Educational Games for Elementary Students

Use items that you currently have laying around the house to create fun games that your child can learn from. The examples below are simple educational games that are easy to set up and execute.

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Why Are Educational Games Beneficial?

Elementary students benefit from fun, educational games because they are able to become active participants in their learning. By using games, kids will better understand concepts because they are able to explore, discover and find solutions on their own. Children of all abilities are able to participate and contribute to games, which gives them a sense of accomplishment and builds their self-esteem.

Shape Soup Game

Help your son or daughter with shape recognition, matching skills and how to take turns with the shape soup game. You will need:

  • A large pot
  • Various shapes cut out of paper (triangles, circles, squares and rectangles), at least two of each type of shape
  • Large wooden spoon

Place all the shapes into the pot. During each turn, the player will stir the 'soup' with a wooden spoon and get two shapes out of the pot. If the two shapes match, then he may keep the shapes. If they do not match, he must put the shapes back into the pot. The game will continue until all the shapes are gone. The person with the most shapes at the end is the winner.

To adjust this game, the rules remain the same; just change the 'ingredients' of the soup to whatever you want your child to learn. For older kids, you can cut up a bunch of letters from newspapers or magazines. During each turn, the player will scoop out some letters and try to make a word out of the letters. If she is able to make a word, then she gets a point. If she can't, then she gets zero points for that round. Play about ten rounds and whoever gets the most points wins the game.

Alphabet Scavenger Hunt

With this game, your child will sharpen his or her observation skills and learn about beginning letter sounds at the same time. First, have your child write each letter of the alphabet with adequate space between each letter on a sheet of paper. Next, have your child find objects around the house that begins with each letter of the alphabet and write that object down.

You can also play this game to reinforce math skills. Give your child a ruler and challenge him or her to find items in the house that are various lengths of your choosing. For younger students, you may need to pre-measure strips of paper and label the lengths. Then, have your child find objects with the same length as the paper strips.

Ice Cream Contest

Teach your child about measurements and about liquids and solids with this activity. You will need:

  • One cup milk
  • One teaspoon vanilla
  • Two tablespoons sugar
  • Eight cups crushed ice
  • Eight tablespoons salt
  • One standard-sized coffee can
  • One economy-sized coffee can

Have your child put the milk, vanilla and sugar into the standard-sized coffee can. Place the plastic lid on it and put that can into the economy-sized can. Add the ice and salt into the economy-sized can and place the lid on it. Have your child figure out the best way to make this liquid into a solid (roll it, shake it, etc.). Once the ice cream is made, you can get some toppings and have an ice cream party.

Explain that when salt and ice are mixed, the temperature of the ice lowers significantly below normal. The combination of rolling and shaking the mixture along with the ice being colder than usual creates the ice cream.

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