It's word work for Big Kids when you Build a Mystery Word! This set is a great way to get your students active. Kids manipulate letters to create new words, while still spending time thinking critically, using sentence level context clues, and exploring phonetic patterns. Upper Elementary kiddos still need manipulatives, particularly when exploring the patterns letters use in the English language. This set integrates many ELA skills in Word Work, yet is still a challenge for the third and fourth graders in your class!

This is included in the Build a Mystery Word Bundle!

Teaching Tip:
Demonstrate this activity as a class so you can teach students your expectations, as the tasks remain the same throughout the year. The first task always asks students to cut out the letters and create as many words as possible. The second task requires students to use context clues. Make sure you have student dictionaries available for the third task! For the fourth task, students use their critical thinking skills to pick another letter to add to the collection, and challenges them to create new words based including the new letter.

Suggestions for use:
These can be used for Work on Words activities during Daily 5, bell-ringer work as students arrive/depart, or as an extension activity for early finishers. This activity can easily be led by a volunteer or paraprofessional, if needed. As always, I appreciate your comments, feedback, and support! If you have additional questions about this product, please feel free to contact me.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.4.A - Use sentence-level context as a clue to the meaning of a word or phrase.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.4.C - Consult reference materials (e.g., dictionaries, glossaries, thesauruses), both print and digital, to find the pronunciation and determine or clarify the precise meaning of key words and phrases.

What is included:

Cover/Table of Contents, pages 1-2
A Note From Jen, page 3
orchestra, pages 4-5
kitchen, pages 6-7
weather, pages 8-9
hibernate, pages 10-11
slithered, pages 12-13
basketball, pages 14-15
butterflies, pages 16-17
feathers, pages 18-19
breathing, pages 20-21
fossil, pages 22-23
Answer Keys, pages 24-25
Credits/Terms of Use, page 26


  • 3rd
  • 4th
  • Build a Mystery Word
  • Mystery Words
  • Word Work