Reading Games

Barbara J. Feldman

With the advent of the Internet, reinforcing reading skills does not have to be all about having your nose in a book. These educational game sites run the gamut from introducing phonics to preschoolers to fun online activities for middle school readers.

  • Earobics: Game Goo5 stars

    Earobics is a K-3 "reading intervention" product from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. GameGoo is the free, online educational practice game component. For a list of educational standards addressed in each game (such as identifying the letters in words), follow the Home button to the Teachers & Parents link. The games (arranged on the menu from advanced to beginner) are colorful, noisy, fun and just plain wonderful.

  • Kabongo5 stars

    Kabongo is both a free and paid learning environment, but the free games are so good and the paid games so inexpensive (just $4.95 each without any recurring membership fees) that Kabongo easily earned its five stars. To access the free games, create an account with your email address, and then click the link in the confirmation email. Kabongo consists of three animated gaming habitats (two of which were free when I visited) for ages four to seven. The games build reading skills with practice of letter and pattern recognition, listening comprehension and phonetic awareness.

  • Reading is Fundamental: Leading to Reading5 stars

    Reading is Fundamental's divides their online activity center into two age groups: Reading Planet for ages six to fifteen, and Leading to Reading for zero (zero?) to five years old. With great graphics and fun game play, these colorful online reading activities and interactive books are sure to please. To access Reading Planet (for kids over five), look for the link in the horizontal menu at the bottom of any page.

  • Flashlight Readers5 stars

    "Go inside your favorite reads" with online games from Scholastic, along with author notes, photos and audio interviews. Ten popular young adult books are featured, including "Because of Winn-Dixie" by Kate DiCamillo, "Holes" by Louis Sachar, and "Hoot" by Carl Hiassen. The site includes teacher and parent guides with ideas on how to reinforce "reading skills in fun and meaningful ways."

  • Starfall5 stars

    Starfall offers four levels of interactive reading resources for pre-k through second-grade from ABC's and phonics to read-along plays and short stories. "Every word on the site is clickable and will read aloud. In this way, your child's speaking, reading, and writing vocabulary can grow alongside his curiosity." Although the interactive stories are the star of the show at Starfall, don't overlook the printable downloads which include a Reading and Writing Journal, Reading Awards, Phonics Puzzles, and printouts to accompany many of the stories. They can be accessed from the Download Center link at the very bottom of the home page.

  • Honorable Mentions

    The following links are either new discoveries or sites that didn't make it into my newspaper column because of space constraints. Enjoy!

    Cite This Page

  • Feldman, Barbara. "Reading Games." Surfnetkids. Feldman Publishing. 19 Apr. 2011. Web. 5 Dec. 2014. < >.

  • About This Page

  • By . Originally published April 19, 2011. Last modified March 9, 2014.

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