Play a St. Patrick’s Day-themed word work game with your beginning readers. This free spinner game is perfect for guided reading groups.
This is one of fourteen freebies I recommend for St. Patrick’s Day in kindergarten.
It’s important for kindergarten students to be able to substitute individual sounds of simple one-syllable words. This activity will help your students practice that.
Let me show you how to play it and list what you need to pull it together.
How to play
Students pick a golden coin word card and write the word on their leprechaun pot.
Then they spin the lucky spinner and erases one letter of the word – the first letter, the vowel or the last letter – depending upon where the spinner landed.
Then the student writes an appropriate letter from the alphabet to substitute.
They sound out the new word.
How to do points
Students could just keep track of their new words they make using the included “words I made today” card or give themself a “point” in the ten frame after they’ve read each new word aloud correctly. That part is up to you.
However, to make it more of a game I suggest using the ten frame at the top or the “words I made today” card as a way to track points for real and nonsense words.
Draw a dot for each point.
Students earn one point for making a new word that is nonsense (wid, bur, pol, etc.) but they earn two points for making a real word!
See how excited they get when they start to realize they can pick smart alphabet letters to make real words and earn more points.
Each student then adds up their points when time is up.
What you need
In order to play this game, you’ll need a few supplies. You probably already have them on hand.
- copier paper or construction paper
- dry-erase markers
- laminate or plastic sheet protector sleeves
How to prep this game
Print the writing piece (leprechaun pot outline) and either laminate or slip it into a plastic sheet protector sleeve.
Push a brad through a paperclip and through the center of the spinner card (there are both small and spinner cards available). Close the brad and adjust so the spinner spins smoothly when you flick it.
Print a set of the word cards on thick paper (like construction paper) so you don’t need to laminate them.
If you plan to use this game for a small group, I think it’s easiest to make colored sets.
To make a set you print off a writing piece (leprechaun pot outline) and set of word cards for each student on one color construction paper. That way everything for student A is on one color and everything for student B is on another (and so on).
It makes clean-up and tracking game pieces super simple.
How to store this game
Use a gallon-size Ziploc bag to put all of your game pieces into. Easy peasy.
Or, if you make colored sets, slide each set’s pieces into the plastic protector sleeve and store all sets together in a gallon Ziploc bag.
I liked to store my guided reading activities, like this one, in my filing cabinets.
This free St. Patrick’s day game is based on Kathy’s Pot o’ Words game that I used in my own classroom and loved. I used it with students who were reading level 3/4 (C/D) books in guided reading groups.
This version I made has been tweaked to support kindergarten students with more visuals.
This free download includes a writing page, full-page spinner, quarter-size spinner, 20 golden coin word cards, 12 blank word cards and a “Today I made these words” card for students to take home.
Let’s wrap it up
Since it is important for kindergarten students to be able to substitute individual sounds in CVC words, this activity will help yours work on that.
If you’re interested in more fun St. Patrick’s Day things for kindergarten, then I suggest you check out 14 St. Patrick’s Day Freebies for Kindergarten next.
But you don’t have to save this game for St. Patrick’s Day! This free spinner game will work anytime your reading groups are ready for it.
Read more: >> 4 Easy-to-use ‘spin and change’ games >>
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