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Flashcard Fun!
by Rynette R. Kjesbo, M.S., CCC-SLP
We’ve all used them... Flashcards are helpful for teaching new skills or for practicing targeted speech sounds. But if you’ve ever used flashcards with children, you’ve probably heard, “This is boring!” So what’s a parent, teacher, or therapist to do?!? Listed below are some suggestions for games and activities to make therapy with flashcards more fun!
Paired Cards
  1. Memory Match – Shuffle pairs of cards and lay them out on a table facedown. (The more pairs you have, the more difficult the game will be.) Players take turns turning over two cards and practicing their target skills. If a player finds a match, he/she keeps the match until the end of the game. The player with the most matches at the end of the game wins.
  2. Go Fish – Deal 5 cards to each player. On a player’s turn, he/she requests a card from another player to match one in his/her hand. If the other player doesn’t have the card the first player requested, he/she says “Go Fish” and the player who requested the card draws a card from the remaining stack of cards. If a player gets a match, he/she keeps the match until the end of the game. The player with the most matches at the end of the game wins.
  3. Scavenger Hunt – Separate card pairs into two piles. Hide one pile of cards around the room. Divide the matching cards evenly between players. Players must look around the room to find the matches to their cards. When a player finds a match, he/she practices his/ her target skill. The first player to find all of his/her matches wins.
  4. Mystery Bag – Place your flashcards into an empty pillowcase or box. Players take turns pulling out cards and practicing their skills. When a player pulls out a matching card, he/ she sets the match aside until the end of the game. The player with the most matches at the end of the game wins.
Non-Paired Cards:
  1. Flashlight Hunt – Attach cards to the wall using tape or reusable putty adhesive and turn off the lights. Players take turns using a flashlight to find the cards and practice their skills in the dark. (Make this activity more challenging by hiding the cards instead of fastening them to the wall.)
  2. Board games – Board games are a simple way to make flashcards more fun. Players simply draw a flashcard and practice their skills before taking a turn in the game.
  3. Fishing Game – Put a paper clip on each card and lay them facedown on the table or floor. Make a fishing pole by tying a string to a ruler on one end and a magnet on the other. (The longer the string, the more difficult it will be to control the movement of the magnet.) Players take turns “fishing” for cards and practicing their skills. As an added challenge, leave the cards faceup and ask each player to “catch” a specific card.
  4. Bowling Fun – Clip a large clothespin to each card and stand it up on end. Line up several clothespins in a row. Players take turns practicing their skills and trying to knock the cards over with a ball. The player who knocks over the most cards wins.
  5. Special Delivery – Cut a slit in the top of an empty juice carton or box to make a mailbox. Players take turns sliding cards through the mail slot as they practice their skills.
  6. Roll of the Dice – Divide a piece of paper into six sections. Write a number (1-6) in each box, then put a flashcard in each one. Students take turns rolling a die and practicing the skill on the flashcard in the corresponding numbered box. The student collects the flashcard after he/she correctly practices his/her skill. Put a new flashcard in the empty box, and the next student takes a turn. (Game variation: Divide students into two teams. Teams take turns rolling the die and collecting cards, but do NOT replace them as they are taken. If a team rolls a number that has an empty box, play proceeds to the next team. The team with the most cards after all six cards are gone wins the round. Refill the boxes and start another round.)
 
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