Friday, January 29, 2021

Build Vocabulary & Active Listening Skills with Free Valentines Day Riddles!

Would you like to try a Valentines Day activity that builds vocabulary, active listening skills, and critical thinking skills? Would it be even better if you could use it face-to-face, remotely, or in your hybrid classroom? Fun and free would be the icing on that Valentines Day cupcake, wouldn't it?

Here you go!

Now, I know some of you busy teachers have already clicked to head over to Google Drive to download these riddle cards, and I totally understand that. But if you have a moment, I'd love to share some ways that classroom teachers, SLPs, and literacy intervention teachers are using content area riddle card sets like these.

But first...  

     What's a content area riddle?

A content area riddle is designed to build vocabulary around a specific teaching topic, like animals,  weather , or the ocean.  

Here are a few examples.

The examples are for social studies and science topics, but you'll also find riddles in my store for literacy (like sight words, compound words, consonant digraphs) and a math vocabulary set, too.

Most of my riddle sets for content areas have 20-24 cards.  They also include a variety of other ways to integrate the topic across your curriculum, extending your teaching power and helping your students master and retain the words through repeated exposure in different formats.

The "add-ons" vary from set to set, but include...

*  A template to guide your students in writing their own riddles. A writing lesson for your content area, with a suggestion for a speaking and listening activity, too!
One page games for vocabulary, like four in a row games.
Math activities (e.g. color by the code) that relate to the theme

The more that your students are exposed to the vocabulary of the theme that you're teaching, the more connections they'll form between isolated bits of knowledge.  And connections make it so much more likely that they'll understand and remember more about what you're teaching.

      How are teachers using content area riddles?

*  They are using riddles to introduce some or all of the vocabulary at the beginning of a new unit of study.

*  Teachers are doing a riddle card or two each day to focus on the specific topic being taught on that day.

*  They're using them as a review at the end of a unit, before a written assessment. Also as a mid-way point review, riddles (and the discussion around their solution) will give you a ton of information about topics you need to go back and give more attention to.

Speech and language teachers are finding these riddle cards to be a great variety activity for teaching listening skills and language development.

Literacy intervention teachers are finding riddles to be an effective tool for teaching comprehension skills, like identifying key details, inferring, and drawing conclusions.
* Teaching remotely? Teachers report that a riddle is the perfect way to get students focused at the beginning of your teaching session. Maybe even on time! :)

*  Use these riddles for whole class or small group activities, or put them in a center for independent practice.

Just a thought... I've read that with the teaching situation being what it is for Valentines Day 2021, many of you are searching for activities for your virtual Valentines Day Party. Why not try a few riddles?

I hope this gives you some ideas to get started with!  Enjoy your free Valentines Day riddle set!

Click the image to see more Valentines Day resources!

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