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Thursday, January 10, 2019


The weather outside might be frightful, but these quick games will be delightful!

Write words on scrap paper and distribute to the children. (Older children could write their own words.) Each child wads up their paper to make a snowball. Divide the class into two teams and have them stand on opposite sides of the room. When the teacher says, “Let it snow!” the children begin throwing snowballs at each other. Before they can throw a snowball back at the other team, they must open the paper and read the word. The game continues until the teacher says, “Freeze.” The children gather the snowballs on their side and count. The side with the least amount wins.

*Adapt the game for math facts, letters, children's names, and other skills.

Johnny Jump Up
You will need a photo album and index cards to make this game. Write words on the index cards and insert them in the plastic sleeves. On several cards draw a stick figure jumping and write, “Johnny jump up!” Randomly insert the Johnny cards in the album. As you
shuffle through the book children read the words. When Johnny appears they all jump up!

Catch and Tell
“Catch and Tell” can be played if you've got a few minutes during transitions, while waiting in the hall, or at the end of the day as a review.  All you will need is a bean bag or small sponge ball to play this game. The teacher says a letter and then tosses the ball to a child. That child must name something that begins with that sound before tossing the ball back to the teacher.

*This game can be adapted for rhyming words, colors, math facts, social studies, and other skills.

Write “BOOM!” with a bright marker or glitter pen on several of the flashcards. As you “flash” through the cards, children identify the information. When “BOOM!” appears, children jump up and shout out “Boom!”

*Change the surprise word for different holidays and seasons. In January use a snowman sticker and write “Brrrr!” The children stand up and pretend to shiver when it appears.

Kids vs. Teacher
Draw a T chart on the board with “Kids” on one side and “Teacher” on the other side. Hold up a flash card. If a child raises her hand and correctly reads the word, she gets a point for the “kids.” If any child shouts out the answer, then the teacher gets a point.

(If children keep talking out of turn, just continue to give points to the teacher. They’ll figure it out!)

Pick Up
Place the flash cards randomly on the floor in the middle of the room.  Divide the class into two teams. Choose one child from each team to come up and play. Call out a word. The first child to pick it up wins a point for their team.

Hint!  Here's an idea for "keeping score."  Cut out two circles from poster board and glue them together. Write “high” on one side and “low” on the other. After playing a game toss the circle. If “high” appears the team with the highest score wins. If “low” comes up the team with the lowest score is the winner.

*If children don’t know the answer when playing games allow them to “phone a friend” (ask a friend) or “ask the audience” (ask the class).