Play a grammar game with a fun take on “eye spy.”
My kids frequently played the normal, “I spy with my little eye” game when they were younger. I could entertain them at home, in the car, at restaurants, everywhere. The preschool that my older kids attended played this game when learning colors. The older two discarded that game some time ago so it’s been out of circulation at our house.
Cara (my two-year-old) is a tad young to play it, but I do goof around with her and the game. She mostly likes it when I sing- song, “I spy…” I do this lots when she needs occupied, like at her sister’s dance class.
Za has dance for fifty llllloooonnnggg minutes once a week. She loves it and I’m glad she has an activity where she can set goals and thrive. It is, however, truly a growth area for her older brother in his patience arena. He would rather not attend her dance class.
During the warmer weeks, we exhausted playing outside, playing tag, racing cars, walking around the building – anything to make the fifty minutes go a bit faster. Winter is yucky, so we sit for fifty minutes – either in the dance studio or in the car.
Ty takes advantage of my phone for some of this time, but of course his mother rarely has a charged battery. Onto our imaginations, when one day, I jokingly started “I spy” with him. He played twice, and shut me down because he is not a baby. Obviously.
Desperate moms and bored children call for something, because I jokingly told Ty that I spied a noun. He named them all: the shoes, people, chairs, ceiling, computer, windows, door, carpet, clock, and on.
Always ready to beat a dead horse, I spied adjectives for these nouns. Then we spied verbs, and adverbs to describe those verbs. And while he definitely would rather play on my phone, Ty did play our new I Spy Grammar Game.
Some guidelines that we established in our “I Spy Grammar Game”:
1. No being mean. We can use adjectives to describe people or things, but they need to be nice ones.
2. Add parts of speech together. For instance, “I spy a purple noun.” This can be a purple shirt, a purple grape, etc.
3. Be specific when dealing with verbs. For instance, when his sister bounded out of class, we remarked that she ran and skipped.
This small twist on “I Spy With My Little Eye” did entertain Ty and it is an easy, no prep way to fit grammar into your day.
I realize that some (I always get emails! Always!!) see my optimism in teaching grammar to the younger generation as unnecessary or a lost cause. I think that parents and teachers can incorporate grammar into simple games, simple discussions, and everyday happenings. I hope that this Eye Spy Grammar game helps.