Beach Ball Bash – Phonics Game

Phonics Game – ‘Beach Ball Bash’ involves writing onset and rime onto different sections of a beach ball. When the students catch the ball they have to combine the sounds beneath their hands and say it aloud. It is a fun way to have a little fun practicing common blends and word endings. 


Free Phonics & Word Building Game

Beach Ball Bash

phonics beach ball game

Phonics Beach Ball Game

Beach Ball Bash is a phonics-based onset and rime game. This download includes how to play the game based on bl, pl, cl, gl, sl, fl, ack, ap, ip, ed, ock & um. It also includes ideas for how to modify and extend the game. It is an ideal game to use as a ‘warm-up’ exercise of lesson transition.


– To have a little fun practicing common blends and word endings. 


This is a nice end-of-session or lesson transition game.

What You Need:

– a cheap blow-up beach ball
– clear or colored contact
– a texta


  1. Cut out circles from the contact about 10cm diameter.
  2. Stick the contact onto the ball as shown.
  3. Write blends on the top of the ball and word endings onto the bottom.

How to Play:

  1. The teacher or group leader tosses the ball to a student and they must catch it with one hand on an initial blend and one on the word ending.
  2. The student combines the word elements, says it aloud to the group & tosses it back to the leader.
Free Phonics Game

Free Phonics Game

Very versatile activity!! I can adapt this easily for my special needs students and it will go along with my beach themed classroom!! Thanks for the freebie!


– When a child is unsure of which circle to read go with the letters closest to the student’s pointer finger.

– Write the letters in permanent marker. Parents tend to get a little ‘thingy’ about ink stains on school clothes 🙂

 Experiment with onset and rime as well as blends and common word endings.

Taking it a Bit Further:

– How many words can be made in 1 or 2 minutes? Keep a record. Make a graph.

– Have children stand in a circle and pass the ball around the circle. How long to make a complete round? Record and graph the results.

– Children modify a playground game so it uses this ball?

– Catcher spells the word and the rest of the group calls out the answer.

– Cover the ball in single sounds and students have to say a word beginning with that sound.

– Using the single sound ball the students say a word that ends with the sound their right hand is nearest to.

– Base the ball on sight words.

– Base the game on compound words

– Base the ball on common classroom spelling misconceptions eg ‘as well’, ‘a lot’ 

– base the game on suffixes e.g. s, ‘es’, ‘ed’ & ‘ing’.

– Vocabulary to work on for older grades.

– 2 balls one with consonant blends the other with word endings

– play the game with a partner.

– play in a small group.

– Put up a piece of string or badminton net and play volleyball using the beach balls. NB The students must catch the ball in both hands and say the word.

– Get students to make up their own game.

– Create rules for ‘real’ words and ‘nonsense’ words to add a little variety.