Let’s face it, the week or two right before the holiday break is always kind of like trying to herd kittens. Kindergarten students are especially vulnerable to the distractions that come with all the decorations and hoopla of the season. So instead of trying to fight it, why not use it to your advantage by creating a super simple differentiated literacy (or math) game that is crazy engaging and fun.
This game isn’t going to break the bank and even if you decide not to use it this year, make sure to get yourself to your local department store after the holidays and you can scoop up everything you need for SUPER cheap.
- Stocking – one for each level of differentiating you plan on doing
- 20-30 miniature ornaments (for each stocking) with a smooth surface – I like to get the plastic ones if possible so there is no chance of them breaking on accident. You can check THESE (click here) out as an example of what you should get. I actually think I picked up mine several years ago at Target and the DollarTree. Just keep your eyes open for them when they go on sale.
- Sharpie in black and silver
- A festive container (one for each player.)
HOW YOU PLAY
Decide which skills you would like to practice. In my class, I have a set for CVC words, blends and letters right now, but you could totally do nonsense words, digraphs or sight words.
Write your skill words (or letters) on one set (20-30) ornaments and place them in one stocking leaving 4 or 5 ornaments out.
On one of those ornaments draw a couple of “smiley faces” . . .
, , , and a couple of “Bah Humbug” faces. These extra ornaments are what will even the playing field, because let’s face it, it’s not a lot of fun when the same kid wins all the time. These extra ornaments -the smile and bah humbug face will help make it more interesting and engaging.
If a child pulls an ornament and can identify the letter (sound or word), then they place the ornament in their container. If they can not identify it correctly, it goes back into the stocking. If a student pulls a “smile face, ” they keep the ornament and select another. If they pull a ‘bah humbug’ ornament, all their ornaments return to the stocking. You can play until time is up and then count to see who has the most ornaments.
See! Super easy and you can even use number skills if you prefer. For more holiday games and activities, be sure to check out all my holiday blog posts HERE.