Nine favourite word games and…a Treasure Map.

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The Treasure Map Game: it was a map of our classroom actually where we decided to add….lakes, rivers, hills,forests and made it look like an….island !! How exciting to look for treasure, in our own classroom!!

 

The Treasure Map game

This game is ideal for very young learners. There are variations which have to do with older students of course!

What you will need:

A sheet of paper and a pencil, crayons, something to hide as treasure

Children love games of hide and seek and this is no exception.

How to play:

1.I ask my students to draw the outline of a large , empty treasure island and I do the same on the board to help them do it!

2.I then ask them to fill it with….our classroom  furniture!! My desk, their desks, the bookcase, the bin etc….

3.Then , I tell them to imagine that our classroom has become a treasure island!!

I therefore, offer suggestions of features that they might like to draw on the island. For example, they could draw a sandy cove, a slimy swamp, a watefall, a dark forest, a bottomless lake, caves, cliffs, and mountains- appeal to their sense of adventure!

4.Once the island is complete, I ask one student -using a choosing rhyme- to step out of the classrom for a while.

5.We decide where to hide our “treasure” and use one of our maps to mark the spot with an X.

6.We call the …pirate  in, and tell him/her that they are pirates seeking the treasure.

7.The rest of the class, try to help him/her find the treasure by saying “Hot”, “Warm” or “Cold” each time the pirate approaches a new area.When the pirate reaches the right spot, they shout “GOLD” and I mark the spot with an X on the board map, too for everybody to see!

8.If he succeeds in finding the treasure, all the class pirates are awarded stickers!

The fun element is, our Classroom becomes a…Treasure island! With older learners, we can use prepositions of place (” Is the treasure next to the bookcase” ?)  and set a time limit for the treasure to be found.

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My number one favourite dictation game that works with almost all levels is ” Running Dictation”.

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 Skills: reading, writing and spelling.
How to Play:

mosaic game running dict

Levels:All
Requirements: pen and paper and text excerpts.
General Rules: Divide class into teams. In each team there is a reader and a writer.  Paste texts (usually short text) at the back of the class. Tell each the readers of each team that they will run to a text, read and memorize a part of it. As quickly as possible they will run  back and dictate the text to the writer in their group. The writer writes while s/he goes back to read more text. The group that finishes writing their text first wins.
Runners (readers) cannot write the words. They must dictate what they read in the text to the student writing. They cannot help in the writing but they can tell him/her how to spell words.
The team that finishes first wins and reads out the text to the class.
Tips: Put students of mixed abilities together.

The Apple  Tree  game

Υummy!

Υummy!

Instructions

This is basically a scoring game, and can be used in various different ways.I mainly play it to test new words and  spelling !

1. Put the kids in groups (6 is usually good as there are usually 6 rows of desks), but keep them seated at their desks.

2. Draw pictures of trees on the board, one tree for each group. Each tree has 9 “rungs” (add more or less depending on the amount of time you wish to play), and some apples  at the top. (see the picture above) This takes about 1 minute if you’re quick!

The Cup: another similar game idea!

The Cup: another similar game idea!

4. During the game you play some music (something fast and dancey). When the music plays the kids pass a ball around (no throwing!!).

5. You stop the music.

6. You then ask the person holding the ball a question (“What’s this? How are you? What’s your name? etc.) My variation is spelling new words!

7. If the student gets it right then their team’s animal climbs one rung up the tree!

8. Repeat from step 4 until one team reaches the top – and the apples!

This is good for a review session, or even for practicing new vocab. 9 rungs lasts about 20 minutes. After the first few tries I then ask questions that are worth 2 “rungs”, or even ask the kids if they want an easy question for 1 point or a tricky one for 2 points!!

The Ski game

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Instructions

This is a method of counting how many points teams have in a game.

It’s similar to the Apple Tree game…

1. Draw a “ski track” on the board from right to left. Have several “markers” along the track (eight markers will last about 20 minutes), and a start and finish gate.

2. Have a cut out skier and a cut out snowboarder and place them (using magnets) on the start line.

3. Assign the kids to either ski or snowboard teams. A good way is by starting with the kid at the near left corner of the room and saying “ski”. Then “snowboard” to the next kid, etc.

4. Say “ski team stand up”. Just to make sure everyone remembers what team they’re on!

5 Play something like the Ball and Music game to select a student. Ask them a question.

6. If they are correct the skier or snowboarder moves one space along the track towards the finish.

This is a cool game to play in the winter (its not much good in June!!)

If time is getting short then make each question worth 2 points instead of one.

Grand Prix game

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Instructions

This is a method of counting how many points teams have in a game.

1. Draw a “race track” on the board from right to left. Have two lanes and several “markers” along the track (eight markers will last about 20 minutes).

2. Have two cut out race cars and place them on the start line. The two cars should be two different colours (e.g. red and blue)

3. Assign the kids to either red or blue teams. (A good way is by starting with the kid at the near left corner of the room and saying “you are blue”. Then “You are red” to the next kid, etc.)

4. Say “Red team stand up”. Just to make sure everyone remembers what team they’re on!

5 Play something like the Ball and Music Game or Syllable Game to select a student.

6. If they are correct their car moves one space along the track towards the finish.

This is a fun game, especially if you make racing car zooming noises when the cars move or overtake (or even use a music keyboard if it has the sounds built in!!!!)

If time is getting short then make each question worth 2 points instead of one.

The Last Letter game

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Instructions

This is a great warm up game for older elementary or junior high kids!

1. Split the kids into groups.

2. Start the stopwatch

3. The front person from each group writes a word on the board e.g. “fish”

4. The next person from the group comes up and writes a word that starts with the last letter of the previous word. e.g. if the last word was “fish” the new word could be “hotel” or “house”

5. Repeat from 4

6. When the time is up, see which team has the most words!

It’s great to play some loud music when the kids are doing this game! You could also decide to give 2 marks for longer or cooler words!!

( Similar  games, to be found at http://www.Genkienglish.net)

The Ladder to the Moon game

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Instructions

 

An old time favourite!

1.I draw two ladders on the board, one for each team with several steps each.

2.Assign the kids to either red or blue teams. (A good way is by starting with the kid at the near left corner of the room and saying “you are blue”. Then “You are red” to the next kid, etc.)

3.Say “Red team stand up”. Just to make sure everyone remembers what team they’re on!

4.Two students, one from each team, come to the board  and are asked to write a  word or give  a defintion, on their  first ladder space .

5.  If they are correct they move  one space along the ladder  towards the finish.

5.If one student is not correct, their team miss a turn. If both players are not correct, the next two players proceed!

6.This is good for a review session, or even for practicing new vocab.

The Sun and the Clouds Game

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Instructions

This idea came to me one day we were reading Aesop’s fables , the Sun and the Wind in particular!

In general, I always check vocabulary or spelling using games!

Therefore, I came up with a variation of the games I have already mentioned above : The Sun and the clouds”!

1.I draw about 6-8 clouds on the one side of the board and the same number of Suns on the other.

2.Assign the kids to either Sun  or Cloud  teams

3.I ask a player from each team in turns, to come to the board and write a word they are given, on one of their team Suns or Clouds.

4.   If they are correct they move to the next Sun/Cloud   towards the finish.

5.If one student is not correct, their team miss a turn. If both players are not correct, the next two players proceed!

The Rainbow game

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1.I draw two rainbows on the board, one for each team with several lines each.

2.Assign the kids to either red or blue teams

3.Say “Red team stand up”. Just to make sure everyone remembers what team they’re on!

4.Two students, one from each team, come to the board and are asked to write a word or give a defintion, on their first rainbow space .

5. If they are correct they move one space along the rainbow towards the top.

5.If one student is not correct, their team miss a turn. If both players are not correct, the next two players proceed!

6. When a team reaches to the top of the rainbow, the SUN appears behind it!!

7.This is good for a review session, or even for practicing new vocab., too.

Lose your letters

mosaic woed game

 

This game is ideal for checking new words spelling…

This game requires a keen eye as players cross off letters in as I pull them out of a bog! Each player has a different word and the pressure is on to finish first!

Preparation

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I ask them to write several, 5 letters or more, words on separate pieces of paper, one for each player.The words can feature the same letters more than once.

How to play

I have plastic alphabet letters in an opaque bag .I pick a letter from the bag and call it out.If anyone has the letter in their word, they can cross it off. I shake the bag of letters, and choose a new one.The first player to cross off all of her letters is the winner of a sticker!

You must make sure, you return each letter back to the bag before you call a new letter out! For older learners, I use longer words or even sentences.

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ENJOY!!Because, school IS fun!

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