Reviewing with games is always more fun for students than review packets or worksheets. Games get kids excited and build upon their competitive instincts to make reviewing material more engaging and impactful.
Traditional classroom review games like Pictionary, Jeopardy, and Kahoot/Gimkit/Quizizz are great. Kids know how to play, love them, and they're easy to implement. My curricula has these review games already made for each unit.
However, it's good to change things up every so often to keep kids excited and engaged. That's why every so often, we'll play my favorite review game - Review Clue!
Clue has always been one of my all-time favorite movies ("Two corpses. Everything's fine."). Sadly no students have seen it, so my wealth of quotes is lost on them. BUT it's super easy to play in any subject!
It's played similarly to the famous board game (which is apparently known as Cluedo is some parts of the word).
No matter what your subject or unit is, you can have a great game of Review Clue with just a little prep.
First, break down the vocabulary you need to cover into 3 categories: People, Places, & Things. Between 5-10 words for each category is good to keep the game from being too easy or difficult. That also allows you to play a few times, selecting different terms each time.
I create game cards with the vocab words in each category that look like the traditional board game notebook:
You can create those pretty easily in Word or download editable versions to fill in with your own vocabulary here.
Next, place students into groups to attempt to solve the case by determining a victim, location, and murder weapon.
You just have to come up with clues that give a little away, but leave enough doubt that it can be a few different answers. Students get clues by going to different rooms on the projected game board.
I have a giant foam dice that kids roll at their desk just to make it a little more fun. However, that part can be skipped and you can just have students decide which kind of clue they want for each turn (location, weapon, or suspect).
Before we start the game, I select a location, weapon, and suspect for that round. So, for a Gilded Age unit, the winner might be "John D. Rockefeller with the Cross of Gold in Ellis Island."
As the game begins, I come up with hints for each one as we move through the game. The hints start vague like, "The killer was wealthy." and progress to more specific info students should know.
Students should be able to eliminate vocab terms based on your clues and eventually determine the right answer.
It does require you to think on the fly for coming up with clues that give a little away but not too much. You can always speed the game up by giving obvious clues. Conversely, you can also slow the game down if it seems to be going too fast by giving very obscure clues.
It's a lot of fun if you want to try giving it a shot!
If you teach US History and would like everything pre-made for you, you can download this resource which includes game boards for every unit.
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