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Boredom, R.I.P.

Do you, or your students, ever feel like the cobwebs are piling up on you? While daylight is getting shorter, the days are feeling longer and longer? The bats of boredom are flying around and you just cannot chase them out?

Some times the zombie repellent in the classroom cauldron needs needs stirred up a bit. Using the free online trial of Bingo Card Creator to create a set of bingo cards is the first step to keeping the zombies at bay. Or, if you are in a hurry, download 8 free Halloween bingo cards to print and start playing.

Once you and your students become pros at bingo, or if you already are, you might to need to try some variations to keep things fresh. Here are a few variations and suggestions to make the bingo games more interesting.

Have the winner be the caller for the next game. Kids always love a chance to do something special. Letting the winner be the caller is a great reward and it helps reduce the odds of one person winning multiple times.

Give an extra prize if the winner has Bingo more than one way.  This is a great strategy teaching tool. The kids will have to decide if they should yell “Bingo” as soon as they have a row, column, etc. or if they should wait and try to get bingo another way and win a better prize. See Spooktacular Bingo Variations for variations on winning patterns.

Allow multiple winners per round. This is a great idea especially if your students are younger and still learning to read. You might allow 1 to 5 winners, for example, per game. This helps keep interest up and improves everyone’s chances of winning a prize. It also helps level the playing field for kids who do not read as fast or have trouble finding the words on the card.


Spooktacular Bingo Variations

Ahh Halloween…there is a chill in the air and a far-away howl echoing through the trees. As the days countdown, each becomes a little more spooky. With all the costumes, the parties, and the gobs of candy beckoning, it can be hard to keep your students paying attention to you.

Just like other activities, some times you need a new shock for your bingo game to keep it spooktacular. A great way to clear out the cobwebs, and keep the little monsters from becoming zombies, is to allow different winning bingo configurations in addition to the standard horizontal, vertical, and diagonal lines.

The first step is to use the free online trial of Bingo Card Creator to create a set of bingo cards. To get started even faster, download 8 free Halloween bingo cards to print and start playing.

Christmas Bingo Card

Spooktacular Bingo Variations

Here is a list of bingo variations to get you started:

1 Four Corners. Pretty self-explanatory. Cover the four corners of the card.

2 The Box. Fill the four lines around the outside of the bingo card.

3 The Little Box. Fill the center square and the eight squares surrounding it.

4 X Marks The Spot.  Fill both diagonals running through the center square.

5 The Cross. Fill both the vertical and horizontal lines that run through the middle square, also known as The Plus.

6 Rows. Starting with the first row, fill the first, third, and fifth rows. Or, fill the second and fourth rows, maybe for a smaller prize.

7 Stripes. Same rules as above, but use for the vertical. Also known as columns.

8 Blackout. Another self-explanatory variation. Blackout your card by filling every square. This variation can also be called Coverall.

9 Letter Bingo. Create patterns for each letter of the alphabet, or even better, let your students figure out patterns for each letter.

After playing a few games and trying some of the variation above, your students will very likely have new ideas of their own on how to make the game better. Encourage them to explore and innovate by allowing them to create their own variations and then trying them out on the whole class.