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Spelling Games for 5th Grade

Instructor: David Wood

David has taught Honors Physics, AP Physics, IB Physics and general science courses. He has a Masters in Education, and a Bachelors in Physics.

Spelling is a big deal, and spelling proficiency is a powerful foundation for fifth graders to have. So why not help them out by playing a few of these fun spelling games.

5th Grade Spelling Games

Improving spelling has a huge array of benefits. It benefits children's academic success from their ability to gain knowledge from books, to writing skills, to generally gaining the ability to better express themselves. Anything we can do to help our students in that area is therefore worthwhile.

Spelling can be rather dull to learn, but there are ways we can make it more fun. One of those ways is by using spelling games and activities. Check out a few of these ideas you can use in your fifth grade classroom.

Rapid Spelling Challenge

In this game, students are challenged to spell quickly and accurately. Split students into small groups. You will also need one student, per every two groups, to act as game administrators, and not be part of a group. Give each administrator a set of index cards containing random spelling words that are age-appropriate. Also, give each administrator an electronic timer.

To play, groups face off against each other and compete to prove themselves to be the best spellers. You can run it as a kind of league between various teams, or just play random match- ups for fun. Teams get into lines and take turns having one of the members (the person at the front of the line) attempt to spell the word on the next index card. The goal is to get as few points as possible. The quicker they spell the word correctly, the less points they receive. The administrator awards a number of points equal to the number of seconds it takes to spell the word correctly. So for example, if a student took three seconds to spell a word, his team would receive three points. Students can attempt to spell the word multiple times in rapid succession, but if they cannot spell the word correctly within five seconds, then they receive five points and their turn ends.

Whether the student is successful or not, the index card is shown by the administrator who writes down the number of points that team received, and the player goes to the back of the line. This continues until the available time is up, or there are no more index cards remaining. The team with the least points wins.

Round-Robin Hangman

This game is an adaptation on the classic hangman spelling game. Students start by playing hangman in pairs as normal. One student chooses a word and writes out a series of blanks to represent each letter, and the other student guesses letters that might be present in the word. If they guess a letter correctly, any examples of that letter are written over the blanks where that letter belongs. If they guess a letter incorrectly, one part of the hangman drawing is drawn. If they cannot guess the word by the time a full hangman is drawn, they lose.

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