Toss and Blend: A Carnival Game

What You Need:

  • Paper, for recording words
  • Markers
  • 5 paper cups
  • Tape
  • Handful of coins, buttons, or game chips

What You Do:

  1. Using a thick marker, write one of the following beginning blends on the inside lip of each paper cup: BL-TW-QU-CH-SH
  2. Next, tape the cups to the floor so they are touching, and visible when viewed from a standing position by you and your child.
  3. On chart paper or a pad, create a beginning letter blends chart. Write the blends as you did on the cups across the top of the paper. These blends form the headings for the columns of your chart. Underneath them, you'll list the words your child brainstorms, in the appropriate individual column. 
  4. Time to toss! To start the game, take turns with your child tossing a chip into the cup of your choice. When the chip lands in a cup, the player must come up with a word that starts with its beginning blend. For example, if your child's chip lands in the BL- cup, she needs to dream up a word with that beginning, such as “blue” or “black”. Each time someone comes up with a word, let your child (with your assistance) record it on the letter blend chart.

How many words did you come up with for each blend? Ask your child to tally the results! Can she come up with other beginning blends to use for a future round? Does she think she's ready to tackle the game with ending blends instead? Get her feedback. And if she's game, get out those chips and keep tossing!

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