Musical Matching - A Blending Game

Hey y'all!  

How's the week going so far?!  If it's anything for you like it is for me, then it's crazy...and jam packed full of Halloween insanity {I'm talking about the kids, of course;)}  I love, love, LOVE Halloween, but I know you feel me when I say that celebrating it at school with the kids is nothing short of....well...crazy.  Fun, absolutely.  But crazy nonetheless.  I feel ya, friends.  I really do!

But let's go ahead and keep it business as usual until all Hallow's Eve and remain thankful that Friday's festivities don't coincide with a full moon {can I get an amen?!!??!}

I wanted to share a fun game with y'all that I shared with my friends in TN last week.  I'm all about incorporating games into learning.  Hands-on, life sized, kinesthetic, get'cha-up-and-movin' kinda games.  I love that my kids make connections to these games days/weeks/months after playing when they're independently working on similiar concepts at different points during the year.  And let's be are just plain FUN.  And that's just how learning {and teaching!!!} should be...FUN!!!!  

One of the most important...and oftentimes trickiest...skills to teach our early readers is how to blend onsets/rimes/phonemes.  Here's a game that garnered rave reviews from my kids over the years.  It's a little onset/rime blending game that'll get your kids up and moving, blending sounds, and identifying real and nonsense words.   Let's play, shall we?!

Label a small set of plates with various word endings/families {rimes}.  As you can see in the pic above, I have lots of different rimes on my plates.  You could play this game using as few as 1 or as many as you want!  Label a set of index cards with different phonemes/onsets.  Place the labeled plates in a circle on the floor and hand out one labeled index card to each of your kids.  While your kids are holding their cards, direct them to stand in a circle around the plates.  

Now start the music.  Crank it or yank it.  Pump up the jam {does that date me?!?!?}  I like to turn on KidzBop when we play this game because the kids love it and I actually know the words so I can sing along, too.  While the music is playing, the kids will move around the plates going clockwise/counterclockwise {just like musical chairs}.  When the music stops, the kids stop in front of a plate.  

The kids will take their index card {onset/phoneme} and blend it with the word ending/rime they're standing in front of.  If they blend a real word, they stay in the game.  If the word they blend is nonsense, they're out.  {You could potentially have several kids out at once depending on the number of different onsent/rimes you include in the game}.  Unlike musical chairs, you won't remove any of the plates.  Start the music again, sing for a bit, stop, and blend.  Wash. rinse. repeat.  The game is all over when only one person is standing :)  

To keep the other kids engaged in the activity when they get out, you could have them take out their dry erase boards/sleeves and write the real/nonsense words as they're called out during play.  Encourage those that are "out" to use 1-2 of the real words in a sentence while the music is playing.  There are lots of ways to keep non-participants engaged and learning!!  

I hope you can use this fun little game in your room.  Maybe on Friday perhaps?!  Because when trick-or-treating is on the mind, a game is absolutley necessary :)    


  1. What a great idea and game to keep the littlies engaged!!

  2. Awesome idea - thank you! I've got some movers & shakers who will really benefit from this :)

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  5. How many plates do you use? As many as the number of students you have? So they each get a plate to stand in front of? Thank you, GREAT IDEA!!

  6. G.R.E.A.T idea! Thanks so much for sharing!

  7. What a fun activity. Thanks for sharing! :)

    First Grade and Fabulous

  8. This sounds like fun! Thanks for sharing the idea.