10 Quick Classroom Games to improve Literacy Skills

A colleague of mine recently shard these 10 great ideas to impove literacy skills in the classroom.  They are simple to play and can be applied to nearly all year levesl.  Enjoy.


Remember that if you are looking for more great free resources and structured guides to teaching all aspects of English especially writing be sure to visit literacyideas.com

Sentence Stretching

Start with a short sentence or group of words.  Pass it around to about 6 people, with the rule that each person must add (a word or a group of words) or change ONE word ( to another word or a group of words) to make the sentence more specific and more interesting.

Rebus writing

Students write sentences or longer texts and substitute drawings for the nouns.

It’s in the bag

Place an object in a bag- make sure the students don’t see it. Students feel the object in the bag and use words to describe how it feels. They take it out and add /alter their adjectives.

Touch and tell

An object is passed around a group of students. Each student suggests an adjective to describe it.


Students provide an adjectival phrase or clause to describe the object

Verb Draw

Students randomly select from a box a picture of an animal, person or objects that move. They brainstornm action verbs for the chosen object.


The students can supply verbs and adverbs

They can supply adjectives or adjectival groups

Hot Seat

Read a text ( this case narrative) and at a particular point stop and ask students to select a character and suggest, for example:

  • What the character  is doing, thinking, feeling ( focus on processes)

Change the meaning- change one word

Students locate and change one word that will alter the meaning of the sentence.

They share their alterations and discuss which part of speech was the most important in changing the meaning.

Locate and classify

Read a text and ask students to write nouns on cards ( red), adjectives (blue), articles on orange. Rearrange words to create different noun groups. Students can also locate verbs ( green card) and adverbs (yellow) . Rearrange all the worsd to create new sentences.


Students can locate adjectival phrases or clauses or adeverbial hrases and write these on other coloured cards.

Grammar toss- Sentence making

Players must throw a 1 before they can begin. The winner is the first person to make a sentence that includes all of the following:

  1. A group of words that tell what or who ( singular)
  2. A group of words that tell when
  3. A verb in the past tense
  4. An adverb telling how
  5. A group of words telling where

They can then rearrange the sentence parts to see how many ways they can make another meaningful sentence. 


Other parts of speech can be used for each number thrown.

Toss and write

Prior to the activity, a cube is prepared. Upon each face of the cube is written a task that requires specific grammar knowledge. For example:

Make a sentence

Make a question

Provide two adjectives

Provide two verbs

Create a noun group ( eg article, adjective/s noun)

Provide a noun and an adverb

Students select a subject ( noun) from a tin. They throw  the cube and  whichever side of the cube faces up is the task they must attempt.


Thanks to Jenna from Wisconsin for sending me this great lesson plan involving maths and smarties.  It has 20 maths problems that will challenge students of all ages involving number, shape, measurement and chance and data.

You can download the lesson plan here.  And best of all when you are done, you get to eat the smarties.


Classic Battleships Game - Great for Maths


Battleships is a great game for teaching students about using co-ordiantes and understanding chance and data.

Give each player a pencil and printout the gameboard which we got from funorama.com The top grid is for your own fleet ("My Ships") and the bottom grid is where you try to locate the other player's fleet ("Their Ships").

First you decide where to place your own fleet within your grid. A fleet is made up of one Aircraft Carrier, one Battleship, one Cruiser, two Destroyers and two Submarines. Each type of ship covers a different number of boxes in the grid, as shown on the print-out, and is drawn vertically or horizontally (not diagonally). Ships cannot occupy the same square.

To place a ship, check how many boxes are covered by the ship (shown to the left of your grid) and then write the first letter of the name of the ship in the boxes it covers. For example, a Cruiser covers three boxes so you would pick any three adjacent boxes and put the letter C in each box. Keep your fleet location secret from your oponent! When each player has marked their fleet on their grid, begin play.

Take turns to “shoot” at your opponents’ fleet by calling out the number of a certain box by its grid location. For example, you could call out "B4" or "D1". Your opponent must say whether the shot is a "miss" or a "hit", and, if it is a "hit", what type of ship it is. You can keep track of what you have shot on your lower grid, and the ships you have sunk by crossing off the ships at the bottom right of your print-out.
Play continues until one player wins by successfully sinking the whole of the other player's fleet.


Engaging Classroom Games for All Grades

By: Rosshalde Pak


Who doesn’t like to play games?  Not only are games fun, interactive, and social, but they're also great tools for learning.


With so many demands placed on educators to always be ‘standards-focused,’ game can seem like more of a distraction than an instructional tool (especially to principals passing by).  I know many teachers who shy away from games completely because they don’t want their principal to walk in and say, “Umm, Mrs. Pak, why are your students playing around instead of learning?”


On the other hand, games add flair and student engagement to more tedious, yet necessary tasks like teaching math facts, grammar rules and vocabulary, reviewing for tests or even completing lab experiments. Adding an element of competition motivates and energizes students.


Here are my nine student-favorite games to use in K-12 classrooms.


All of these games can be played, with varying degree of difficulty, with younger kinders to older high school students.  It’s the subject matter and the materials that are used that make the difference to the students who are playing the games.

Click here to read More

Great Writing and Science Task - Paper Helicopters and Procedural Texts

If you are looking for something fun to spice up your writing sessions that you can do with students of all ages then look no further.  Simply Download this template pack I found on Paper Helicopters from Primary Science and you can choose to fo as little or as  far as you like with the science elements from the planner.

Then get you students to create a procedural text explaining how the paper helicopter works.  If you are looking for somewhere to start with procedural texts then look no further than here.

you kids will find this a fun writing activity and really enjoy the opportunity to do something different.  I hope you enjoy it.

Hundreds of Fun maths Activities - With Solutions

I came across a great collection of challenging maths tasks for students of all ages and ability.  There are literally hundreds to choose from and the best thing is there are also detailed solutions provided too.  Fun Math Facts is located here.

Teaching Mathematics Easily with Maths Is Fun

 Thanks to Scott @ www.mytopten.com.au

Mathisfun.com is a great website dedicated to working through all the steps in solving various mathematical problems. It has fantastic descriptions of all the concepts, from geometry to number and delivers one of the most comprehensive instructional dictionaries for Mathematics that I have seen. Although it lacks in interactive ability, this site is a must for all of your bookmarks.

Check it out now and have your children use it as a personal tool for their mathematical toolbox.

Teaching Length, Mass and Capacity with Teaching Measures


Are you after an interactive and independent learning item for length, mass and capacity? Here it is. Teaching measures has developed this great interactive page with dozens of links to interactive games. Each of the activities has a worksheet to accompany it, so if your looking for reinforcement and practise, this site is it.

Visit Teaching Measures