The sun is starting to shine. Things are starting to re-open. The end of the school year is around the corner. Many students are starting to get antsy and need to burn some energy. After all, it’s been a hard year for students and teachers and a long break is on the horizon. It’s likely that your students are starting to get a little squirrelly and just in time for testing season! One way to keep your students engaged while you are still using the tools you have in your classroom is to implement games for centers in elementary classrooms.
The beauty of adding games into your centers is not only engagement but motivation too. The biggest bonus is you can keep your framework and use some of the materials you already have to create games that are fun for your students. Not sure what to do? Here are some games you can use for centers in elementary classrooms.
1: BUMP Up the Fun in Your Centers
A fun game that many students like to play is BUMP. BUMP games are easy for you to set up and students can use them to review past material which makes spiral review simple! If you’re unfamiliar with how to play BUMP, it’s easy to learn. All you need are three dice, a “bingo” like card, and some “markers” for the board. I like to use small plastic circles that are translucent so students can see the numbers underneath. Students can work on adding, subtracting, and other math skills with this center game. Just make sure you have clear instructions in the math center students are using. You could also use BUMP games with phonics and sight words!
2: Roll the Dice and Squares Your Brain
Another great game you can play in centers is Squares Your Brain because your students can do it independently or in groups. This game, once your students know the rules, is easy to do and they can check their own work with the answer key. Much like BUMP games, students can use Squares Your Brain in math and literacy centers which makes this a versatile game for your centers in elementary classrooms.
3: Bring the BOOM with BOOM Cards
Boom Cards, while they are great for individual review, can also be used for a competitive game when you have students take turns answering questions. They can keep score to give them the motivation to work harder. Plus, if a student gets something wrong, they can get help from their partner. This makes the review and the game more meaningful because students can strengthen their skills.
4: Use Digital Games to Strengthen Student Skills
Games can be tricky if you are trying to keep people socially distanced or if you are hybrid teaching. In order to keep this fun option in your classroom, you can utilize digital math and literacy centers in your classroom. You can make any digital center into a game by adding a competitive component to it. You can also use digital escape rooms to keep students motivated to keep learning.
The school year is always full of a variety of distractions where you need students to get re-focused. A great way to get students focused is to use games for centers in elementary classrooms because it helps maintain classroom management, engages students, and keeps the learning going.
Until Next Time…
Keep Being Educational Rock Stars