Teaching Book Genres With the "Name That Genre!" Game
- Grades: 3–5
As we all know, students do not master concepts by simply memorizing definitions. To apply their knowledge of the different genres, my students play a game that I created called "Name That Genre!"
Before we can play the game, I teach my students the characteristics of 3-4 different genres. I find that it is best to introduce a few at a time and read aloud books from the specific genres that I have taught instead of trying to teach many different genres at one time. I play the "Name That Genre" game after every 3-4 genres that I teach. Each time we play, students are familiar with a few more genres, so the game becomes more challenging.
Before the game starts, I give my students genre signs. These are just half-sheets of paper with the names of the different reading genres that we have studied. Students are asked to hold up the correct sign after I introduce and describe the features of pre-selected books from our classroom library.
For example, with the book Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, I would focus on the things that make this book fall into the "Fantasy" genre by describing the chocolate river, the flying elevator, and the Oompa Loompas.
After I give students some information about the book I say, "Name that Genre." Students are not allowed to hold up their sign until I say those three words. They can, however, get their sign ready as they listen to the clues and determine the correct genre.
Download the posters and the genre signs (for the 10 major genres) I use for this game on my classroom website.