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Waiting Game

Try this simple literacy game for restaurants, planes, the doctor's office, and more.
on January 23, 2014

Last weekend we went out for a family brunch at our favorite restaurant, and because this restaurant has the best bacon in the whole world, a lot of other people go there for brunch too. The wait wasn't too long, but man was my little guy squirrely. While his sister happily colored, he was bored. I grabbed his coloring page, flipped it over, and this game was born. It was a smash hit too.

Here's how you play:

One player writes a letter and the other player completes the word.

It's simple as can be but not only did my son sit happily until his chocolate chip pancakes and his dad's bacon arrived, but he also worked on spelling and handwriting, too. I loved how he was trying not only to come up with the first word that came to mind, but he took his time to think of silly words or words that he thought would (and did) impress me. As we played, I pretended to try to stump him by saying things like, “Oh try this letter...there is NO way you will think of a word!" I knew he could of course, but it's fun to let kids show off when it's a game like this and build their confidence. But be careful if your child can't quite do it yet, as this will have the opposite effect. Find the right way to playfully encourage your child to keep this game going, and keep the learning happening until you are called into the dentist, your pancakes arrive, or whatever else you're waiting for.

What little games do you play with your kids while waiting? Tell us about it on the Scholastic Parents Facebook page.

About this blog

In the Raise a Reader blog, get advice, tips, and resources from our expert contributors on helping your child read at every age and stage. Each week, find book recommendations, literacy activities, and more to spark your reader's interests.

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