I had been eyeing this Bananagrams Game which looks like a fast-paced Scrabble in a fun and compact (of course banana) package. My family (from Great-Grandma to Grandparents to David and I) love to play Scrabble, so anyway I could get my 5 year old more interested in such word games is a bonus.  Up pops Pairs in Pears while surfing Amazon, which is meant for the younger kids (5+), so it was a no-brainer purchase.

It arrived yesterday afternoon so last night our small family set out to play! Skimming the directions, I see that it has some very simple versions that I bet homeschoolers from age 3-4ish could even play, such as rhyming, letters in order, consonants/vowels, names, and such. But knowing my little speller girl, I knew she’d want to go straight to forming the words!

The game is simple. 4 alphabet sets come in a cute little  zippered pear pouch.  There’s also a little gadget that you can write words on, but we didn’t use that much, nor did the instructions mention it. We divided the letters up equally between the 3 of us, each got about 34 letters. After I spelled a sample word “bug” for Satori, she set out spelling all kinds of words. I didn’t even have time to read the directions and follow one of the suggested games.

To my surprise, Satori didn’t stick to the simple CVC type words like “cat”. She went ahead and experimented with words that we have gone over in All About Spelling – such as beginning and end blends, double letter endings, “-ck” words, and more. She got almost all of them right on the first try. Every time we looked over, Satori had a new word which both David and I thought was above a newly-turned 5 year old ability!

Thanks to Grandma and Grandpa for their gift this Christmas of this art table that we used for the game! The art table has a white-board top, a spot to put drawing supplies, and a roll of drawing paper underneath that can easily be torn off once a picture is drawn. But it also makes a perfect small gaming table! We had a spot to use a dry erase marker to tally up our word count (good math practice for Satori).

Pairs in Pears was a good investment for our family, it will get Satori even better at reading and spelling. I imagine Bananagrams might be a good idea next Christmas and soon after that, the real deal – Scrabble!