2nd Grade Phonics Games

Instructor: Sharon Linde

Sharon has a Masters of Science in Mathematics

Second grade students are in that sweet spot with reading acquisition - familiar with most basic alphabetic principles and catching on to relationships among letters. Use these fun games to reinforce phonics skills.

Phonics and Second Grade Students

What's better than teaching a young child to read? Maybe ice cream, but not much else! Even better is teaching them important concepts, like phonics, without boring them to tears. Setting up opportunities for students to play games as a learning device is the true mark of a great teacher. Incorporate these easy-to-create games into your routine.

Word Family Games

Word families have similar sounds or letter patterns, like the 'at' in the words cat, hat, fat and rat. We teach students about word families and establish practice with them in a variety of ways for a few reasons: they learn important decoding skills, like chunking; they learn to recognize sound combinations and become less reliant on sounding out individual sounds; and their brains eventually catch on to viewing reading as a fluent process. Take a look at some games to use to reinforce this skill.

Roll a Word

Create this game by using a file folder or large piece of paper for the game board and a cube template for dice. On the game board, make a squiggly sidewalk-like pattern and write ending sounds in each square, such as 'at,' 'ot,' 'an,' and so on. Make a start and end point. Write single letters on the die and assemble.

Students use a cube or other game piece to play. Play begins at the start point. Students roll the die, determine the first word they can create, and move their piece to that square. Add a challenge by having them speak and write the word. Encourage students to simply play this game without thinking of a winner or loser - everyone who learns wins!

Block Stack

This game is great for those active, tactile learners. Write ending sounds on wooden blocks. On index cards, write beginning letters; laminate. Place in a tub and explain to students that to play they first choose a beginning sound, such as 't,' then stack blocks on top of the card to create words, such as 'tin,' 'tan,' 'tap,' and so on. Have students take pictures of their block towers with their tablets or draw a picture when finished.

Chip and Clip

Use clothes pins and paint chip samples to create this game. Write ending sounds on the paint samples, such as 'in' and 'on' and 'an.' Write onset blends on the clothes pins. Students slide the clothes pin along the paint chip sample, creating and reading words as they slide. Have them record themselves reading the words, read with a buddy, or write the words they speak.

Blending Games

Blending is an important skill for emerging readers to master. Typical blending games and activities use beginning blends, like 'gl' or 'st' and add endings to create words. Put these games in centers for frequent student practice.

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