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Monopoly, or Read & Spell Around

A great game to help teach word family patterns and spelling patterns. This should be used with children who write fairly comfortably, usually second grade or older.

To Make: Create a game board with 4 or 5 squares on each side. Prepare word cards with families of words that emerge from the child's reading or dictating: night, light, tight; went, bent, sent; hat, cat, bat. (For beginning readers or younger children, make sure the patterns are not too similar: mat, sat, rat; man, can, ran; met, set, bet.) Color code each word family, and each side of the game board.

Place the words face up around the board in sets. To add to the element of chance, have other game directions on the board, such as "take another turn", "go back 3 paces", etc. Prepare score sheets for each player with color-coded headings for each word family.

Monopoly board

To Play: Role dice or use a spinner to move around the board. Wherever a player lands he reads the word, then writes it in the appropriate "word family" category on the score sheet. Extra points can be earned by dictating or writing sentences with the rhyming words.

monopoly score sheet

For older children variations can be developed to include other spelling patterns, not necessarily rhyming: vowel diphthongs (goat, toast, road) or tricky consonant blend words that may cause trouble: (stick, stuff, stop; slip, slap, slop) or many more.