Let’s Play: Fun Vocabulary-Building Games for the Whole Family


Have you ever had a family game night? If not, now is a great time to start. Playing games together as a family is a wonderful way to bond, relax a bit, and have fun during these challenging times. 

We’re sharing two easy vocabulary-building games you can play as a family. For the printable game instructions, click here.

I’m Thinking of a Word…


Photographs, pictures, or objects that represent words may be used. (Pairing words with visuals offers more support for young children)


This game is very similar to “I Spy,” except clues include the meaning of words or examples of how the word is used.

  1. Parent explains: “I will tell you some information about the word, but I won’t say the word. It’s your job to tell me the word you think I’m talking about. Let me show you how…” 
  2. Provide the meaning of a target vocabulary word. Here’s an example: “I am thinking of a word that means you have to have help from someone because you can’t do it by yourself. Little babies can’t feed themselves so grown-ups have to feed them. We could say since babies can’t feed themselves they are ___________ on grownups.”
  3. The child provides the correct word, in this case, “dependent.”
  4. If the child is unable to come up with the word, provide more information, or even provide the first sound of the word or separate syllables of the word. /d/ or de…pen…dent.

Examples of Rich Vocabulary & Clues:

  • Excited: the way you feel when your birthday is coming soon
  • Exhausted: the way you feel when you are really, really super tired
  • Curious: the way you feel when you want to know more about something
  • Determined: the way you feel when you keep trying and don’t give up

Vocabulary Charades

We’ve turned this classic party game into a learning experience!


Objects around the house that may help provide clues for your vocabulary word.


An adult or older sibling thinks of a word that can be acted out without saying anything, then whispers it to the person whose turn it is to act out the word. That person then acts out the word while family members try to guess.

Examples of Rich Vocabulary & Acting Clues:

  • Comfort: use a doll to demonstrate ways to comfort a baby
  • Outgrown: try to fit into a coat that she/he has outgrown
  • Search: pretend to be looking carefully for something
  • Ignore: look away and pretend not to pay attention to anyone


Talk, Read, & Play

Finding ways to continue your children’s educational development doesn’t have to be boring. It’s as easy as Talk, Read, & Play! Want to discover more ways to Talk, Read, and Play? You can count on Cox Campus every day.

Talk, Read, & Play

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