Bullseye and Other Games for Learning

I definitely hit the target with today's games!

The boys had so much fun this morning.

We started school by working on our math facts.

For the older two boys I went through all our multiplication flash cards and pulled out the four times tables cards for Ian and the five times table cards for Alec.  Using just a tiny bit of tape I taped them to two different parts of our living room walls (I only used enough tape to make them stick but I still wanted them to be able to lift them and check their answers on the back).

I then had Ian grab his Nerf gun and told him to aim at the flashcards and call out the answers to the equation he hit.

Alec doesn't really like guns so I told him he could use a gun or perhaps a ball and play catch, but he asked if he could use the nose of Fennekin to point at the cards and call them out.  He spun himself around in circles and when he stopped he'd call out whichever card his Pokémon was pointing at.  He just adores Pokémon and I try to let him incorporate them as much as possible into our schoolwork.  I love to follow their passions and use them to further their learning. 

I think they liked this even better than the Black Hole Multiplication game we played yesterday Basically we set up all the flashcards in a spiral pattern and using a dice and a counter marker they made their way through the black hole.

Alec is actually the one that came up with the name for our game today and I just loved it; they pretended their counters were ships trying to escape the black hole.  I wish I had thought to have them get some ships to use and make it even more fun.

The boys chose whether to play from the outside in or the inside out (they couldn't agree and so they ended up playing two games; one each way).  They rolled the dice on their turn, moved their counter marker to the correct space on the "board" and if they got the equation right, they stayed in their spot, if they got it wrong they had to go back (they never got one wrong!).

The first one to get to the last card won.

 Evan was practicing his subtraction facts today after making long sticks of numbers showing addition facts yesterday.

I set up 12 plastic cups in a pyramid shape and he would shoot the cups with his Nerf gun.  He would then tell me how many cups he knocked over and how many cups he had left and then we'd put it into an addition sentence.

He found that if he aimed higher he's only knock one or two cups off, but if he aimed lower he could knock as many as 6 or 7 cups off the table.  He had great fun with this and soon his older brothers joined him drawn by the PLUNK! sound the cups made as the Nerf bullets hit them.

Seeing the appeal of the cups I pulled all the rest of the party cups we had out of the pantry and they spent a good portion of the morning building structures out of plastic cups.  They made towers, cages and houses.  Alec and Evan pulled their stuffed animals down and tried to make homes for them.  Ian pulled out his Nerf gun and tested his structures to see how sturdy he could make them.

Alec and Evan making houses

Alec's house all completed

his animals live inside; we really needed a door!
We had even more fun with the plastic cups; I took a dozen or so and wrote sight words on them.  Ian and I set them up all over the living room and as Evan read the sight words to us he would knock them off the couch using his Indiana Jones whip.  He had so much fun with this activity and wow! can that boy wield a whip!

Whip that word!
I think he too enjoyed this much more than our sight word tic tac toe game from yesterday.

I wrote sight words on cupcake liners, put them in each of the muffin tin cups and got a ping pong ball from our basement.  We each took turns rolling the ping pong ball into a cup and reading the word.

 If we read the sight word correctly we got to put a pom pom in the cup and the first one to get three in a row would win. 

I pulled out an empty ice cube tray and told them all about our science experiment for the day-- "What freezes?"

I had them rummage through the kitchen and pick out liquids (or semi- liquids) that they'd like to try and freeze.  We filled each section of the ice cube tray with something different and then we sat back to predict what would freeze first, what would freeze last, if there was anything we thought wouldn't freeze at all.

We discussed why they made the predictions they made.  We used:  dish soap, water, milk, orange juice, thousand island dressing, ketchup, sour cream, mustard, vinegar, olive oil, maple syrup, chocolate syrup, and honey.

Alec predicted anything that was made up of a lot of water would freeze faster than the things that were more solid like ketchup, mustard and sour cream.  All the boys agreed that they thought the water would freeze first, but Ian thought that they honey and chocolate syrup would take longer.  We put it in the freezer and set the timer for 20 minutes increments; checking to see if anything had happened.

so far; predictions are right on target!  We have an ice cube and a milk cube.

 For spelling the two older boys wanted to play Word Wave again.

I was amazed when Alec came up with words like haul, snit, and violet!   They made a lot more words today and even managed to add letters to existing words that they were able to steal from one another.  I was asked a lot of "is this a word?"  or "how do you spell...?" but they were learning, engaged and having fun.  Alec continued to play with the machine while I heated up lunch. He didn't keep the words or keep score but he'd call out the words and spell out the letters he was using then put them in a huge pile near himself.  I love that he continually tries to challenge himself.

The boys all agreed that they wanted to play The Scrambled States of America game for geography.  We typically give Evan a few extra minutes to come up with some answers to the game since he still can't read and he needs that little bit of help to keep the game fair.  I noticed a huge improvement in his playing today.  He was often able to sound out the names of the states, he quickly found the states on the United States map and a few times beat his brothers in shouting out his answers.  It ended up being a very close game with Alec winning by one point!


  1. These look like great learning games. I love how they all used the same resource (the plastic cups) but n such different ways. #familyfunlinky

    1. Thanks! I do like to look for way to re-use many of our materials.

  2. What a marvellous insight into your morning school games. I try and do things that interest my son as he is into something. It makes him cooperate more and then learns. I love the cup towers, think that's my favourite! ‪Thank you for linking up to the #familyfunlinky‬

    1. Yep, doing things that interest them always leads to better lessons learned.


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