For many students, reading is a fun and enjoyable time where they can learn new things and build on their strengths. But for many other students, reading is a dreaded time. This is especially true if the student has a weakness or disability in the area of reading. It’s hard to make reading fun for them. One way to help with that is to incorporate some simple games into reading time.
My absolute favorite reading game is actually Blurt. Blurt is a simple pack of cards with clues on each card. Someone (either the teacher or a student) must read the clue aloud, while others shout out the vocabulary word that matches the clue. For example, a student might right the clue: “A strap of leather or other material going around someone’s waist to hold pants up”. Then, a student would shout out, “belt!”. While it is a very simple (and cheap) game, it is a great way to increase reading motivation while increasing vocabulary skills. Some versions come with a gameboard and all, but I actually just use the travel version with just the cards. Kids can play in partners, as a group, or “around the world” style. Best of all, the students see this activity as a reward rather than a daunting reading task.
Another favorite is Konexi, which is a mix between Jenga and Scrabble. Kids will end up building a tower by connecting letters that fit together like puzzle pieces. The letters will connect together to spell words. Eventually, the tower will fall down (and you know that is always fun).
Some other reading games you might want to try out are scrabble, boggle, and bananagrams. Of course, there are so many apps for word games, too. Some fun (and free) apps include Scramble with Friends and Words with Friends. You don’t have to use games everyday, but they are a great way to help make reading time a fun time.