Wednesday, June 19, 2013

The Sweet Arrival of Summer...

Hello again, friends! Well, I just finished up the school year, and I am rejoicing that summer vacation is finally here! I know there are some friends reading who still have a few more days, so I wanted to share an idea that my students always enjoy which kind of has a summer vibe to it. I say that because you'll need some fly swatters, and summer seems to be the time to buy them!

I am not sure if this game has some other name to it, but I call it SWAT. I just don't feel comfortable using clip art of living creatures of any kind (like flies) on my SWAT games, so I use things like apples, books, etc. 

I use this game when I am reviewing vocabulary, key terms, etc. It could even work well for a trivia game or end of year review. Basically, all you need to do is create a sheet or board that has all of the key words or answers. Divide the class into two teams and use different color fly swatters for each team. That makes it much easier to see who swats first. You could do this on a large piece of poster board, but I just put a sheet on my screen with the document camera so that my whole class can see it. 

A member from each team (students take turns) stands in front of the swatters ready. I read the question, and the first person to "swat" the correct answer earns a point for his/her team. My students know to swat gently and to leave the swatters on the answer until I tell them to remove them. The students really enjoy it!

If you are concerned about the active engagement of the students not at the board for each question, you can creatively plan your SWAT game so that all kiddos are engaged. Here are two ideas that I like to use:

1. Give all students on each team a photocopy of the board and have them SWAT (with their pencils or fingers) along with the two students at the board. They then check to see if they answered correctly. Many swats are followed by questions from students who were not at the board but need clarification of the answers. This lends itself to a great test review!

2. Call on students from the team at random to repeat the definition or question. For example, I state the definition. Students at the board swat the answer. We confirm whether or not the answer is correct. Students remove the swatters. I call on a team member from the team who scored the point to repeat the question or definition I stated. They can earn bonus points for their teams. I also allow team members to answer if both teams swatted the incorrect answer. Let me tell you, they ALL pay attention (and the repetition helps retention of material).

I also want to share some summer theme FREEBIES with you! Maybe my Summer Word Search freebie might help fill a few moments these last few days for anyone who may still be in school.

It's not like a regular word search because the words are not provided. Just the first letter of each word is given. If you are already out of school for the summer, perhaps you can file it away for next year. You can download it for FREE at my TpT shop by just clicking the link below.

Summer Freebie 1

Another summer theme freebie that might come in handy during these last few days is my Flip Flop Fragments: Changing Fragments into Sentences. Students first must identify 15 groups of words as either sentences or fragments. They then must change the fragments into complete sentences in order to write a summer story. You can also download this activity for FREE at my TpT shop by clicking the link below.

Summer Freebie 2

(thanks to my ATUE friends for your very kind donations!) 
so I hope you will stop by and say hello!
Until next time, happy summer, friends!
You can find me here:


  1. Thank you for the totally cute Flip Flop Fragments!

    1. My pleasure! I hope this activity will be useful in your classroom. Enjoy!

      Thanks for stopping by ATUE! :)

  2. I use this game concept all the time. I call it Swat It and have sets for math, grammar, and sight words. Happy summer to you.

    1. My kiddos think it's so much fun! :)

      I hope you enjoy your summer vacation!


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