Stories, books, plays, poems and word games all play an important part in my life. I know what a joy it is to curl up with a book, as well as the “eureka!” feeling of discovering something new from a factual book. However, it took me a long time, as a child, to realize that reading was anything other than a difficult chore.

So, I thought I would share with you some literacy games I play on the move, be it in a car, walking along or riding a bus. Games that help make language fun.


  • I SPY, try the usual “I spy with my little eye something beginning with (add a sound that your child has been working on)

With young children, try colour or shape I spy: I spy with my little eye something that is green/round etc

Or for more of a challenge try endings I spy: I spy with my little eye something that ends in the sound “d” or “t”



SING FAMILIAR SONGS such as Row, Row, Row Your Boat then change the words eg Ride, Ride, Ride Your Bike; Honk, Honk, Honk Your Horn



As you travel around, play games with words that rhyme.

Try to say a word and find other words that rhyme with it. Then use the rhyming words in a sentence (the sillier the better) eg The hog in the fog spoke to the frog on a log in the bog.

Find words that rhyme with your children’s names or people you know, Mike/bike, Sam/jam, Tim/swim.



Play this game to help the miles go faster.

Think of a password to get into a special place. Describe the password, its colour, shape, size, what it feels like and whether it sounds like another word. The password could be a favourite toy, animal, cartoon character, book or place.



Someone starts a list with a sentence such as, “We went to the zoo and saw an elephant.” The next person repeats the sentence and adds another animal, “We went to the zoo and saw an elephant and a snake.” Continue to add items to your list and help each other remember the order

Try other lists such as:

“We went to market and bought…”

“We went to Hawaii/the cabin/ the campground and packed…”



As the weather gets colder and windows steam up have your child, make scribbles then draw shapes, numbers and letters on the glass.

Then give your child a cloth to wipe the window clean!


Wherever you go, have fun with words, their sounds and meanings.