We recently enjoyed a homemade action word card game that had us acting out all over the house. I couldn’t believe how Little T took to it, though it shouldn’t have been a surprise since she is really into dramatic pretend play.
The books that we’ve read the past week had some interesting pictures and descriptions. I cut unlined index cards into smaller pieces and wrote an action word or phrase from the books on each card. Voila! We had a simple card game that we played for more than a day, since it was more fun to do than just talking about what a particular word means. Little T even brought the game with her when we went out for some afternoon snacks!
Playing the game is easy. We just take turns picking and acting out a card, and the other one guesses what the word is . Some of the words on our cards are hug, wave, walk the dog, mow the lawn, get off the bus, turn around like the sprinkler, and throw the garbage out. Some are suggestions from Before Five in a Row, and most are our own choices from the books that we’ve read.
Two main benefits of the activity are vocabulary acquisition, especially for Little Sir who’s just two years old, and the opportunity for creative play. With just 16 cards, we were bound to get tired with the same old words. Trust kids not to have room for boredom, though! Little T started doing variations of her actions after a few rounds to spice things up.
I used to like printing things out, and even bought a laminating machine to make beautiful and sturdy homemade games. I’ve realized, though, that ink is much too expensive and laminating takes a lot of time… not mine but my husband’s, who I wheedle into laminating for me since I’m scared of the machine!
This set of action words game is just one of the simple toys I’ve recently made with paper and a pen. You can easily make your own version with any words that you encounter in a book, or simply want to introduce to your kids.