Autumn Break and I am hectically planning all my classes for the next term and trying to avoid the kitchen floor at all costs.
There are tons of ideas on the internet of games to play with reading flashcards, but these are my favourite tried and tested ones that seem to work well and the kids love them. They are also quick, easy and practical.
- BANG: Place all the sight words in a container and have some words saying “BANG” on them. Children select words out of the container, reading them in turns and keeping the card if the word is correct. If you pick up a BANG card you have to put all your cards back into the container.
- POP: Variation of BANG, but using popcorn containers and flashcards that look like popcorn (if you have the time to cut out popcorn shapes…)
- WALK THE PLANK: I laminate cards and lay them out on the floor. Students walk on the words and if they get them wrong, they fall off into the “water” until they can try again. A variation of the game is to walk to the top of the ladder – each time you fall off you have to start again.
- FROGGY FROGGY: The little kids like this one – Lay the words out onto the floor. They ask, “Froggy Froggy, please may I cross your golden river?” and I (The frog…sigh) croak, “Not until you show me the word …” The child shows the word and then crosses the river. Kids then come up with their own suggestions e.g. “Oh powerful lion, please may I cross your scary jungle?”
- MEMORY GAME with the words. Be sure that children read each word when they turn them over.
- DICE GRID: When reviewing lots of words, e.g. 50 of the Dolch Sight Words, divide a large piece of paper into 6 and put piles of words into each section. Children dice and read a word from the corresponding section.
- TIMED reading of words: How many can you read in one minute?
- WORD MEANINGS: When appropriate, I try focus on meanings of words as well. So, for example in a match up/memory game I match words to meanings or words to pictures instead of same words and in Froggy Froggy, I ask children to read the word that means x or ask them to give a sentence with a word before crossing my river.
Don’t be afraid to try these ideas at home when your kids bring home those long lists of sight words to learn!