What are CVC words?

CVC is an abbreviation for Consonant-Vowel-Consonant. “Cat,” “cap,” “cup,” “pup” are examples of CVC words.

Why CVC words are important?

CVC words are important to early reading for two reasons: young readers 1) learn short vowel sounds, and 2) learn how to substitute different letters-sounds to make new words. Dr. Seuss’ Hop on Pop uses abundant CVC words such as “cat,” “bat,” “hat,” “sat” or CVCC words such as “ball,” “call,” “fall,” or “tall.”

What are CCVC words?

Consonant, consonant, vowel, consonant words, for example: trap, chop, stun, grit, shop.

What are CVCC words?

Examples of CVCC (consonant, vowel, consonant, consonant) words are: hunt, fast, cart, milk, want.

How children can learn CVC words

Books and apps which present CVC and CVCC words in a repetitive pattern help young readers develop a mastery of sounding out words. Young readers can practice sounding out CVC and CVCC when they read books labeled “Early Reader.” These books use CVC and CVCC words in a repetitive pattern to help readers acquire basic reading skills. Apps, such as “Phonics Read CVC Words” and “Duolingo ABC,” also help with this reading skill. Repetition of CVC words in a story or an app is important to learning how to recognize words readily.

Once young readers learn to decode CVC words, they can manipulate letters to make new words. For instance, they can substitute the 1st consonant: “fit,” “bit,” “sit,” “hit.” They can substitute the middle vowel: “sit,” “set,’ “sat.” Finally, they can substitute the final consonant “sat,” “sad,” “sap.”

If early readers have difficulty with a particular vowel sound, short “e,” for instance, they can make flash cards or a list of CVC words to help them learn that sound. A list for short “e” CVC words might include “pet,”” wet,” “set,” “pen,” “den,” “hen.” Repetition of words with the CVC pattern help early readers store letter-sound correspondences in memory.

When Pre-K and Kindergarten readers, learn to decode CVC and CVCC words, when they work on apps that emphasize these words, when they work at reading Early Reader stories, they build vocabulary. Storing easily recognizable vocabulary words in memory is important for early reading success.

Phonics information for parents

For more information on phonics and how it's used to teach children to read look through our parents' guides, or find phonics apps and phonics games for your child to help them practise early reading at home.