Spelling Word Search Puzzles ~ Made by Your Child!

Spelling Word Search Puzzles - Made by YOUR Child~ | This Reading Mama

I’m always trying to find or think of different ways for my 2nd grade reader and speller to interact with his words so he has multiple and meaningful exposure with them. While reading and spelling words in the context of reading or writing should be a child’s main diet, practicing words out of context in fun and hands-on ways is a great way to build fluency and zero in on spelling patterns and/or tricky words (like I talk about in my spelling ebook, Teaching Kids to Spell.)

Just recently, I made a blank spelling word search puzzles for my son. Why was it blank? Because HE made the puzzles. My favorite thing about these spelling word search puzzles is that he (not I) was doing all the work. And when kids do the work in fun ways, THEY benefit from all the learning.


How to Make a Spelling Word Search Puzzles

This is SO simple. I promise! It takes about 1 minute to prep and the rest of the work belongs to the child.

1- Simply print off the blank puzzle of your choice. On the FREE download (at the end of this post) you’ll find a smaller grid for 8 words and larger one for 12 words, making this an appropriate activity for kids K-5.

writing spelling words for his puzzle
2- Ask your child to write his spelling words on the lines at the bottom of the puzzle. These will eventually be hidden in the puzzle by your child. If you have a list of spelling words each week, ask him to use those. My son had 6 new words and then I asked him to pick 6 more from his portable manila “word wall” folder (as seen in the photo above).


writing spelling words in the word search puzzle

3- Once all his words have been written below, ask him to hide them in the blank grid. He can make the puzzle as difficult or as easy as he wants. Once all the words are hidden, he fills in the rest of the grid with letters. He can make this part as tricky or as easy as he’d like as well.


finding spelling words in the puzzle

4- Mama (or dad/adult in the home) tries to find all the hidden spelling words. He found such joy in the fact that it took me a few minutes to find two of his words. If you use this activity in a classroom setting, ask kids to switch puzzles for some spelling practice. I’d even use it for a spelling center that YOU DON’T HAVE TO PREP! Gotta love that!


More Spelling Resources for Kids:

teaching kids to spell by Becky Spence

Follow This Reading Mama’s board Sight Words on Pinterest.

Follow This Reading Mama’s board Word Study/Phonics on Pinterest.


Download the blank word search grids HERE!



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  1. I tell you what! I get so much out of your posts/ideas! Thank you so very much for sharing your wonderful work, giving us fun learning activities to supplement our mundane school work at home. My children will love this activity.

  2. I LOVE this idea! Thank you! I will be using it with second graders in the classroom.

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