Play Antonym-Synonym Tic-Tac-Toe
Knowing your antonyms from your synonyms is an important part of the second grade writing curriculum, and it's a real boon for vocabulary. Here's a fun game to help develop this skill in your child:
What You Need:
- Blank tic-tac-toe game boards, drawn on scrap paper
- Thesaurus and/or dictionary
What You Do:
- Explain to your child that synonyms are words with similar meanings and antonyms are words with opposite meanings. To check for your child’s understanding, read the following sentence: On a hot day, you can get too warm unless you find a way to stay cool. Ask your child to identify a pair of synonyms (hot and warm) and a pair of antonyms (hot and cool; warm and cool) in this sentence.
- Now, it's time to play Synonym-Antonym Tic-Tac Toe! Start by choosing a word that has many shades of meaning, such as good, nice, cold, bad, or happy. Write the selected word at the top of the Tic Tac Toe board.
- The “X” player chooses a playing space and marks a small x. She writes a synonym for the selected word in the same playing space. Then, the “O” player chooses a playing space and marks a small o. She writes an antonym for the selected word in her playing space. Play continues until someone gets three in a row. If a player gets stuck, he can try consulting the dictionary or the thesaurus for help.
Liana Mahoney is a National Board Certified elementary teacher, currently teaching a first and second grade loop. She is also a certified Reading Specialist, with teaching experience as a former high school English teacher, and early grades Remedial Reading.