Play a matching game

How you can help at home: Try this fun game that helps students think about how words are related.

By Karen Heath, Consulting Educator

Reinforce your child's recognition of spelling patterns and different spellings for words that sound the same. Create this fun game that encourages him to think about how words are related.

What you'll need

Here's how to do it

Have your child think about words in different word families, for example eight and weight or nation and station. Be sure to include homophones (words that sound the same, but are spelled differently). For example, "You're going to love your new Legos. Or "I had to wait to check my weight."

Give him a sentence, and then ask how each word would be spelled.

Then make flash cards out of index cards with these words. Add other words that could be matched up, and play a matching game based on the sounds or the spelling of the words. Be sure to discuss your child's thinking about the word relationships as he makes a match. Your child will be practicing reading and spelling at the same time.

Karen Heath is an elementary language arts curriculum specialist in Barre, Vermont. She has created and implemented an innovative accelerated language arts program for elementary students in her school. After more than 20 years of teaching, Karen was named Vermont's 2005 Teacher of the Year. She holds a master's degree in education and is the mother of two school-aged children and one child in college.