Something old...something new...I bet you'll find another idea or two!
(Tune: “Muffin Man”)
Oh, look who has the letter bag,
The letter bag, the letter bag.
Oh, look who has the letter bag.
Now please take a letter!
*Fill a bag with letters. When the song stops, have the child holding the bag pull out a letter and identify it.
Letter Shop (Chrissy Johnston)
(Tune: “Five Little Ducks “)
Down around the corner at the “S” shop. (Insert letter you are studying.)
There were all kinds of letters just waiting to be bought.
Along came (child’s name) with a penny in her hand.
She bought a (name object) and away she ran.
*Place objects that begin with the sound in your “store” on a table. Before singing describe an object that begins with the sound for the students to buy.
Decorate a coffee can or Pringles can with construction paper and decorate to look like the “Alphabet Monster.” Cut a hole for the mouth. Lay all the letters (shapes, colors…) on the carpet/table. Say a letter in a silly/goofy monster voice. Have the child search for it, and then feed it to the monster by placing it in his mouth. CHOMP!!
(Tune: “Where Is Thumbkin?”)
All: Where is Sam?
Where is Kim?
Sam and Kim sing: Here we are. Here we are.
All: How are you today?
Sam and Kim: Very well, we thank you.
All: Run around, then switch spots.
(Sam and Kim run in a circle and switch seats.)
Gift Bag Battleship (Donna)
This game is good for oral language and following directions. You will need a gift bag that is the same on both sides, as well as counters. (Erasers from the dollar store work well.) Two students take a bag and face each other. Put a file folder as a barrier between them. One student is the teacher and gives directions for covering up objects on the bag. When all the markers are placed on the bags the folders goes down and the students look to see if both sides match.
*This helps students understand the importance of positional words and the need to be specific with directions. In the beginning you can do this with partners or as a fishbowl for everyone to see.
Peace and Quiet (Maria Bell)
To focus children’s attention say “peace” as you make the peace signal with your two fingers in the air and “quiet” as you put your index finger from the other hand over your lips.
Question of the Day (Maria Bell)
Use a five frame or tens frame to answer the question of the day. As children place their picture in the frame it will help their understanding of tens and ones.
Flip Book (Linda Thomas)
These flip books can be useful for developing oral language, vocabulary, math (sequence, ordinals), and science (life cycle, procedure). Take construction paper and make a hotdog. Cut from the edge to the fold to make equal flaps. Glue items under the flaps in “correct” order. Have children describe their flip books in front of the class.
*The teacher who shared this activity taught in a French immersion school. She said this was a great tool for engaging her students in oral conversation.
Light and Write (Caroline, Tina, Megan)
Use small finger lights from the dollar store to read and write around the room.
Beanie Baby Reading Strategies (Caroline, Tina, Megan)
You can google this to get ideas for helping children decode words using Beanie Babies as clues. “Stretchy Snake” reminds them to stretch out words. “Chunky Money” tells them to look for smaller chunks they can read…
Zap It (Mary Katherine Leighton)
Place sight words on the end of craft sticks. Have a few that say, “Zap it!” Students pull sticks out of the can with friends and say the word. If they get “Zap It!” they have to put all their sticks back in the can. Keep a tally of the score. The fifth stroke is the seatbelt.
*Use for numerals, letters, colors, shapes, etc.
Counting Game (Ellen Raymond)
Children stand in a circle. Determine how to count – 1’s, 2’s, 5’s, 10’s - and pick an ending number. Go around the circle and each child says the next number. The student who says the ending number must sit down. Continue until only one person is left standing.
*Cheer for the winner and for the first person who sits down.
Writing Center (Sarah Risk)
Use a small science board (available at dollar stores) with Velcro dots attached. This way you can easily exchange the word cards based on the subject you are studying. The science board stands easily on a table and gives everyone the opportunity to see the words.
Decorate two lanyard nametags with stickers and jewels. Insert sight words. The teacher and helper wear the word as you sing and spell to “BINGO”:
There was a jazzy word of the day
and like was the word-o.
L-i-k-e, l-i-k-e, l-i-k-e,
Like was the word-o.
Super Cleaner Necklaces (Sarah)
Make 6 necklaces with “Super Cleaner” medals. During clean up time, hand out the necklaces to the students who are “caught” doing a super job leaning up. Have them come to the front of the room and give them a group cheer.