In this game, your child will say the vowel sound in a word and write the letter that represents the sound.
Learning Area(s): Reading and Writing
- one bingo board per player (printable) or make your own
- 20 word cards (printable) or make your own from a list in Tips
- something to write with
- small bowl or bag
Before you play, make a bingo board for each player by printing the template or making your own. If making your own, draw a grid pattern with six rows and five columns. Make each box on the bingo board big enough for your child to write a letter inside. In the top row, write one vowel in each box (a, e, i, o, u). Next, print the word cards or make your own by cutting a sheet of paper into 20 strips. Choose a word list in Tips and write one word on each strip. Fold each piece of paper in half and place it in a small bowl or bag.
Tell your child that they are going to play a game called Vowel Bingo. “We will use short vowel sounds today. Let’s say each vowel sound before we play.” Point to each vowel at the top of the bingo board as you say the short sound for the vowel and ask your child to say it after you. “This sound is /a/ like in cat, say, ‘/a/.’” Repeat with the other vowel sounds: /e/ like in pet, /i/ like in sit, /o/ like in pot, and /u/ like in cut.
Explain how to play the game by saying, “I’ll say a word and then you will say it and listen for the vowel sound.” Choose a word from the bowl and hide it in your hand as you read it. “The word is tap. Now, you say the word tap. What vowel sound do you hear in tap?” Encourage your child to think about the sound or say the word again and listen for one of the vowels from the bingo board. “That’s right, /a/. Can you point to the vowel that makes the /a/ sound?” Show your child the row of vowels on the bingo board. “Next, look at the word to check if you found the correct vowel. If you found the correct vowel, you get to write the letter in any one of the spaces on the bingo board under the vowel a. When you get five in a row in any direction, you win!”
Draw a word card from the bowl. Do not show your child the word. Read the word and guide your child through the steps:
- Repeat the word.
- Say the vowel sound.
- Point to the vowel that makes the sound.
- Check if the vowel they chose matches the vowel in the word (show your child the word).
- Write the vowel in any space under the correct vowel.
Keep playing until your child gets five in a row in any direction. When they win, you can play again with the words that remain or mix the used words back into the bag.
- When playing this game, focus on the sounds of letters and not the letter names. Letters inside slashes—for example, /n/—mean the sound the letter makes.
- If your child has difficulty telling the vowel sound they hear in a word, you can stretch the sound of the vowel for example, instead of saying /tap/, you can stretch out the middle vowel sound and say it slowly: t-aaa-p.
- If your child has difficulty hearing some vowel sounds, you can play with fewer words and vowel sounds. For example, if your child has difficulty hearing the difference between the /e/ sound in bet and the /i/ sound in bit, you can make the game less challenging by removing the i or e words. Then, fill the column of the vowel you removed from play. Later, try switching to the vowel that was removed to give your child practice with the other vowel.
- Instead of five in a row, you might like to try other ways to fill the bingo board:
- The Big Square: form a large square outline on the outer edges.
- Four Square: fill four spaces that connect to form a square
- Black Out: fill the whole board
- An adult or older sibling can be the caller if playing this game with family members or friends. If your child wants to play with a friend, they can take turns being the caller.
You can create your own list of words based on reading and language work your child has recently done at school or for homework. Or you can choose from one of these word lists that increase in difficulty. List 1 is the easiest and list 4 is more challenging.
|word list 1
||word list 2
||word list 3
||word list 4
- You can also play this game using words with long vowel sounds: /a/ like in cake, /e/ like in me, /i/ like in bike, /o/ like in go, and /u/ like in music. You can find long vowel word lists online.