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Classroom Teaching Games

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    Mind Readers

    • This game is ideal for English Language Arts, as it reinforces vocabulary words. The teacher writes a topic on the board that has recently been discussed in class; for example, Greek Mythology, the ocean or dinosaurs. On a sheet of paper, write 10 words that are associated with the topic, keeping it to yourself. Next, ask students to write down as many words as they can think of that would have to do with the given topic. Allow five minutes for this. At the end of the five minutes, read aloud the ten words that are on your list. As you read your list, students circle any matching words on their lists. Ask students to tally up their totals. The student or students with the most matching words wins.

    Go Fishing

    • This game is ideal for reinforcing math and English skills. Prepare fishing rods by tying string with a magnet attached to the end onto a dowel. If you are using this game to foster comprehension of initial digraphs, for example, create fish out of construction paper with pictures of words that contain a specific initial digraph. Use a hole puncher to punch holes in the fish, attaching a paper clip through the hole. The fish are placed on the floor. Create a set of digraphs on index cards. For example, ch, th, gh and ph. One at a time, children draw a card from the digraph pile and use their fishing rods to try to catch a fish that contains a picture of a word that begins with the selected digraph. For instance, if the child pulls a card with ch on it, he should try to catch the fish with a picture of children on it. If the child can't determine what fish to catch, he must skip his turn. The child who catches the most fish wins. The game can be modified to teach rhyming words, onsets and rimes, addition or subtraction. It is ideal for small groups of two to four children.

    Slam Dunk

    • In this game, students practice their basketball skills, as well as subject matter concepts and skills. If you want to reinforce math skills, write down a variety of math problems on individual sheets of paper. Place a garbage can in the front of the classroom. Divide the class into two teams. The teams form two lines. Hold up one of the math problems, asking one of the teams to provide the answer to the problem. If the player answers correctly, she takes the paper, crumples it up and slam dunks it into the garbage can. If the player does not know the answer, the player from the other team is asked to answer the problem. If the first player gets the problem right, the player on the other team is asked to answer the next question. Keep a tally of the team's scores on the chalkboard. The team with the most points at the end of the game wins.

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