Phonics Games! - Thank God It's First Grade!

Phonics Games!

I am always on the hunt for new, fun phonics games! Teaching the same phonics patterns and skills over and over can be difficult for both my students and for me as the teacher to try and have students practice these skills without getting bored.

Before we play phonics games, there is always a direct teaching lesson where I explain the phonics rules and sounds and some manipulation of the words as well. Often, I will use letter tiles to build the words and then change out the pattern for a new pattern. I have my students read both real and nonsense words with the pattern I have taught.

It is only after that explicit instruction that I introduce different phonics games. I believe that the game portion is to help students with fluency. When they are learning to read and decode new words, it is only through practice and repetition that students gain the fluency and ability to read the words quickly.

I recently came out with a ton of print and play math games for different skills in the classroom which was designed to help students with the same thing -  fluency! Since creating those games, I knew I wanted to do the same for different phonics patterns so students could have many different options and activities to practice their fluency.

All the games only require dice, crayons, cubes, a paperclip, and a pencil! They are designed for ease! I wanted teachers to be able to quickly print out a game from their computer and teach it so they can get back to efficiently teaching the other students in their classroom. The directions on the games are simple for students to understand and many of the same game-playing concepts are seen throughout all the games.

I have created six games for each of the different phonics skills:
- short vowels (CVC words)
- long vowels with silent e (CVCe words)
- long vowel teams
- consonant blends
- digraphs
- r-controlled vowels

I thought I would take a minute to share some examples of the games.

Short Vowels:
 Roll, Complete, and Color:
In this game students roll the die and they must figure out which word in their column will be complete with the vowel they rolled. The first student to fill in their column wins! This game has two versions. The one shown above has a picture already there (for example f_n with a fan next to it, so students would have to put an a in the middle) and another version without a picture so if a student rolled an "i" they could choose to make the word fin and draw a picture of a fin. I like that it allows for a bit of differentiation!

Long Vowels with Silent e:
 Replace & Race:
In this game students race to be the first to fill their tower. Students roll a die and see if they can put it anywhere in their tower to make a real word. 

Long Vowel Teams:
 Roll, Read, & Draw:
This game has students practicing their understanding of the words they are decoding. Students simply roll 2 dice to find the sum. Then, they read the word aloud to their partner and illustrate to show understanding.

Consonant Blends:
 Roll & Fill:
This game has students reading real and nonsense words. Students roll the die and move their game pieces along the game board. They read the word they land on aloud and determine if it is real or nonsense. If the word is real, they get to write it in their grid. Students race to be the first to fill their grid with real words! There is a gameboard for r-blends (shown above), l-blends, and s-blends.

 Roll, Read & Gather:
In this simple game, students roll a die and find that matching box. That student will read the words in the box and try to find a real word. Once they find one, they can highlight it with their color marker and it is now "their" word. Students continue rolling, reading, and gathering words until all the real words are taken! At the end, students see who gathered the most real words!

R-Controlled Vowels:
 Spin & Find:
Each set of games also has an identification type of game as shown above. In this game, students simply spin the spinner and find a word in the grid that contains that r-controlled vowel. Students can play until all squares are colored then see who colored the most or they can play to be the first the get 5-in-a-row!

If you would like to try a FREE phonics game, just click the image below and download the preview! You can just print and play your game right away!

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