Think about youngsters glued to computer games. Even if they are exploring completely different worlds, it is often extraordinary how quickly they absorb a bewildering range of skills, tips and information.
More amazing still is the fact that most of this learning will be of absolutely no use whatsoever in any other part of their existence.
What keeps them going, keeps them learning? The answer is that it is fun.
Playing games is, pretty much by definition, an enjoyable thing to do. Added to that is the motivation of progressing up through the levels – or whatever other measure of progress they use.
They don’t get paid to do this. They don’t get stickers or certificates – the rewards are inherent. Wouldn’t it be good if school learning was like that, especially for potentially dry subjects such as grammar, punctuation and spelling?
Make learning grammar fun with a spoonful of sugar
You don’t have to be Mary Poppins to recognise that in every job that must be done there is an element of fun. In truth, there are a number of ways of making learning a game, which, as a teacher, you no doubt know.
There are a couple of points to bear in mind, however. First, you have to make sure that your game actually teaches the points you want the pupils to learn. Second, good games can take up valuable time in terms of preparation, which, as a busy teacher, you don’t have a lot of.
English grammar games
You can save yourself an enormous amount of preparation time by using ready-made games. The trouble is, these are often not quite what you wanted to teach. Either that or you are not convinced that they are effectively developing the skills you want your students to acquire.
Luckily for you, on our website we offer an extensive range of grammar, punctuation and spelling games and activities that have been developed by experienced teachers with the express purpose of teaching skills and embedding knowledge specifically required by the Key Stage 2 National Curriculum.
Here are just a few examples…
Word lists for young learners!
How we all love the statutory requirements of the National Curriculum. Of course, it is important to know how to spell all these words but that can be a dry old process. You could make word search games out of them, and there are plenty of websites that will help you to do this.
However, these will just require locating the word and don’t involve much thinking about their meaning, let alone practice of actually spelling the words in question.
Why not try our Year 3 and Year 4 Word List Crosswords instead? There are six of them altogether, attractively laid out, complete with answer sheets.
Naturally, the main purpose is for pupils to be able to spell each word correctly to make it fit. They will also have to understand the meaning of each one in order to answer the clues. As spelling games go, it’s hard to imagine a more perfectly targeted warm-up activity.
Teaching grammar – vocabulary skill building
It’s one thing knowing how to spell words, but it’s quite another thing to know how to use them properly. We offer a variety of fun activities for exploring vocabulary, such as our Sentence Seeds and Scattered sentences. The former involves writing a series of sentences in which the last word of one sentence becomes the first word of the next. Warning! This can really become quite addictive once you start! The latter involves writing a ten-word sentence, then using all those words separately in sentences that build towards a short story – an excellent way to challenge the creativity.
Grammar concepts – KS2 SATs SPaG revision
Grammar revision is one of those areas that can drain the will to live, if you are not careful. After all, there are only so many times that you can expect pupils to enjoy a mock SPaG test or practise on grammar, punctuation and spelling SATs from previous years.
One solution could be our Year 5 Grammar Tarsia puzzles. These ingenious little head-scratchers require pupils to fit together equilateral triangles to form one larger one. The challenge is that there is a grammar term or a model sentence exemplifying that term written down each side of each triangle and you have to match those up to solve the puzzle.
These could be an excellent warm-up activity or even something to aid revision at home. What’s more, we provide templates so that pupils can write their own versions to challenge their peers. If that doesn’t help to secure grammar knowledge, then there’s a good chance that nothing will!
The full grammar activity compendium
This is just a snapshot of the many games and fun activities we offer to help pupils improve their grammar, punctuation and spelling skills.
There isn’t the space here to describe the full collection of primary school resources, worksheets and teaching materials you can download to spark their imaginations and put smiles on their faces. What’s more, they cover all year groups from the beginning of KS1 to the end of KS2.
So, what every you are looking for, from word scales and word snails to sentence makers and powerful verb word spinners, go to Plazoom. Go directly to Plazoom. Do not collect £200 … but you might earn something more valuable: time.