Dreary Day Distractions

Last week, the days were gorgeous. We’ve been busy starting seeds, watering seeds, prepping the garden, taking care of the new pullets and the old hens, running through the backyard maze and finding any excuse to get outside and avoid housework. (As if I need help in that quarter.)

But…the weather has turned back to the dreary, cold and wet of early Spring and we are stuck inside. Again.

In order to keep busy and avoid insanity, we’ve been playing games.

Joe wanted to play the word shooting game. It took me a little while to understand what he was talking about.

“I want to play the word shot game.”

“What game is that?”

“You know, the game with the words.”


“The game with the words and the red cups.”


We have site word dice so I added a new element to the game. I wrote the words from the die and then taped them on red solo cups.


Then, Joe rolled the die, sounded the word out and then shot the matching cup. He recognized quite a few and was able to get a few more by sounding them out.


After all the cups were obliterated, he shot the die off the table and wanted to play again. This kept us busy and laughing for awhile.


Since Joe is getting back into bugs, I found a caterpillar phonics game on one of my favorite blogs – Relentlessly Fun, Deceptively Educational.


The point of the game is recognizing beginning letter sounds.

For the first round I showed both boys the word. Joe sounded it out and said the word (with help) and Jake said the letter. Then, if they had the letter on their caterpillar card, they covered it with Banangram tiles. The first to get all letters covered yells “Caterpillar!”

This part was a little difficult to explain. Jake yelled “Caterpillar!” after every letter was covered which frustrated Joe.

“He’s playing it wrong!”

“He’s learning buddy, help show him how to play.”

There were a lot of frustrated sounds and sighs before he started to help by modeling the rules of the game.

For the second round, I read the word phonetically but did not show it to the boys. Joe did a great job recognizing the letter . Jake, rather than playing, repeated the letter sound after I said it.

Joe even started to find the corresponding letter on the Banagram tiles.

We’ve also played Candy Land, traced mazes and started to learn shapes.

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It’s been fun and a great distraction from the dull and drab weather. It’s been so fun that this morning, instead of asking “can we go outside yet?”, Joe asked me…

“What are we going to do today, Mom? Can we do an experiment?”

“Of course we can!”





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