Small Group Games with Flashcards

Although my small group time is limited, I try to squeeze in as much fun and engagement as I can.  One of my favorite tricks is to play learning games, which is just teacher code for more practice! Below, I'm sharing four of my favorite learning games and how to play them.  Low on materials or prep time? No problem! All you need to play these games is a deck of flashcards and your students!
Small Group Games Using Flashcards

Student tested, teacher approved! My students and I play one or more of these games each day!  These games are super versatile; use them with number flashcards, sight words, pictures, or vocabulary words.

1. Slap It! (2 teams of 1-4 students)

How to play: Spread cards on a table.  Students stand in two lines behind the table.  The teacher calls out a word, and students race to "slap" it.  The first person to slap the word/answer/definition keeps the card for their team. The team with the most cards in their pile wins. Challenge: Students must say/spell/define the word they've slapped in order to keep it.  If they can't, it goes to the other team.

Small Group Flashcard Games

2. Blurt! (2-6 players, can be individual or teams) 

How to play: Hold a deck of flashcards in your lap.  Show one card.  The first person to blurt out the word/answer/definition keeps the card for their team. Challenge: At the end of the game, each person must choose one word to make a sentence for or define.

3. Guess It! (2-6 players, can be partners or whole group)

How to play: Students choose a card, keeping it a secret.  One by one, they give three clues about their card, without saying the name.  The partner has three chances to guess the card.  Challenge: Make this a listening activity by having the partner illustrate the card based on the clues!

Small Group Flashcard Games
Click the picture to find these picture cards in my store!

4. Pass It Back (2-8 individual players)

How to play: Pass out 3-4 flashcards cards to each player.  Using a clue, (like the description/definition/spelling) call back the cards, one by one.  (For alphabet cards, I would say "I'm looking for the letter that makes the sound /s/ as in Sarah.) The first person to lose all their cards is the winner! Challenge:  Before passing back their card, students must spell, define, or use their word in a sentence.

I keep multiple sets of alphabet, sight word, pictures, and number cards in my room so they're easy to grab for a quick group game.  These take only a few minutes to play, and are great for warm-ups, brain breaks, and even an informal formative assessment.

What fun games do you play with flashcards?


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