Amazing Hacks for Easy Literacy Centers

Back to school time is almost here and I wanted to share a couple of fun ideas for interactive literacy centers with you! You don’t need to spend all day trying to create the latest, greatest new word work games. Kids love interactive activities and the two I’m going to show you are easy to prepare and cost next to nothing (especially if you grab them at a dollar store or during Amazon Prime days).

Use Connecting Cubes to make a Word Game

Match students with a partner or small group. Have each student choose five to six blocks and challenge them to make words. Write on sticky labels or save money by purchasing building blocks at a dollar store, then write directly on the blocks with a permanent marker. Now you have a simple and interactive word building activity!

Multi-colored Linking Cubes in multi-colors boost engagement

Ping-Pong Ball Word Families & Consonant Blends

Here’s another attention-grabbing phonics activity. First, write different letters on ping-pong balls. Next, label a paper/plastic bag on the outside. One should say “vowels” and the other “consonants”. Have your students pull a few balls out of each bag and try to make a word.

Use white ping pong balls and velcro dots connected together

My students love to try different letter combinations and are never bored with this center. You can use velcro dots to connect the ping-pong balls together.

Use velcro dots to connect the letters

I think it is important for students to record the words they create (multi-sensory learning helps processing), so I have students write on dry-erase boards or in a journal.

Have students record words in word journals like these.

You Can’t Go Wrong with Dry-erase Boards

I use dry erase boards for word work and syllable division in large and small group settings. Have students work out their answers individually and then hold them up for you to review.  Dry-erase boards, like the ones pictured below, can be expensive, so check dollar store deals and Amazon Prime Day for great value.

Use dry-erase boards for word work

I hope these ideas have been helpful to you, or at the very least, have inspired you to come up with some of your own. Happy teaching!


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