Most of us know how to play the game of bingo. Thus, the way to play bingo is probably may already be familiar, but if not, here is a quick recap:
1. Each player is a bingo worksheet (also known as a "bingo card" or "bingo board").
2. The bingo worksheet contains a grid of squares. Each square usually contains a different number
3. The bingo caller calls out the items printed on the worksheets in a random order.
4. As items are called out, the players cross items off their worksheets. The winner is the first player to achieve a winning pattern of crossed out items on their worksheet (in different versions of the game, different winning patterns may be used).
Although of course the standard game of bingo is well-known by many people, and played by many as a leisure activity, what is not so well known is that modified versions of bingo can be of great use in education. In fact, bingo is becoming increasingly common in classrooms and can be used as a teaching aid in a number of K-12 subjects including reading, vocabulary, math, foreign languages and even science and history, as well as in adult education, in for example English as a Second Language (ESL) classes.
The common element in most educational versions of bingo is the use of modified bingo worksheets. Instead of the standard worksheets that contain numbers, the teacher creates, ahead of class, workshops that contain items chosen for the lesson. In the math class, the items may still be numbers, but the numbers are the answers to problems called out by the teacher. In a language class, the worksheets may be printed with Spanish or French words, which the students must match to calls made in English by the teacher. Really there are almost endless possible variations, and innovative teachers are inventing new ones all the time.
You might think that this is all very well, but where the special customized bingo worksheets be obtained. Obviously, it would not be a good use of a busy teacher's time to spend a lot of time personally preparing a work for each student. Fortunately, there is an answer – a PC and some bingo workbook creator software can make light work of printing worksheets on any theme that the teacher chooses.