Back-to-school season is right around the corner, so gear up your little learners for a great school year ahead with a fun early literacy game you can play outside—soccer style! Grab a soccer ball and head outdoors to practice phonics skills with three fun soccer drills that kids will love. Read on to find out more.
Get a jump-start on the upcoming school year with some phonics practice that's super fun! Your little ones can practice word families, sight words, and other phonics concepts, like consonant and vowel sounds and patterns, while they put their soccer skills to the test. These interactive, tactile activities will reinforce phonics skills and build your students' early literacy abilities.
You will need a soccer ball, mini traffic cones, a mini soccer net (optional) or other goal markers, index cards, a marker, and tape to play the following soccer games.
Be sure to tag @superteacherworksheets on social media if you try these soccer phonics games with your kiddos. We want to see those soccer phonics skills in action!
In this game, children will practice word families with a drill that puts their dribbling skills to the test. Here's how it works:
Choose a word family you want little ones to practice. Write one word from the word family on one index card apiece. Tape an index card to the point of each traffic cone.
Set up the traffic cones in the yard. You can spread them out as far apart or as close together as you wish. You can arrange them in a line or keep them random. If you want, you can set up a goal as well.
Now it's time to play. Call out one of the words from the word family. The first player will dribble his or her soccer ball around that cone as he or she says the word out loud. Continue to call out word family words until the player has dribbled around each cone and said aloud all the words in the word family. When the player has finished the word family weave drill, he or she can take a shot at the goal. Each player takes a turn.
Tip: Prepare several word family batches at once so you can swap the index cards and play several rounds.
In this activity, children will practice sight words with a soccer shooting drill. Write sight words on index cards and tape them to the point of each traffic cone, like you did for the word family weave drill. Set up the cones in a line at one end of the yard.
Call out one of the sight words. Players will take turns identifying the correct sight word cone and taking a shot at the cone. Continue to play until each player has taken a shot at all the sight word cones.
Tip: Position children closer to or farther from the sight word cones as their age/skill level necessitates. Emphasize identifying and aiming for the right sight word over accuracy, as needed.
Practice phonics sounds with a fun passing game. In this activity you will identify a consonant sound, vowel sound, blend, or other phonics skill that children will practice. Each time you call out a word with the phonics sound, kids will pass the soccer ball to each other.
Here's how it works:
Choose a phonics sound, like the CR blend.
Two or more players will pass the soccer ball between them when you call out CR words.
Each time you call out a CR word, the player with the ball will pass to another player. If you call out a non-CR word, the player keeps dribbling the ball.
You can change the rules throughout the game. After calling CR words, announce the new passing rule, like SK words for example.
If a player passes the ball at the wrong time, he or she is out. The last player to be eliminated wins the game.
Tip: Make a list of phonics skills ahead of time so you can call them out easily and switch between consonant sounds, vowel sounds, blends, and more with ease.
What do you think about these soccer phonics activities? Did you give soccer phonics a go with your team players? We want to hear from you! Share your feedback in the comment section below.
If you're looking for more fun, educational activities to practice phonics skills with children, browse the Super Teacher Worksheets Phonics Collection.You may also like: