Where has this game been all of my life?
Phonics Dominoes is a fantastic way to practice word-building and decoding skills. There are several versions available: Short Vowels, Long Vowels, Blends and Digraphs, Word-Building, and for more advanced students, Sentence-Building dominoes.
In this post, we’re reviewing the Short Vowels version.
These sturdy dominoes come in six bright colors and are the perfect size for small hands. Each tile contains a single consonant and a combination of two or three letters, allowing them to be combined in hundreds of ways. Instructions are provided for five different games. Several of the variations require at least two players, but you can easily adjust the rules so they work for a single student. The suggested age range is 6-9.
One way to play Short Vowel Dominoes is Word Train. Let’s play! Pick one player to be the dealer. The dealer starts the game by dealing five tiles to every player, including himself. Everyone then stands their tiles on edge so no one else can see them.
The dealer starts play by placing one tile in the center of the table.
Now it’s time to make a word train! Each player has a chance to make a word by placing one of his tiles before or after the tiles already on the table.
For example, the first player plays one of his tiles to build the word hat.
The next player adds her od/r tile and builds the word rug. Now it’s your turn and you play your ub/r tile to build the word rod.
Great job! See how the train gets longer with every turn?
Now it’s your turn again…but look! None of your tiles can be added to the word train!
You have to take another tile and add it to your tiles. Your turn is over, but don’t worry—you get to play again in the next round.
The first player to play all his tiles wins the game.
Does your family have a favorite board game that is a fun and “sneaky” way to build language skills? Please share in the comments below!