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Literacy Games: Activities for Learning and Play During the Holidays

Updated: Jun 2, 2023

As teachers, we spend a ton of time planning for our learners. For us, ensuring that our

programming is evidence-based, and tons of fun are our priorities.

We know that giving children tools to develop phonological awareness skills is essential

to them becoming proficient readers. We know children practising fine motor skills

is essential when priming them for handwriting. We know that tuning into books builds

strong vocabulary. So, here are some simple games and activities that support building

literacy skills and help to beat boredom during the holidays.

Educational games for kids

Rhyming games

1. I Spy: Head outside for a game of I spy...but make it rhyme.

Example “I spy with my little eye, something that rhymes with peas...trees!”

2. Rhyming tennis: With a partner, pick a short word. Player one says that word and player two says a rhyming word.

Go back and forth until you run out of rhymes. You can use made-up words too!


Player 1 dog

Player 2 log

Player 1 fog

Player 2 mog...and so on!

Alliteration games

1. Animal Alliteration

Pick an animal, now think of a sentence with as many words that share the animal first

sound as you can.

Example: Sally Snake sniffs silver seashells or Albert Alligator Acts Amazed!

Syllable games

1. Syllable Stomp

Syllables are the beats we hear in words. To play, grab a collection of different


Pick one, now, say the whole word and stomp at each beat.

Example: ca/rrot has two beats, zu/cchi/ni has three beats.

Other educational literacy games

1. Sound Hunt

Head to the beach, park or pool. Write a list or draw a picture of something you find

beginning with each SOUND below...remember, we are listening for sounds, not letter

names. Feel free to add more sounds to the list!

s, a, t, p, i, n.

2. Odd One Out

Listen for the FIRST sound in these words:

-sun, slipper, moon

-man, pool, map

-ant, snake, apple

Which is the odd one out?

#TIP stretch out the first sounds to hear them clearly.

3. Book Chat

Choose a shady spot and grab a pile of your favourite books. Flick through the pages

and enjoy the pictures and words. Retell the story to a friend!

If you’d like to get your hands on our free Reading Ready Booklet, head to our socials to

download our booklet full of literacy activities for learning and play. It will best suit

preschool and early primary learners.

SailAway Readers preschool classes are dedicated to supporting children in learning letter

sounds, build vocabulary and oral language, develop phonological awareness skills, and further

develop social and emotional skills and enhance fine motor control for handwriting.

When children are confident in these areas, their transition to school is smoother.

For primary school learners, we run after-school sessions that follow an evidence-based

approach to supporting children to read, write and spell.

For more information, visit our socials @sailawayreaders or

This article was written by our literacy experts Nat Brass and Sarah Hughes. To learn more, purchase our Parenting Portal; our library of stage-based videos, expert guides and demonstrations or secure your spot at one of our upcoming parental education masterclasses.

Child practising phonological awareness, alliteration, and syllable skills


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