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Cooperative Group
Spelling Game



  • Language Arts
  • Science
  • Social Studies


  • 3-5
  • 6-8

Brief Description

Use newspapers to challenge students’ knowledge of their vocabulary and spelling words.


  • spell their spelling words correctly.
  • identify the correct vocabulary word according to the given defintion.


Newspaper, game, spelling, quiz, definition, vocabulary

Materials Needed

  • newspapers
  • glue
  • scissors
  • drawing paper

The Lesson

Students love these cooperative group activities; they learn quickly the importance of working cooperatively, solving problems, and developing strategies to accomplish their goals.

Arrange students into groups of 4 or 5 (depending on class size). One person from each group -- "the gluer" -- gets a piece of large drawing paper and glue. The other group members -- "the cutters" -- have scissors and a section of the newspaper.

Spelling Activity.
Students ("the cutters" on the team) use scissors to cut out from newspapers the letters that spell their spelling words; they cut as fast as they can. The object of this activity is for "the gluer" to get as many words as possible spelled correctly and glued down within a set amount of time. (The gluer isn't allowed to cut.) At the end of a set time limit, count each group's correctly spelled words. The group with the most words spelled correctly is declared the winner.

Reading, Science, or Social Studies Vocabulary Activity.
In this activity, the teacher calls out the definition of a vocabulary word and the cutters and gluer work together to spell out and glue down that word as quickly as they can. The word might be from the students' current science or social studies unit; from a piece of literature they are reading; or from their word bank or word wall. The team that is first to glue down the word, correctly spelled, earns a point. The team with the most points at the end of the activity period is declared the winner.


The teacher should monitor the students as they work. A rubric could be developed for this. However, usually the team that does the best job of working together ends up with the most points and is declared the winner.

Submitted By

Jane York, Chimneyrock Elementary School in Cordova, Tennessee

Education World®
Copyright © 2009 Education World
Originally published 04/08/2005
Last updated 05/25/2009