Here’s a great game to play with a 2nd to 5th grade school age group. It’s a good activity to do towards the end of your program - or just last, since it gets pretty crazy sometimes.
Print out two full page letters for S, T, O and P. They should be big so the audience can read them. Having one set of different colored paper helps to distinguish teams. You can laminate these if you plan on doing this game often.
Starting this game by saying “Lets, see who is smarter, boys or girls…” always gets them talking and excited.
Ask for volunteers, 4 boys and 4 girls. You can say you need four of the smartest boys / girls. You’ll have them line up front next to their teamates – ie. four girls then four boys. Pass out the letter cards, one to each person on each team. Have them hold the cards facing out. Make sure you have the teams and audience quiet as you explain the rules. You’ll be paying the most attention to the teams, so mention to the audience that they need to listen too so they understand the game.
As you call out various words, each team will move it’s members around (holding the letters) to spell the word. They need to spell it from left to right so the audience can read it. To explain this humorously, you can read whatever the team has already spelled out – pronoucing whatever funny nonsensical word being created. “For example, right now the boys are spelling tsop.”
Ask for a volunteer to keep score as well – “Who here can count to a million?” or “Who has more than ten fingers?” etc
Go through each of the words, having the team spell the words you call out. The words are SPOT, TOPS, STOP, POTS, and OPTS. Tell them you’ll only say each word once. You can build up alot of suspense right before you say the word – such as. “The next word is…….” You can also ask them to spell eskimo or cabbage, and see them First team to spell each word gets a point. Have the scorekeeper reiterate the score after each word each time. You may have to quiet everyone down each time by yelling in sportcaster voice “scccoooorreeeeekeeeeeeeeeper – whats the score!?”. Refer to the teacher for tiebreakers on “who spelled it first?” situations.
After going through those words, announce the bonus word round. Make up a silly large number of how many points this will be. Then have them spell “DOTS.” The person on each team holding the “P” will eventually figure out they need to turn their letter upside down, either on their own, or because every kid in the room will be yelling “turn the P upside down!”
Have the scorekeeper announce the new crazy score.
Now we all know who is smarter!