Sunday, August 12, 2012

Show Me Sunday: Educational Time Fillers

Time for Show Me Sunday on 3-6 Free Resources
This month's theme: Educational Time Fillers
Teachers always grapple with what to do when we've got a few extra minutes between lessons or suddenly the movie we planned on showing won't stream through Netflix (Grrrr!!).  It's always a good plan to have few ideas in your back pocket for those moments. So here are my top 3 educational time fillers:

This is a fun site that donates rice for submitting correct answers.  I display it on our Promethean Board and have students take turns answering questions to see how quicky we can fill our bowl. Our favorite subjects are Vocab, Grammar, Geography and Multiplication Tables.  (Plus, it's for a good cause!)

2. Hot Seat
There are several variations of this game, but this is the version that has worked best for me...
1. Divide your class into two teams with everyone facing the board.
2. Place one student from each team in a "hot seat" - the two chairs or stools that are placed in front of the class with their backs to the board.
3. Write a vocab word on the board.
4. Each team gives the person in the hot seat clues to help hem guess the word - synonyms, antonyms, definition, examples, etc...  Whichever group gets their teammate in the hot seat to say the word first wins a point. Then repeat with two other students in the hot seat.

3. Mad Libs
Kids think they're just making up silly stories, but really it's sneaky parts of speech review. I always have several class copies of them available just in case.  :-)

Honorable Mentions:
Sparkle, Mum-ball with mentioning key facts about a topic, free reading and read alouds. What are your go-to time fillers?

Gather some other time-filler ideas and join the Linky Party right here!


  1. I use all of those. My kids love, love hot seat and free rice the best! I also use I spy when we are waiting in lines.

    What's Mum-ball?

    Inside this Book

    1. I Spy is a great idea, too! Mum-ball is basically a ball throwing game but all the students have to be "mum" (quiet) or they are out. They sit on their desks and toss the ball to each other and if it hits the floor due to a bad throw, the thrower is out and has to sit in their chair. If the catcher just missed it, they are out. If someone talks, they are out as well. It's nice when you need a quiet but active game - great for when your class is done with an exam but the next room is still taking it!

  2. I will definitely try Hot Seat as a vocabulary review game. Thanks!

    Justin Greene

  3. Thanks for sharing!! Those are really great ideas! I especially love Hot Seat! That will be excellent for vocabulary review!! I also can't wait to try FreeRice! I think the students will really enjoy playing a game AND helping others!!

    1. Thanks for stopping by Hilary! I'd love to hear what you think of Hot Seat. :-)


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