Real-World Walkabout: Tic-Tac-Toe

In this life-size game of tic-tac-toe, students practice math and language arts skills as they use their bodies as Xs and Os. 


  • math
  • language arts


  • math facts, spelling words, even numbers and odd numbers, shapes, uppercase and lowercase letters, vowels and consonants, etc.


  • all


  • masking or painter's tape for creating an indoor grid; sidewalk chalk for creating an outdoor grid
  • for Xs and Os and subject area skills: sheets of paper; paper plates and a dark marker; sets of miscellaneous objects 


  1. Use tape or sidewalk chalk to create a large three by three tic-tac-toe grid. Refer to math and language arts variations below to complete the grid.
  2. To create Xs and Os, draw them on sheets of paper or paper plates. You can also use household objects for Xs and Os such as forks and spoons, crayons and pencils, etc.
  3. To play, follow these rules.
    • Decide who will go first.
    • Player 1 should choose a square and put the X, O, or object in it. Before choosing a square, players should do the action of their symbol. For X, they should cross their arms into an X. For O, they should make a circle with their arms above their head.
    • Player 2 should choose a square and put the X, O, or object in it and do the action of the symbol.
    • Players take turns until one player gets three in a row (up, down, across, or diagonally). The first player to get three in a row is the winner.
    • If all squares are full without a winner, the game is over.

Math Variations:
• In the grid, draw math problems, even numbers and odd numbers, two-dimensional and three-dimensional shapes, etc. Before choosing a square, the player

Language Arts Variations:
• In the grid, write uppercase and lowercase letters, spelling words, vowels and consonants, etc. Before choosing a square, the player should name number or shape, solve the math problem, etc.

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