I’m sharing our family’s favorite reading and language arts games. These are games that are not only fun, but also boost those literacy, oral language, and written language skills!
Reading and Language Arts Games for Your Homeschool
Reading and Language Arts Games for Little Kids
The following games are great for pre-readers and early readers…. and their older siblings!
Our family loves all of the Peaceable Kingdom’s non-competitive games and this is no exception, although we have since outgrown it and passed it on to dear friends. Alphabet Go Fish! is a classic twist on Go Fish… you fish for letter matches. This is a fun way to learn those ABCs!
Beginner Dinner Games is a favorite in our home. These simple questions and activities, all of which can be played during a meal, are a perfect way to practice verbal communication, social skills, and fun!
Winner of the Oppenheimer Toy Portfolio Gold Seal Best Toy Award, Fairytale Spinner is from eeBoo, the makers of Tell Me a Story cards. This is a wonderful family game that encourages imagination, storytelling, sequencing, and fun, and it is a perfect board game for book lovers, as the goal is to create your own story. In order to do so, you have to take turns spinning and collecting story elements (place, hero, rival, transportation, treasure, magical helper, and magical object). The first person who collects one of each element gets to tell his or her story.
These cubes provide conversation starters for before, during, and after your family read alouds. Build reading comprehension through questions, conversations, and play. These cubes are a simple way to take your family read alouds to the next level.
Yes, Mad Libs. Do you know how much learning is happening while you laugh? So much learning! My two big kids learned the parts of speech in record speed… and they giggled all the way!
These versatile little story cubes can be used as an ice breaker in a group activity, as a one player game, or in a group. There are several versions if you want to play with a group, but the way we typically play is to roll all nine dice and then tell a story based on the images rolled. Rory’s Story Cubes never fails to elicit laughter, all the while building creativity and imagination. I’ll often toss these in my purse if we are headed to a restaurant- it’s become a tradition!
Sight Word Zingo! is a twist on the classic version, with 72 of the most common sight words in lieu of the standard words/images. If you aren’t familiar with the original Zingo!, it’s essentially a modern Bingo that sneaks in vocabulary development.
There are multiple versions of Tell Me a Story cards and they are all fantastic. These versatile cards travel easily and can be used in so many different ways. I love that the game is for ages three years and up, as our family can play together and everyone enjoys playing. When we received our very first deck, years ago, I would use the cards to create stories for the kids so that they got used to it. Nowadays, we take turns. You can tell your own story and then have a friend tell theirs, or you could take turns telling the same story based on the cards. You can arrange the cards in the order you’d like, or pick randomly and fill in goofy details. If you’re really crazy, you can mix multiple decks together. This is such a great early literacy game that fosters creativity and imagination. The illustrations are beautiful and your children are sure to be enthralled.
This award-winning game includes six stories, each told with thirty new words. These stories are further broken down into six sets of five words each. Kids learn to read each of these sets by playing a matching game. Each of The Reading Game’s six stories is told using just thirty new words. These are broken down into six sets of five words. The student learns to read each set of five words by playing a simple word matching game.
More fabulous reading and language arts games for little gameschoolers
Language Arts Games for Older Kids and Adults
Here are some of our favorite games for the little readers in your life:
I just love this game! In this game, players race to create their very own crossword-style puzzles. It is easy to learn and portable and it packs an educational punch. You can play it as a solitaire or play with a bunch of friends, and there are several versions of the game.
In this hilarious game, players listen to a definition read aloud. The first player to blurt the word gets to move ahead. Blurt is a great way to practice word retrieval, build vocabulary, and have fun!
Shake the letter cubes, place the board on the table, flip the 3-minute timer and go! Players rush to find and record as many words as possible, gaining points as they go. This is one of those classic games that families love. We will often play during meals.
PathWords is so addicting! It is like a word search with a puzzle element. Using increasingly difficult challenge cards, you must use the colored geometric pieces to highlight words so that, in the end, you solve the puzzle with no pieces remaining. If you love Pathwords, check out our favorite ThinkFun games!
In this card game, the object is to arrange your cards to make words. There are bonus points for the most words and the longest word. Little kids can play and make short words, so the whole family can enjoy!
This game is such a classic! Players take turns creating a crossword puzzle. Letters have different point values and the board also has special spaces. The player with the most points at the end of the game wins.
This creative card game helps children to work on vocabulary. Your kids will practice synonyms, antonyms, and homphones in this detective-style game. I use this game with my oldest and he is a fan of the special decoding magnifying glass included. The goal is to earn enough badges to be declared a super sleuth!
Table Topics is a fantastic game and is available in several different editions. I think of it as Beginner Dinner Game’s big brother. Whereas Beginner Dinner Games can be goofy, Table Topics is a bit more serious. Featuring over 100 conversation starters, Table Topics will lead your family down rabbit holes as you build memories together and work on conversational skills!
Word A Round is a fast and fun word searching game that can be played a couple different ways. The goal is to find a hidden word on each card. There are three rings per card and there is a hidden word in each ring. We will often play this game as a one–player game, too. 2 or more players, recommended for ages 10 and up.
If you love Scrabble, you’ll appreciate this new twist. In this card game, players are dealt consonant cards. Then, they roll the vowel dice and race to create the word with the highest point value.
Unlike many of the games listed herein, You’ve Been Sentenced goes beyond making words. In this game, players try to create the highest-scoring grammatical sentence. Your children will be giggling as they learn!
Looking for more ways to foster those reading and language arts skills?
Do you use educational games in your homeschool?
Be sure to check out these related posts:
- How to Choose the Perfect Game
- The Best Books for Little Gameschoolers
- Finding Time to Play
- 10 Tips for a Successful Family Game Night
- Ultimate Guide to Homeschooling with Games
- How to Grow Gamers Using Amazing Gateway Games
- How to Enjoy Board Games With Toddlers Underfoot
- How to Enjoy Board Games with Kids Who Fight … And Still Have Fun
- Gameschooling: Learning Through Play
- 100 Games and Picture Books for Play-Based Learning
- Gameschool Resources
Do you love Gameschooling?
I rely heavily on educational games in our homeschool. Read more here:
Looking for gift ideas?
Be sure to check out our gift guides!
Now, it’s your turn. Tell me: What are your family’s favorite reading and language arts games? Share here!
Cait co-hosts The Homeschool Sisters Podcast and is co-founder of Raising Poppies, a community for parents of gifted and twice-exceptional children. Cait is also founder of the Family Book Club at My Little Poppies, a fantastic community of book-loving parents and the Gameschool Community at My Little Poppies, a vibrant community of gameschoolers.
Cait is a contributing writer for Simple Homeschool and GeekMom. Her work has also appeared on The Huffington Post, The Mighty, and Scary Mommy. You can find her on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram
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