Word families (phonograms)

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Here is a list of rimes to use in word family activities. For each rime, there is a link to www.wordlistgenerator.net that will automatically generate a list of words ending with that rime. You can click a link on the word list page to create a printer-friendly page that you can paste onto 3x5 index cards. (Note that the word list generator gives all words in its database with the specified ending, so that occasionally you will need to discard a suggestion such as eight as an -ight word and oink as an -ink word.)

The original list from Wylie and Durrell (1970) identified 37 high-frequency English spelling patterns, or phonograms. We narrowed that list slightly by including only the irregular patterns, since students need more practice at these than regular rimes such as -at and -op.

Rimes are listed in alphabetical order, though that is not the order they should be taught in. It is better to begin with rimes that are highly differentiated (such as -ack and -ore) so that students get the idea. Later, you can teach similar rimes in the same lesson (such as -ail and -ain) to ensure that students can detect small differences.


  1. -ack as in back. Click here for a list of -ack words.
  2. -ail as in snail. Click here for a list of -ail words.
  3. -ain as in rain. Click here for a list of -ain words.
  4. -ake as in cake. Click here for a list of -ake words.
  5. -ale as in whale. Click here for a list of -ale words.
  6. -ame as in game. Click here for a list of -ame words.
  7. -ank as in sank. Click here for a list of -ank words.
  8. -ash as in trash. Click here for a list of -ash words.
  9. -ate as in plate. Click here for a list of -ate words.
  10. -aw as in saw. Click here for a list of -aw words.
  11. -ay as in say. Click here for a list of -ay words.
  12. -eed as in seed. Click here for a list of -eed words.
  13. -ell as in bell. Click here for a list of -ell words.
  14. -est as in best. Click here for a list of -est words.
  15. -ew as in few. Click here for a list of -ew words.
  16. -ide as in hide. Click here for a list of -ide words.
  17. -ick as in kick. Click here for a list of -ick words.
  18. -ight as in light. Click here for a list of -ight words.
  19. -ill as in fill. Click here for a list of -ill words.
  20. -ine as in nine. Click here for a list of -ine words.
  21. -ing as in sing. Click here for a list of -ing words.
  22. -ink as in wink. Click here for a list of -ink words.
  23. -ock as in clock. Click here for a list of -ock words.
  24. -oke as in joke. Click here for a list of -oke words.
  25. -ook as in book. Click here for a list of -ook words.
  26. -ore as in more. Click here for a list of -ore words.
  27. -uck as in duck. Click here for a list of -uck words.
  28. -ump as in jump. Click here for a list of -ump words.
  29. -unk as in skunk. Click here for a list of -unk words.


For a more focused list of phonograms based on research into their frequency of occurrence and regularity, see Super Word Families.