Get Your Students Engaged {Fun and Meaningful Games}

I can't even tell y'all how excited I am to be part of this amazing bright ideas blog hop again! I got so many great ideas last hop, and I can't wait to read all the ideas from this hop!
Today I want to share some ways I get my kids up, moving, and most importantly, engaged! Student engagement is huge at my school, as I'm sure it is at yours, and in kindergarten a great way to achieve 100% student engagement is with academic games!
Everyday, we start our math time with a quick game. Usually, we do one, but if time allows {and I give in to my kids begging ;)}, we do a few. One that I love is giving everyone a number and seeing how quickly they can line up in number order WITHOUT talking. Now notice, these numbers are super simple - cut cardstock in half and write the numbers! Sometimes we line up 1-18, and other times I split them into groups so that they have to figure out who has the first number and count on.



 {I love how they "guide" each other to the right place!}

Another one of our favorite games is called Cluck, Cluck Chicken. My friend Deeanna introduced me to it and the kids love it! The only real way to show you how we play is to show you a video, but you have to promise not to make fun of my horrible accent {I also apologize for the blurriness - I had the wrong lens and didn't realize it}!! The kids get in a circle, I call out a number, and they cluck until they make a group with that many kids. The whole scene is comical, but I never intervene! I make them do the problem solving! This would be a great way to introduce division to older kids.

Last, I started giving my kids plus and equal signs last week with their numbers. They work in groups to figure out how to make themselves into a correct equation. Most of the time, when we do this, I have a couple of kids left over and they act as "fact checkers." This is a challenge for my kids at first, but it gets easier and easier and really helps with fluency. Again, a no cost game! How much easier can it get? 




Although these games are math centered, you can easily adapt them to ELA. I break kids up in teams of 3 or 4, give them some letters and they have to make a word. Again, use letter flashcards or write letters on cardstock. As busy as things are this year, I'm all about easy {and cheap!}. You could also write words on cards and have them get in alphabetical order. Use your imagination.
I'd love to know some of your favorite, easy games to play with your class!
Now, keep hopping to find your next bright idea! Kerri over at Teacher Bits and Bobs has some great ideas about organizing student work folders.
http://teacherbitsandbobs.blogspot.com/2014/03/bright-ideas-blog-hop-copies-copies.html

If you'd rather browse the hop by topic, you can do that too!


9 comments

  1. I really like the idea of starting your math time with a quick game for review! These are perfect for primary grades and the Cluck Cluck Chicken make a difficult concept appropriate for this age group! And...your accent is too cute:)

    Tammy
    The Resourceful Apple

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  2. I hopped over from the Bright Idea Blog Hop! This is terrific and I love how they get to move!
    Your friend,
    ~Fern
    Fern Smith's Classroom Ideas!
    Fern Smith's Pinterest Boards!

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  3. Your students look like they are so happy to be in your class. I love this activity. It gets kids moving!

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  4. The kids all look so happy with these games because they are fun! Love the video too *mwah*

    Journey of a Substitute Teacher

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  5. I loved watching your kids learning with these games and getting 100% participation. So many great ideas! Wish I could send my grand daughter to your class!
    Arlene
    LMN Tree

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  6. I love the way this activity engages the kids and gets them moving! Great job! :)

    Gladys
    Teaching in High Heels

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  7. Love it, Vickie! I may have to steal, I mean, borrow this idea for larger numbers!
    Jennifer
    First Grade Blue SKies

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  8. Love these ideas, especially Cluck Cluck Chicken! Thanks for adding the video!! Love it!
    XO
    Laura
    Peace, Love, and First Grade

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  9. Fun ideas!!!!! P.S. I am obsessed with the green eggs and ham in the background...

    Megan
    Mrs. Wheeler's First Grade

    Mrs. Wheeler's TPT

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