Bananagrams are a great classroom tool that I encountered this year. It's impressive that a cute little banana-shaped pouch turns out to be a fun spelling or word work activity. What was really interesting to me is that the game is challenging: the banana pouch is full of letter tiles that students use in a fast-pace race to construct crossword puzzles. As you see a game being played, it looks a lot like Scrabble, except quicker thinking is involved.
It's a cool game that is a great way to practice spelling, use in a word work center, or just give the class to play for a fun game. Kids love word games and get really excited while they're playing, which could really liven up a spelling or language arts lesson. They also learn and get a chance to practice their word skills. Bananagrams have even won several awards for educational toys.
There are also some books that help challenge players as they play the game. Whether you have young elementary students or word-savvy older learners, these books are a guide for playing at the right difficulty level. You know I love mental exercises for students, so this makes the activity even more appealing to me! There are also other versions of the game that include apples and pears.
Because of the flexibility, challenge and fun this activity offers, it's been one of my favorite finds so far! I'm not too shabby at word games, and I really would like to play.
Check out this quick video for a description of the game: