Literacy Games for a Theme

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Challenge  friends to a race of the minds.

Prepare two banners (or as many as you need for each team) that say whatever you want them to say. Example: Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Kiss Me I’m Irish! Luck of the Leprechaun, etc. The words can be themed to any holiday!

Also prepare a set of letters for the same words cut out in two different colors (for two teams) hidden randomly around the area.

Divide the group into teams with captains–the captains sit and wait for their teammates to bring the letters for their banner. If a student is on the “gold” team and sees a letter for the “green” team he/she just leaves it alone. The first team to cover their banner letters wins.


Set a kitchen timer for one minute. When the time starts, write down as many of the season or Holiday-related words that you can think of.

  • Example Christmas: Wreath, mistletoe, sled, snow, ribbon, gifts, tree, tinsel, shopping, candy cane, cookies, candles, lights, snowman, bells, angel, ornaments, etc.
  • Valentine Day: Heart, cupid, love, gifts, candy, sweets, sweet, cards, flowers, jewelry, dinner out, kiss, hug, like, etc.


  • Take a Holiday related word.
  • Example for Thanksgiving:  Word choices could be Mayflower, Cornucopia, etc. Find as many little words as possible within that word – before the timer runs out.
  • Example: Cornucopia Words – corn, pin, no, arc, car, nip, cop, cup, on, or, rap…

Black board / chalk or dry erase board
Slips of paper with a different themed word of an item/object writen on each paper, Word Examples for a  Winter Theme: Mittens, coat, candy cane, snowman, snowflake, hot cocoa, boots, scarf, etc.

  •  Divide the kids into teams. The first player draws a slip of paper from the bowl; reads it silently and hands to the facilitator.
  • The player then draw clues as to what is on their paper and the team guesses what it is.
  • If the playing team guesses correctly, before the timer runs out, they get two points.
  • If the playing team cannot guess correctly, before the timer runs out, the opposing team may take one guess.
  • If the opposing team guesses correctly they get a point and the playing team loses a point. Most points wins. For younger children … DON”T divide into teams; use a timer or keep track of points. Just play until someone calls out the right answer.

***Idea-Make Everyday Literacy games a Themed game! How about playing TRADITIONAL HANG MAN or BINGO to go with your theme! Themed Bingo cards can be downloaded easily from internet sites such as DLK…also crossword puzzels, word search, etc. can all be theme based.


1.)  Literacy: Games and Creative Story Telling

2.)  Literacy with Games, Music, Jokes and Twisters!

3.)  Literacy Based Gifts for Kids to Make

4.)  Something Different with Literacy: Cooking; Build a Theme around a Book; Word of the Day; Survivor and More!

5.)  Literacy Games for a Theme, Season or Holiday

6.)  Writing and Language Center Ideas

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