Here are a few more car games that we do while driving or while having a meal.
* The opposite game: I give them a word and they have to tell me the opposite.
* The synonym game: (My oldest calls this the cinnamon game!) I say a word like “big” and have them determine other words that mean the same thing. This is great for building vocabulary and will help them once they begin writing because they’ll be able to infuse their writing with colorful vocabulary. We also talk about the continuum along which the words are situated. Such as the fact that huge is bigger than big and humongous might be the biggest along the continuum.
* The category game: I give them a category like fruit, vegetables, vehicles, sports, or treats and they have to name things in that category.
* The inference game: This is their favorite! I give them clues about something and they have to guess what I’m talking about. We start by saying whether it’s a person, place or thing and then give clues. My oldest always figured out the answer right away so we devised a strategy where he tugs on his ear if he thinks he knows and then he mouths it to me so I know he knows. That way my younger guys can continue to think before making their guess. Once they get good at it, they can choose something and give you the clues. This is a fabulous game because it helps them develop inferencing skills which they’ll use while reading to help them comprehend. Sometimes during the game we’ll stop and I’ll say, “Based on the information that you have, what could the answer be?” Then we talk about what information they would need next in order to determine the answer.
* The sight word game: I tell my son a sight word and ask him to spell it aloud for me. I taught him a strategy to visualize the word and say the letters which works well for him.
I’d love to hear about the literacy (or math) “games” that your family plays in the car!