Multisensory Monday: Wild Old Words

Posted by Brainspring on 22nd Feb 2021

Just like fashion frenzies, language often takes on trends. I recall watching old Westerns when I was younger and hearing, “Come an’ git’it, it’s time for chow” as a dinner announcement. Depending on where you live, “chow” may not be a frequently used word for dinner. Isn’t language fun?

These Westerns spurred the creation of this activity to teach a lesson for the Wild Old Word patterns (-old, -ild, -ind, -olt, -ost) (Lesson 2-23, page 195). These closed patterns are “Wild” because the vowels do not take on short sounds. They actually are pronounced with long vowel sounds, as most words containing these Wild Old Word combinations are read with long vowel sounds. So, with Wild Old Words, the Exception Becomes The Rule!  Now, of course, there will be a few exceptions to this rule. For example, the words lost and cost, or the word wind, like wind a clock could also be wind like the wind blows. See how confusing these Wild Old Word patterns can be!

Needed Supplies

  • A horse illustration (Draw your own or use this printout.)
  • Tape
  • Scissors
  • Markers or Crayons
  • Construction paper or copy paper
  • Card printouts (found here)
    • Use index cards or the blank card sheet provided in this printout and write out a word or definition on each. Make sure to have a definition card for each word card and vice versa.

Wild Old Word Definitions

Frigid, chilly, cool of lower temperature – cold
Speak firmly or harshly towards someone – scold
To say or advise – told
Purchase, buy or sell – sold
Involving spores, toxic – mold
Carrying, taking or putting – hold
Metal or solid – gold
Make in half usually bending – bend
No longer new, aging or worn – old
Standout, attractive, brazen – bold

Make it Multisensory!

  • Give each student their own horse printout.
  • Shuffle the cards you’ll be playing with. You can play using just Wild Old Word Cards, definition cards, or by combining the two decks.
  • Stack your shoe deck facedown. The player that does not answer correctly will pull from this deck.
  • Player 1 will select a card from the Wild Old Words deck and read either the word or definition on the card.
    • **Depending on the number of students playing and their skill level, you can either opt to read the words or definitions yourself or have the players read them to each other.
  • Player 2 responds with the corresponding word or definition.
    • If Player 2 answers correctly, a point is awarded.
    • If Player 2 is incorrect, they will then draw from the stack of shoe cards.
      • If a horseshoe card is drawn, tape it to your horse’s foot.
      • If a funky old shoe card is drawn, set it to the side.
  • Rotate players, so each has an equal opportunity to read and answer. When all of the cards in the word set have been played, the game is over, and the player with the most points wins the game. If two players have tied, whoever has the fewest funky old shoe cards wins!

Written by Patricia Osburn

Patricia is a Brainspring tutor.

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