Heads Up, Seven Up Sight Words!

One of my students' favorite games is Heads Up, Seven Up!  Heck, it was one of my favorite games to play at school when I was little too!  :)  It's easy to add an educational spin to the game.  Read on to find out more!
The only materials you need for this activity are your students and sight word flashcards.  You can use cutesy ones like the ones above, or just write the word on a piece of construction paper!  =)  

How to Play:
1.  Choose the seven students who will be "it."  Give each of these students a flashcard with a sight word on it.  Read aloud each word and have the class repeat.  Tell the class to use their imagination because you have changed these kiddos' names to the sight words they are holding.  {First graders think it's hilarious when you "change" Taylor's name to THIS or Ben's name to THAT.}

2.  The rest of the class puts their heads down and covers their eyes.  Then, the students who are "it" walk around the room and secretly choose ONE person.  When a child is selected, he puts his thumb up.  

3.  Announce "Heads Up, Seven up!"  

4.  Have the students with their thumbs up guess who selected them.  They MUST call out the SIGHT WORD that the person is holding, not the person's name.  Make sense?  

After a few rounds, I change out the sight words that the students are holding.  I think this game is genius because it doesn't take any prep time.  Students are engaged because it's fun, and they are reading and rereading their sight words dozens of times throughout the game!  It's a great transition activity or game to play when you have 10 extra minutes before lunch.  It's also a lot more fun that traditional flashcard practice!  Try it out with your kiddos, and let me know how it goes!  


  1. Love the idea and my students love this game! They always want to play the last few minutes of the day. Maybe now I can justify letting them! :)

  2. Exactly!! If admin walks in your room, your are playing a sight word game!! :) Have fun!

  3. Oh my!!! I LOVE THIS!!! That is my students FAVORITE game except we call it "heads down, thumbs up" and everyone has their thumbs up and if picked they put their thumb down! We play everyday! I'm thinking a little makeover will be perfect for tomorrow! Thanks so much for the great idea!

    Saddle Up For 2nd Grade

  4. This is such a great idea! And so much fun for the kids!!! :)

  5. I could so do this in my third and fourth grade classroom with math facts!

  6. I could so do this in my third and fourth grade classroom with math facts!

  7. I could so do this in my third and fourth grade classroom with math facts!

  8. This is such a great way to work on sight words. I am pinning it so that I can play it later with my son.

  9. We also used to play 'heads up, thumbs down' in school. We loved it! This is a great idea, thanks for sharing.