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Word-form Recognition Fluency, Word Snake

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Activity Type: Build Fluency
Activity Form: Game
Grade: 1, 2, 3
Group Size: Small Group
Length: 10 minutes
Materials: A deck of cards that contains each word-recognition word learned so far (ideally, there should be at least 20 cards) and a stopwatch
Goal: Given a written regular word, the student can say the word with automaticity ( abc -> "abc" ).
Items: All word-recognition words learned so far

What to do

  1. Find an open space that is at least ten feet by ten feet. Place 20 word-recognition cards on the floor in a winding path (or wiggly snake) formation. The cards should be placed about a foot or so apart.
  2. Divide students into two teams: team A and team B. Each team should stand in a line at opposite ends of the snake.
  3. Have the line leader for team A and the line leader for team B play one round of rock, paper, scissors to determine which team will go first.
  4. Today we are going to play Word Snake. When I say begin, the first person in team A’s line has 30 seconds to try and read every word-recognition card along the snake before the timer goes off. If team A's leader correctly reads every word along the snake, team A gets two points, and the next person on team A gets a chance to do the same thing. If team A's leader reads some, but not all of the words correctly, team A gets only one point and the first person in team B gets a turn to read all of the cards in 30 seconds, but this time starting from the opposite end of the snake.
  5. Show students how to walk along the snake as they read. They should take one step for every word they read correctly.
  6. Remember to sound out each word in your head before reading it, and then say it quickly aloud as you walk along the snake.
  7. The team with the most amount of points after everyone has two turns wins.

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