## Saturday, August 25, 2012

### Build Literacy Skills with Connect 4

I LOVE to play board games at home, but I also enjoying using them in my classroom. In addition to encouraging cooperation, turn taking and a variety of other social skills, I find I can often use the games to work on math and literacy skills. So, every Friday, I am going to post a Friday Game Night post, giving tips on how to use a particular board game in your classroom.

Connect 4 - Part 2 (Literacy)

Connect 4 is one of my kids favorite games. It’s a great strategy game, but here are some suggestions on some ways to make it educational. For each of these variations, use a permanent marker to write a single letter (you may want to make duplicates of common letters and leave letters like Q and X out) on each of the yellow and red checkers.  If you used my Math Suggestions for Connect 4, you could easily have numbers on one side and letters on the other – just remind kids to look before they drop in their checkers!

1. Alphabet Chains – Let students copy down the letters from each row and column and then draw a line on their page, starting from A to B, and then to each additional letter of the alphabet - making an Alphabet Chain. Grab this free sheet from Google Docs to help your students with it.

2.Connected Words - Let students copy down the letters from each row and column and then color in connected letters in that makes words.  Grab this free sheet from Google Docs to help your students with it.

3. Alphabetical Order Words - Let students copy down the letters from each row and column and then color in connected letters in that makes words.  Then, let students take those words and put them in alphabetical order. Grab this free sheet from Google Docs to help your students with it.

4. Silly Sentences – Let students copy down the letters from each row and column and then color in connected letters in that makes words. Then, let students take those words and use them to make a silly sentence.  Grab this free sheet from Google Docs to help your students with it.

I hope some of the ideas will help you use Connect 4 in a new, different way. Find more ways to use board games in your room by clicking HERE. Keep playing games and watching your students learn.