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Saturday, September 6, 2014


Take some of the traditional games you play and turn them into a learning opportunity with these ideas.

Hot Potato 

Children sit on the floor in a circle.  The teacher passes a beanbag to one student and they continue passing the ball around the circle as the teacher plays music.  When the music stops, the child holding the beanbag has to identify the information on the flashcard.  (Allow them to "phone a friend" if they need help with the answer.)

*Adapt this game out on the playground by having children stand in a circle.  Pass a ball and blow a whistle to stop the ball.

Musical Words
Place words on the floor. Put on some music and encourage the children to dance around. When the music stops each child picks up a word and reads it quietly. The teacher points to several children to read their word aloud. Continue dancing and reading.

Red Rover 
Divide the class into two teams facing each other on opposite sides of the room. One team at a time calls for a word from the other team. For example, “Red rover, red rover, send ‘talk’ right over.” You can also ask the child holding the word to gallop, hop, jump, tiptoe, or make another movement as they cross the floor.

Kings and Queens
Line up 6 chairs. Choose 6 girls (queens) to sit in the chairs and 6 boys (kings) to stand behind the chairs. (The rest of the class is the audience.) The teacher holds up a flashcard in front of the first girl and boy. If the boy guesses first he gets to sit in the chair and the girl stands behind him. Continue several rounds with the first 12 children. Then the audience changes places and becomes the new kings and queens.

Around the World
Place chairs in a circle or have students sit on the floor in a circle. One child is chosen to be “it” and go around the world. “It” stands behind the first child. The teacher shows a flashcard. If “it” guesses correctly first they continue “around the world.” If the child sitting guesses first they become the new “it” and travel around the world.

Sentence Makers
Pass out words to children. Think of a sentence using the words. Call out one word at a time and have that child place her word on the floor. Read the sentence together. To vary the game, let one child at a time place words on the floor as they try to create a sentence.

Heads Up Seven Up 

Seven children come to the front of the room and are given a paper plate with a word or whatever on it. The rest of the class places their heads down. The seven tiptoe around and place a plate by a friend before returning to the front of the room. The seven join in and say, “Heads up! Seven up!” Children who received a plate stand up and read their word. They then guess who gave them the plate and switch places.