The C-V-C Game
By Jacki Montierth
Current job is as a Computer Technology Teacher at
Southwest Junior High School in South San Diego.
Instructional Objective The learners shall be able to use a card game to practice and reinforce the use of consonants and vowels which will increase their ability to decode words.
A card game is an excellent way to teach decoding skills for two reasons. First, practice of the content is necessary for transfer as students continue to improve their reading and secondly, game formats allow for "instructional punctuation" in addition to providing activity-based instruction in the classroom.
Players may only lay down words at the beginning of their turn.
Proper names may not be formed.
Optional Uses The game can be used with individuals in a small group of four or less competing against each other or with the entire class where cooperative teams compete against each other. The second approach may be particularly beneficial in a heterogeneous classroom which includes special education students and is well suited when students have had limited practice with phonics.
* consonant cards
* vowel cards
* wild cards
* final e cards
The C-V-C card shown below is the design on the back of each card.
* 44 consonant cards (including blends)
* 15 vowel cards (including 3 of each vowel)
* 5 wild cards (which can be used as any vowel)
* 6 final e cards (used to make C-V-C-V words)
Design Process The concept of this card game was developed with the intention providing an enjoyable tool to teach C-V-C words to students who have previously been unsuccessful learning to decode words.
After deciding on the basic design of the game, it was necessary to determine how many cards of each type would be needed to allow for multiple successes of players. There needed to be enough vowel cards to allow players to form words frequently without making the game to easy.
To do this, a prototype was developed and played several times, changing the ratio of vowel cards to consonant cards each time. At this point the wild cards and final e cards were created to add another dimension to the game.
After several tries, the current ratio was found to be the best choice. Students who played the game with the current cards enjoyed the competition and felt successful. Every player made at least one word before the game ended.
During these trials, specific rules were also derived, particularly that a player can only lay down a word at the beginning of their turn, before they discard.