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Teaching Context Clues With A Review Game That Kids Love

Teaching kids context clues is an important part of vocabulary instruction. Kids need to be taught how to figure out unknown words in their independent reading books. It increases their word knowledge which then increases their comprehension. I teach context clues throughout the year during my vocabulary instruction. I think it’s important for kids to practice using the clues in the text to help them infer the meanings of words.


Context Clues Game for Review

Every once in awhile I like to do a review game to make it more fun. Context clues can be a dry lesson if you just practice looking for clues to understand a word. Adding a fun game element to it helps kids enjoy practicing.

To get the kids excited, I like to play the theme song from the movie Mission Impossible. I tell them that the superheroes have been depleted of their powers and need our help getting put back together so they can get their powers back! In order to put their superheroes back together, they’ll need to answer some context clues questions.


Before the game, I set up 30 different sentences that include context clues around the room. I divide the class up into teams of 3 or 4. Their mission is to go around the room and answer the context clues questions. They walk around in teams with clipboards and a recording sheet or just a notebook, to keep track of their answers.

Throughout the game they get their answers checked by me. Once they have completed about 3 questions I check their answers. If they are correct, they earn some of the puzzle pieces for their superhero. If they aren’t, they need to correct their work before being able to earn their puzzle pieces.


When a team has earned all of their puzzle pieces, they put their superhero back together. I make a big production about how great it is that their superhero got their power back! They love saving their superhero and they get a power medal to color and wear for saving them.

This game can also be done online using Google forms. For each context clues question a student answers correctly, a puzzle piece of a superhero scene is revealed. When they finish, the whole superhero scene is revealed.


This is such an engaging way to review context clues!


If you’d like to learn about how I teach context clues throughout the year using picture books, check out my free vocabulary lesson resource that goes with the book Each Kindness.


This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Carmen

    Hi, did you have this in Spanish?

    1. Marlene

      Hi Carmen, no I’m sorry I don’t have any resources in Spanish.

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