Real-World Walkabouts: Contraction Matching

This activity by Suzannah Evans focuses on matching word groups with the correct contractions.


  • language arts


  • contractions
  • word recognition
  • word derivatives


  • 1-2


  • construction paper, 4” x 6” index cards, or contraction cards reproducible pages
  • scissors
  • markers
  • music and a way to play it


Before beginning the activity, create contraction and word cards pairs. Contraction cards
should include common contractions such as isn’t, don’t, aren’t, etc. If desired, use the
contraction cards reproducible pages. Word cards should include the matching words such
as is not, do not, are not, etc. Create one contraction card or word card for each student. Be
sure all matching card pairs are distributed during the activity.

  1. Give each student a contraction card or a word card. Tell students to hold their cards in front
    of them.
  2. Play music to create a musical chairs atmosphere.
  3. Tell students to move around the room to search for the student with the matching
    contraction card or word card. Instruct students to move around the room in a unique way
    such as dance, skip, hop, jump, or wiggle.
  4. Time is up when the song is complete or you stop the music.
  5. Check students’ matches, correct as needed, and have matched pairs read their
    contractions and words to the class.
  6. Have the matched pairs work together to come up with two sentences that include their
    contraction and words.
  7. Repeat the activity with different contractions and word cards if desired.