How to have fun with flashcards

I love to use flashcards with the kids. It might sound dry and boring and really old-fashioned, but we do have fun with them. And the kids respond really well to them. Here are a few ideas of how we use our flashcards.

  • I try to introduce new flashcards only one or two at a time. We talk about the new flashcard, and then I hide the new card in the stack, close to the front. Every time the new flashcard shows up, the kids stand up and shout “hello” to the new card (I join in with them until they are doing fairly well on their own). Then, I hide the card again just a little bit further in the stack. We do this several times depending on how many cards there are in the stack. For example, I just added the number 8 to the little one’s stack of numbers flashcards. We talked about the number eight, counted to eight, traced the eight on the card. Then, I hid the card about 2 to 3 cards from the front as we both said, “Goodbye, Mr. Eight.” When she got to the card and recognized it as our new card, she jumped up and we both said, “Hello, Mr. Eight” and then we hid it again.
  • Another game we’ve played with flashcards is our matching game. This works particularly well with the capital and small letter flashcards. First, I spread all of the cards out on the floor in random order. Her job is to match the baby letter to the daddy letter. When she makes a set, she hands the cards to me and tells me the names and sounds of the letters.

  • My son loves to beat his own time, to see how fast he can get through a big stack of cards. But every now and then, he gets stuck on a new card; and I have to get really creative. This last week the cards that gave us trouble were his new phonics sounds “ou in out” and “ow in owl.” He kept wanting to say short a or long o for the sound. After a few days of failed attempts, I finally thought of the wolf cry. He loved it. And the sound really stuck for him. So every time those cards come up in the stack we howl like wolves, and he remembers to use the right sound.

You can have fun with flashcards and drills. It’s all in how you choose to use them. So, it’s your turn. What are some fun ideas that you have used with your flashcards and drills?

One thought on “How to have fun with flashcards

  1. We LOVE flashcards too and use them several times a week in reading and math! I like to make them in fun shapes (like
    Christmas trees, fire trucks, hearts, lions, etc.). We also like to play games with them (ex. hiding them around the room and having Abigail gather them up and tell me what is each flashcard as she finds it).

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