Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Vocabulary Bingo

Leslie Dobbs


The students extend their vocabulary by participating in the Vocabulary Bingo activity. This activity can be used with other subjects to help improve vocabulary.


The student extends the vocabulary-building expectations of the sixth grade using seventh grade or higher level vocabulary.


-List of vocabulary words from a literature selection currently being studied
-Bingo cards with vocabulary words written on the cards (See Associated File for a blank copy of the card)
-Bingo markers (small squares or circles of paper used to mark spaces on Bingo card)
-Prizes for winners


1. Prepare the Bingo cards. You may use the attached format. (See Associated File) Make enough copies for each of your students.
2. Have a class make a set of Bingo cards before the actual game day. Pass out a blank card to each student. Write the vocabulary words on the board and have each student fill in the words on the card. Instruct the students to write the words in a variety of patterns (so that each card looks different).
3. Prepare the Bingo markers. You may use small pieces of paper cut into squares or circles. You may also use dried beans or any other small object. You will need about 25 markers for each student. Have a box handy for storage of these markers.
4. Prepare prizes for the winners. You may choose to award extra credit points to add to the quiz grade (make sure you keep a list of winners handy when you start adding extra credit points). You may also choose to award candy or toy prizes, depending on your school and classroom rules. Whatever you choose to do, make sure you tell your students about the prizes before you begin the activity.


1. Prior knowledge: Use 7-10 short vocabulary words from a literature selection the students are currently studying. Several days before the review activity, study these words with your students. Allow time for students to copy the words and definitions to study at home. While reading the literature selection, address these words and their connotation within the literature selection. Set a time for a vocabulary quiz covering these words. Consider using sentences from the selection in your quiz.

2. Review the words and definitions with your students at the beginning of class. Again, incorporate the study of the literature selection by reading sentences from the selection and asking the students for the meaning of the vocabulary words in the sentences.

3. Instruct students to take everything off their desks except for a pencil or a colored pencil. If you have a student helper or a student of the week, allow that student to help you pass out the materials needed. Each student needs a prepared Bingo card (See Associated File for copy and the Preparations section for instructions on how to prepare the cards) and at least 25 Bingo markers.

4. As you call out the vocabulary definitions, the students place a marker over the correct vocabulary word. When a student marks five places in a row (horizontal, vertical, or diagonally), that student calls out “Bingo.” Check his or her card to make sure the student placed markers over the correct words. If the student marked the card correctly, that student wins a prize. You may choose to give extra credit points on the quiz or hand out candy or toy prizes.

5. You may continue playing Bingo as many times as you choose.

6. Allow five or ten minutes at the end of class to collect the Bingo cards and markers and to review the words one more time. You may also choose to use this time to verbally congratulate your winners and encourage everyone to be winners on the test.


As the game progresses, walk around the room and check that the students are participating and are placing the markers on the correct spaces. Also, assess the students when they win a game by checking their cards to see that they correctly matched the definition to the word on the Bingo card.


1. This activity is well-adapted for ESE or ESOL students. You can also allow extra time to study by giving these students the vocabulary words prior to your introduction of this material.
2. You might also have the Bingo cards laminated for longer durability.

Attached Files

This file contains a blank Bingo card.     File Extension: pdf

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