Reading Rainbow

Look, you get the reference. I get the reference. My kids, though? Nothing.

So, I started making this board game back in Japan, and it got packed before I finished it. But I found it the other day, and I realized that all I needed were the pieces! Ch 3, make 12 dc in 3rd ch from hook, join rnd, finish off. Pieces!

Take a look, it's in a book!

(Whoops. I have two stacks of purple cards by mistake.) You can make a pretty nice-looking board game at home with things you may have around the house. Shall we?

You Will Need:

  • 2 Cardboard Rectangles (I used matching flaps from a cardboard box)
  • Clear Packing Tape
  • White Posterboard
  • Markers
  • Clear Contact Paper
  • Extras for Game Play (dice, index cards, pieces)

First, stack your cardboard rectangles (as though the board was folded closed). Tape one long edge together around the outside, like the spine of a book.

Next, open your board and turn it over. With the pieces laying flat, tape the other side of the seam. Now your board should be able to open and close, but only in one direction.

Cut two pieces from posterboard to match your cardboard pieces; draw your game board. (Actually, if you only cut one piece that covers the whole board, and cut it after you draw, your sides will match up. Nice. I just thought of that.) I knew I wanted a kind of blank slate of a board, just spaces to move pieces along in some bright, appealing way. That way if I want to use the same board for a different game later, it’s easy!

Carefully fasten your posterboard to your cardboard base. Cover the posterboard with the contact paper. (Be careful! I got a few wrinkles in mine.) Then, tape around all four edges – leaving a break at the top and bottom for the seam – so that the board and base are securely fastened and will not peel apart. Look! You made a nice, sturdy game board!


So, for our game I copied the complete list of Dolch words out onto index cards. (Dolch words are a list of 220 common sight words and 95 common nouns that together account for 50-70% of all words in general writing.) The words are divided into different levels, and I marked each level with a different color. The white words are special words I think my kids need to know, like ‘Arizona,’ ‘Japan,’ and the names of family members.

To play the game, you roll the die, move that number of spaces, and draw a card marked with that color. Then, you read your word. When you get to the rainbow, you’re done! That can either take a long time, or a short time, depending on your mood. Max and Charlie like to go around in circles so we don’t finish for a long, long time. When we’re all finished, we try and make silly sentences with our words. It’s fun!

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