10 Sample Writing Games

By Brent R. Evans, Copyright Ó 1999 - 2002  http://www.learningsuccess.com



Games can be powerful tools that significantly boost personal development, learning achievement, and school success if:

1. The games are specially designed to develop important abilities or teach specific skills or concepts. When a collection of games is organized to cover a complete subject, then the games become a tremendous support system that practically assures success. This is particularly true when a quick test and recording system provides the tracking of each player’s progress and continually pinpoints his or her best current learning opportunities. It also makes sure no important writing skills are missed. What advantage can this be for your child? Well, consider that even a 5% increase in learning rate during a child’s school career can result in a three-year advantage by the end of high school due to the power of compounding! Truly, even small differences can result in greatly increased success opportunities!

2. The games are designed to put into instant action powerful teaching methods and particular learning principles, conditions, and strategies that would best teach or develop each specific skill or concept. This means parents do not have to be professional teachers or learning experts to provide the best learning conditions for their children. Even professional teachers at school can extend their impact to additional individuals and small groups within the classroom without one-to-one assistance and still be assured each learning activity is appropriate, effective, and targeted to specific learning objectives.  An added advantage is that players become increasingly aware of the power of learning strategies and start making it a habit to apply these same principles in other learning situations.

3. The games are fun! This means players will want to spend many extra hours developing the skills the games are targeted to achieve. Time spent playing the games will not be experienced as work or study!

4. The games are instantly available and require no hard-to-store pieces. The best games are game ideas that use items that are usually around anyway, like paper, pencils, dice, cards, etc. This means players have instant access to all of the games and do not need to learn complex instructions.

5. The games are economical and you do not need to continually buy new ones as your child progresses from grade to grade. For example, in the Learning Success Writing Games for School Success book, there are over 350 games covering the most important writing skills from pre-school through the eighth grade. It is a complete support system for each child through all of those years!


Pre-Writing and Visual-Motor Skills


Draw What You Want - For a certain time period, players may communicate only through pictures. If they want something, they have to draw a picture of it. If they want to do something, they must draw a picture of it. No words allowed.




Letter Hook-Ups - Two players use one sheet of paper. Players each write or print the letters of the alphabet scattered about on the sheet of paper. They then take turns drawing a line connecting matching letters. For example, from one b to the other b. A player loses the game if he runs into or crosses a line or letter already drawn. Player able to make the last successful hook-up wins. A single player may play by preparing his playing sheet and then trying to go through the alphabet in order connecting the letters without touching any lines. The last letter he is able to get to successfully is his score. Next time he tries to get a higher letter or the entire alphabet.




Write Until Wrong - Players start writing a list of words. They may write any words they choose, but must stop when they misspell a word. If in doubt whether a player has mad a spelling error, consult a dictionary. Count the number of words spelled correctly before the first mistake. That is the player’s score. When everyone is ready, start a new round with and have players write new lists. Players could try to beat their previous best scores or could by to win the game by achieving a higher score than the other players. Alternatives include choosing categories of words that may be included on lists, such as five-letter words, items you could buy in a store, colors, adjectives, verbs, etc. The same basic game could be played by having players write stories until they make their first spelling mistake, and then counting the words successfully written.




COOPERATIVE STORIES - Players try to write a story together with the rule being that each player may write only one word on each of his turns. No talking about either the sentences or story is allowed. Each word added must fit what has been written before and be in correct sentence structure. When finished, read the story aloud for enjoyment.

exact-number sentences - Group decides on a series of numbers, such as 5, 8, 3, 4, 7, 6, 2, 9.  First player to write a story in which the number of words in each sentence equals the numbers listed and in the same order, wins. With the example above, the first sentence must contain 5 words. No more, no less. The second sentence must contain exactly 8 words, and so on.


Punctuation and Capitalization


PUNCTUATION STORIES - Copy the punctuation marks you find in a paragraph, story, or newspaper article.  Now, try to write the beginning of a story using those same punctuation marks in the same order you found them.  Try it with the punctuation marks below:

. , , . . " , " , " . " . , .

capitalization stories - Copy the capital letters only you find in a paragraph, story, or newspaper article.  Now, try to write the beginning of a story using those same capital letters used appropriately and in the same order you found them.  Try it with the capital letters below:

O  T  C  I  M  M  C  O  M  M  M  M


Clear and Effective Writing


GOSSIP - One player reads a story in a book and then tries to write the story himself.  Next player reads the first player's written story, then turns it over and tries to write that story.  Third player reads what the second player wrote, turns it over and tries to write the same story, etc.  This continues until all players have had a chance to write the story.  Have a lot of fun reading the original story and attempts to duplicate it out loud in the same order they were written.

WRITE WHAT YOU WANT - Each morning have your child write a list of things he or she wants to do that day.  The list should be in sentences such as:  "After breakfast I want to go to Billy's house."  "This afternoon I want to go swimming."  Help him spell any words he needs.  When he is finished, have him read the list to you.




STORY TITLES BY CHANCE - Players first create a set of story possibilities as shown below.  Throwing two dice, a player by chance determines his story assignment.  For example:  he rolls the dice and it adds up to 4 the first time.  He rolls the dice again and it comes up 7.  His story title becomes, "An Old Shoe's Problem."  Creating the titles and experiencing the many story possibilities is a fun way to develop creative thought.



2 - An Apple's

3 - My Grandfather's

4 - An Old Shoe's

5 - A Dog's

6 - My Pet Monster's

7 - The Stranger's

8 - My TV's

9 - The Hero's

10 - My Enemy's

11 - The Policeman's

12 - Dad's Favorite Chair's


2 - Dream

3 - Secret

4 - Birthday Party

5 - Best Friend

6 - Biggest Worry

7 - Problem

8 - Finest Hour

9 - Reward

10 - Plan for Success

11 - Story of Courage

12 - Strange Past


An Added Suggestion


Make it a Family Tradition to Take Time to Write - Make it a habit in your family to schedule special time for writing. You might call this SWATT (Sustained Writing and Thinking Time). There are many ways to use this time, including writing in your journal, writing appreciation notes, making written requests and plans, poetry, letter exchanges, family newsletter, putting your thoughts in writing, etc. Think of occasions when special letters, notes, or cards would add to the lives of other people.  The list should include:  birthdays, holidays, anniversaries, when someone is ill or away, congratulations, etc.  Prepare a calendar to remind everyone of dates when letters or cards should be sent.  Try to make each letter or card special.  As a family, bring in some of the letters received and share them and personal feelings about receiving them.


For more than 340 more games and activities to develop reading skills,

order Writing Games for School Success.

You will then have the tools you need to significantly increase your child’s writing achievement.  You will have:

(1)  A clear explanation of the sequence of writing skills important for your child to learn from pre-school through junior high.

(2)  Simple tests to quickly evaluate what skills your child has learned and what he or she needs to learn next.

(3)  Fun games the whole family can enjoy to teach each writing skill and designed to put powerful learning principles and strategies to work for your child.


The cost is only $24.95.    Click Here to Order Now

To order by phone: 1-800-919-LEARN or 408-379-6872

To order by mail:  Write us at Learning Success, 1558 La Pradera Drive, Campbell, California 95008

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