January 2009



These games can be adapted for any skill you want to reinforce. Shapes, colors, children’s names, letters, numerals, words, phrase cards, math facts, etc. can all be used.

Take advantage of all the little “teachable times” in your school day. Keep flash cards handy and play one of these games when you have a few extra minutes before lunch, as children wash hands, or while waiting for the bell to ring.

Focus on having fun and learning! If children don’t know the answer, let them “phone a friend” or “ask the audience”

Hint! Make flash cards from circles (paper plates work well) rather than rectangles. The circle tends to pull the eyes to the middle rather than the corners.


Write “BOOM!” with a bright marker or glitter 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 example:, you might want to use a turkey sticker and write “Gobble, Gobble” in November. You could also write “GRRRRR!” and have children stand up and stomp like dinosaurs, or draw stars and have them stand up and twinkle like stars.


Draw a score card 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 her team. 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!)


Arrange flash cards in a pocket chart or on the floor. Tell the children to close their eyes as you hide a sticker behind one of the flash cards. “Who knows where the sticker is hidden?” One at a time children identify the word or other information on a flash card and turn it over. The first child to find the sticker gets to be “teacher” and hides the sticker again.

• Change this game each month with a different seasonal sticker.

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