻 Halloween erasers from the dollar store can be placed on the worksheet and tapped as students say each sound.
👻 Give kids a few pieces of candy corn to push up as they say the sounds.
Tips & Info
- These worksheets are perfect for kids grades 1-3.
- Use our word lists to practice orthographic mapping for the most effective literacy instruction. Whether you’re focusing on CVC words, Magic E words, or R-controlled words, we have the perfect printable word lists for you!
- Place these Halloween worksheets in reusable sleeves and use dry-erase markers to save paper!
- If you’re new to the Science of Reading (SOR), we recommend you start by learning more about why orthographic mapping is important and how orthographic mapping affects learning.
- I Spy Halloween
- Spelling Tic Tac Toe
- Thanksgiving Word Mapping Worksheets
- Decodable Sentences with Digraphs
- Spelling Practice Game
Download & Print
We’d love to hear about your experience using this resource, and we value your feedback!
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