Word Race

Thinking & Engaging
Thinking & Engaging

Groups race to spell a list of words using objects and equipment provided.


  • A list of words
  • A variety of objects and equipment (ie. skipping ropes, beanbags, pylons, hoops, balls, etc.)


Designate an object area, where all of the objects and equipment will be located. Designate an area for each group that is around 10-15 meters from the object area. The goal of this activity is for groups to spell the list of words, and for the “guesser” (one participant in each group) to guess the words that are being spelled.


  1. Divide participants into groups of 3-4 participants.
  2. Each group will select which participant will start as the guesser, and all of the guessers will go to a designated area and play catch, kick a soccer ball around, do exercises, jog on the spot, or any activity, so long as they are not too close to the other participants, and cannot hear them.
  3. The other participants will be the spellers.
  4. One participant from each group will run to the leader, who will be holding a list of 2-4 words, and then run back to their group members and whisper the words to them. 
  5. One at a time, one participant from each group will run to the object area and collect one object, run back to their group’s area and place the object down, and then the next participant runs to the object area and collects one object.
  6. Participants have to spell the word using the objects they collect.
  7. If they need a reminder of a word, a participant can run to the leader to look at the list of words again.
  8. When a group is done spelling the words, they will raise their hands and yell “Done!”, or “Words!”, or another word, and the leader will call over that group’s guesser.
  9. The guesser will run over and whisper the words to the leader (or say them quietly so the other guessers don’t hear).
  10. If they are correct, then that group wins or they get first, and the other groups continue.
  11. If they are incorrect, then they can either be out, or they get a 1 minute penalty, and can’t collect new objects until the minute is up.
  12. Switch the guesser for the next round.


  • Only have use 1 or 2 words, or have participants create just letters, numbers, and/or symbols ($, %, #, etc.)
  • Groups can use themselves to create letters.
  • The leader will ask a question such as: “What colour do red and blue make when mixed together?”, and groups have to collect objects one at a time to spell the answer (green), and when they have it spelt, they will call “Done!”, and the leader will go over and see if it is a) legible and b) correct.


  • Remove any safety hazards and obstacles from the activity area remind participants to be aware of their surroundings and to keep their head up.


No wrap-up is necessary for this activity.

Adapted from: http://activeafterschool.ca/activities/word-race