Category Archives: Workboxes

Stories With Word Tiles

What’s In The Workbox?


We scored at the dollar store recently!  They had magnetic learning packs available for $1.  These are a great fit in our homeschool workboxes.

I bought four different packages. SCORE! These included: long and short vowels, shapes and colors, nouns, and compound words.  Each package comes with over 50 different word tiles and picture tiles.  I put these in our workboxes for hands on learning fun and all the kids enjoy using them.


My son age 10 has dislexia and reading and writing is difficult for him.   But he loves making silly sentences with these tiles.  He is very entertaining.  His assignment was to tell me a short story using the tiles.  So he made a “silly” short story.

Here is his short story he made with the word tiles.  He said I could share it with you.

        The Boy, The Dog, The Frog, And The Popcorn
                                              by John   age 10

        Once up on a time, a boy had a dog, a frog, and some popcorn.

        The frog was green.

        The dog was brown. 

        The popcorn was white.

        The boy was hungry.

        He put yellow butter on the popcorn.

        The green frog ate the yellow popcorn.

        The brown dog played with the green frog who ate the yellow popcorn. 

        The hungry boy has no popcorn.

        The hungry boy has a brown dog and a green frog, but he does not have 
        any white or yellow popcorn.

We had purchased another wonderful word tile set at the dollar store a few years ago that also includes prepositions, verbs, nouns, adjectives, and punctuation marks.  These tiles are not magnetized, but they are made of sturdy hard plastic in bright colors.  My son combined the words from both sets to make the sentences in this short story. He could only make one sentence at a time as there were not enough pieces to make the whole story all at once.  But this was very good practice for story making. 

He does not like to write things down, and becomes easily frustrated with reading and writing.  I help him write by letting him dictate his ideas to me and writing it down for him.  Then he copies again what I have written.   Using these tile manipulatives is a good alternative for him, he can do it independantly, it reinforces his reading and spelling skills, and it can be fun.  However, I still ask him to write too. 


I plan to help him create some paper puppets on a stick to retell his story.  He will be so excited to find this project in his workbox.  I will look for some printouts to color and put these in his workbox with some crayons, glue, scissors, and popsicle sticks.  I will also have him draw out some of his ideas and cut them out and glue onto popsicle sticks.  We will make a theater stage with a box.  We will gather in the living room and put his stage on an end table and he can retell his story with the puppets and a copy of his story beside him.  This should be a lot of fun!


While he was being ever so clever in his story making, the younger children’s workboxes contained yet another product from the dollar store that we have gotten a lot of use out of.  We have a couple of sets of foam puzzles (capital letters, lower case letters, and numbers).  We have used these for learning and quiet play in busy bags on the road as well as in our workboxes at home.  These can be used in so many different applications (tracing, matching, spelling, etc).


You can find all of these wonderful tiles in dollar type stores and dicount stores.  I have also found magnetic letters and numbers in our local grocery store too.  Grand total: all of these hands on learning manipulatives cost $1 each or a total of $8 for all of it.  These are great items that can be used in lots of different ways, and will stand up to years of use by multiple children, in our homeschool. 

What silly sentences or silly short stories do your kids make up?
What do you use in your workboxes to encourage your children to create stories? 

This post will be linked up with:
ABC and 123
Sharing Time
No Time For Flash Cards
Raising Homemakers

Please share.