Active Student Learning Games
March 17, 2009
I have a class this year two-thirds of which are very active boys, most of whom are struggling readers, and I had been looking for ways to engage them and boost their progress. When I noticed how much they loved playing the game Twister, I decided to use that to my advantage. I created several homemade Twister games using shower curtain liners. I made up several versions, such as
- Short Vowel Twister,
- Long Vowel Twister,
- Parts of Speech Twister,
These games help students to identify and classify phonics rules. I ask them to place their hands or feet on a picture that fits a certain category. For example, they may be asked to put their right hand on a short e picture.
My students were so enthused about this game that I also use it to help them to classify parts of speech and science vocabulary (carnivores/herbivores/omnivores). I also developed Sight Word Hopscotch (also using a shower curtain liner), in which students jump on squares with sight words instead of numbers. I change the sight words each week as the students master them. I also use an adaptation of Chinese Jump Rope, during which students read a fluency phrase as they complete each jump. All of these activities not only incorporate active movement into students' learning, but also help students learn directionality and following directions skills.