So far this year Kindergarten Spelling Star Meghan has written spelling words in Jello (“Spello”), in shaving cream, and with water painted on the sidewalks. Now it’s time to write spelling words in the snow. But what if the snow doesn’t show up? We just make our own snow!
Spelling in Real Snow.
Bundle up and go outside in the real snow and let your gloved (not mittened) kindergartner write spelling words with a finger, or a stick. A fun addition is to pour colored water in the trenches made by the spelling words and let them freeze that way (until the next snowfall anyway).
Fake Snow Spelling.
Use either fake snowflakes from the craft store or bring out the trusty shaving cream. Cover a cookie sheet with a thin layer of fake snow. Then let your kindergartner pick a word card, read the word out loud, and write it in the “snow” with her index finger. (If you use the shaving cream, have plenty of paper towels on hand!) It’s very easy to correct a mistake; just moosh the snow back together again for a clean slate.
Time to draw a snowman in the fake snow. Provide raisins or M&M’s to make eyes, nose, and a line for the mouth. If it’s real snow, call him Frosty, and if it’s fake snow, call him Flaky! In the real snow, you can either have your kindergartner draw a snowman in the snow with a stick, or build a real snowman.
Snow and Spell, the Kindergarten Board Game.
Using one of Meghan’s teacher’s ideas I made a “board game” on a big piece of paper, and named it Snow and Spell. First I wrote all the week’s words on small paper squares, about six squares for each word. We cut the squares out and pasted half of them down on the paper right side up in random order. It looked like a little ski trail. For fun, we drew in a snowman or a tree here and there. The other half of the squares we mixed up, and then turned them upside down. Meghan drew one of her spelling squares, turned it over, and then moved her penny to the next closest matching word on the trail. Then her opponent did the same, and you can guess who that was. Somehow her penny got to the finish line faster than mine! (Instead of pennies you could use little cotton balls glued to little pieces of cardboard, and they would look like snowballs!)
Snow Squares: It’s a Toss Up
This time we threw all the word squares up in the air and let them fall on the floor any old way, some right side up and some upside down. Meghan then had to read all the ones that had landed right side up. This was really easy for her, but she wanted to do it again, mainly because she enjoyed throwing little pieces of white paper all over the room. (Kind of looked like snow!)
Are fun and games a better way for kindergartners to learn spelling words?
Meghan has lots of fun playing games with her kindergarten spelling words, and she does remember how to spell them all. It makes the old rote memorization methods seem far less effective (and more boring) than these new tactile, action learning techniques. After the fun and games, I usually ask Megan to write and spell the words again from memory, just to make sure some real learning has occurred. So far, she has incredible recall and accuracy. I suppose once you’ve written a word in shaving cream you never forget it!
Kindergarten spelling sheets