Thursday, October 27, 2011

Vocabulary Spelling Game

This is a fun way to practice spelling and vocabulary.

What you need for two players:
A set of small double-sided letter cards for each player
(See how to make them below),
10 vocabulary word definition cards
10 skittles or other candies for each player

How to Play
Divide the definition cards face down in two piles of 5 cards each and place them in front of each player. Each player should also have one set of letter cards in a pile or on a plate next to the definition cards. At the word "Go" the players turn over the top card, silently read the definition, and determine which word it is. Then, they find the letters that will spell that word and put them next to the definition card. When they finish spelling that word they turn over the next card. When they have spelled all the words, they should double check their spelling. Then they get a skittle candy for each one they spelled correctly. If they misspell a word, you can give them a second chance to spell it correctly to get the skittle. Players switch cards and do it again.

To make the letter cards, write each vocabulary word on one side of a strip of cardstock with a space between each letter so you can cut the letters apart. Write the same letters on the other side of the strip so when you cut them apart, the same letter is on the front and back. Then put all the letter cards on a paper plate or in a pile. You can also print them on the computer in this way: Make columns (I used 8 columns). Type each word vertically, one letter per line, with a space between. Add extra letters if you have room. To print the same letters on the other side, you will need to copy and paste each column in the opposite order on the second page. Then cut the letters apart.

This is the vocabulary book we have used.


  1. Would this be appropriate for grade 1?

    1. Yes, this would be appropriate for any grade. You just have to adapt the words you use, and how you do it. For first graders, or beginning spellers, I would simplify it by writing each word on a small envelope or 3-oz cup, and then having the letter cards for just that word in the envelope or card. Then you can have the child pick a card with the description of the word, or you can just call out a word and have them choose the envelope or cup with that word on it. Then they dump out the letter cards and put them in the right order to spell the word. At first, they might need to look at the word written on the outside of the cup or envelope to help them spell it, but then have them look at the word, but turn it around and try to spell it on their own. If you want to add the "race" element to the activity, you would need to give each child their own set of envelopes or cups. For one child, or to eliminate the competitive nature of the activity, you can use a stop watch to have them see how fast they can spell the word rather than try to race against another child.