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Gail S Hennessey's picture
Gail Skroback Hennessey taught for over 33 years, teaching sixth grade in all but two years. She earned a BA in early secondary education with a concentration in social studies and an MST in social...
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Review Games for Upper Elementary/Middle School

Heree are some popular review activities I found successful to use in the classroom.

1. HISTO: A vocabulary review game which is like bingo. Students use a word list and fill in a bingo grid(six box for a short review or 16 for a larger review). The game board can be used for several games. I usually have them place the letter H for my name for the first round~ perhaps~ an X~ a smiley face~ etc. The teacher gives a definition and if they have the word on their board(usually have one or two extras on the world list)~ they place the appropriate marker. The student(students) with 3(or 4 if using 16 boxes) across~ down or diagonally~ stand saying Histo. In order to win the round~ the student (s) must say the word and give a definition.

2. Hot Potato: This is like musical chairs. Have an alarm that can be set to go off in a couple of seconds or wind up a music box or anything that can make a noise. Have the students stand or sit in a row and continue to pass the item that is making the noise. When the noise stops~ the student with the item is asked a question about the lesson. If they dont know the answer~ they are out of the round. Continue until there is a winner.
History Bee: Have the students stand by their desks. Begin by asking questions. If the student doesnt know the answer they are to sit down. Continue asking the question until the answer is correct. Ask another question. Continue the same pattern. The student still standing at the end of the round wins. * If~ you ask a question which no student can answer correctly~ all the students who sat down for the particular question get to stand back up and another question is asked.

4. WHO~ WHAT~ WHERE am I : Before class~ place different terms for the unit of study on index cards. The terms can be famous people for the unit~ places and things(terms). With masking tape~ place an index card onto each of the students backs. Explain they can only ask questions that can be answered with a yes or no. Have the students circulate amongst the class trying to figure out the term on their back. Once they have identified the card~ give them a point and ANOTHER index card on their back. Continue with the students with the most identified cards~ the winners.

5. Concentration: Make cards( or have groups of students make their own cards of a term on one index card and the definition on another card). Shuffle the cards when done and place on the floor or a desktop. Groups of students take turns trying to find pairs(term/meaning)~ taking the pairs for each they have correctly identified. Play the round until the cards have all been identified.

6. Bluff: Divide the class into two or three teams. Explain that you will ask the students a question. All the students in the group being asked the question that know the answer are to quietly stand. Anyone that wants to bluff they know the answer~ can stand as well. The teacher picks a standing student. If the student knows the answer~ the team is awarded the number of points for the amount of students standing. If~ incorrect~ the team loses the number of points for the amount of students standing. The team with the most point wins the round.

7. Play the game show Jeopardy:

8. Play a game based on HangMan: Instead of hanging a person~ make a pumpkin~ snowman~ or some other picture which you add parts as the answers are correct~ making it a positive drawing. *Before playing~ show a picture of a completed drawing.

9. Play a variation of Deal or No Deal: Place 10-15 large index cards on the chalkboard with various points for 5-100. Also place a couple of cards which say double points~ triple points or take away half your points. Divide the students into two or three teams. Have the students on each team take turns answering a question. After they answer~ have the student pick the amount of points they have earned for a correct answer. If they have earned one of the special cards~ they can use on another turn.

10. GRIDLOCK: This activity is a fun research activity. Make a grid of 5 topics( for example: Country of the World~ Famous scientist~ capital of the world~ famous place to visit~ River of the world). Then~ make a list going downward with 5-7 letters. Students using reference materials with a partner try and find as many topics that start with the letters given.
See example
Country of the World /Famous Scientist/ Capital of the World/ Famous Place River

Gail Hennessey