Introduction: Fishing for Fun | Educational Game

About: I am interested in music and technology.

In this activity, children will be able to have fun going "fishing" while also being educated. This game can be applied to many different areas of study, but for this instructable, I have created two examples - one example is for math practice, and the other example is for Spanish vocabulary practice.

Here are a few other ideas that could be used that I did not make:

  • History (Matching an event with a year)
    • Example: Signing of the Declaration of Independence --> 1776
  • Science (Matching vocabulary terms)
    • Example: The force holding everything down on earth --> Gravity
  • Music (Matching vocabulary terms or matching notes to their definition)
    • Example: A whole note gets how many beats in 4/4 time --> 4 beats
  • English (Matching characters in a book to their role in the definition)
    • Example: Which character is the antagonist in "The Three Little Pigs?" --> The Wolf

There are many other ways to use this game, those are just a few more ideas.


**Supplies that are required are in BOLD**

  • Clear Plastic Plant Saucer ( - I used a 15" diameter saucer for this project
  • Light Blue Construction Paper x6
  • Four Different Colored ConstructionPapers x2 (Every two pages makes about 4 fish)
  • Yarn
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Notecards x15
  • Popsicle Sticks x5
  • Pen/Pencil
  • Stickers
  • Googly eyes x1 per fish (not required but strongly recommended)
  • Paper Clips OR Clothpins x1 for each fish you plan to make (I found it easier to use the paper clips)
  • Small Magnet OR Magnetic Tape (I found it easier to use a magnet)

Step 1: Create the Pond

First, you are going to want to make the base of the pond.

Lay out four pieces (or more if needed) of blue construction paper [Figure 2]. Place the plastic saucer on top to make sure you will have enough paper to trace it. Once you know that you can trace the saucer, take the four pieces of paper together and trace as shown in the picture.

Cut out the circle and that will become the base of your pond [Figure 3].

Step 2: Create the Waves

Next, you will need to create the waves for the sides of the pond. To create the waves, fold 2-3 blue pieces of construction paper (longways) in half and cut them where you folded. Take the strips and tape them together as shown in Figure 11 and make sure that they fit all the way around the saucer on the inside.

Then you will just need to cut out waves as shown in Figure 11A.

Step 3: Assemble Parts of Pond

This is really where the project starts to come together!

Tape the blue base that was cut out in step 1 to the bottom side of the saucer [Figures 4 and 5].

Tape the waves inside the saucer along the edges as shown in the picture above [Figures 12 and 13].

Step 4: Create Fishing Rod (Part 1)

Strongly tape 5 popsicle sticks (or more to make it longer) together as shown in Figure 7. This will serve as the stick for your fishing rod.

Step 5: Create Fishing Rod (Part 2)

Securely tape a piece of yarn to the end of the fishing rod [Figure 8]. The length of the yarn can vary and will depend on the height of the children playing this game.

Step 6: Create Fishing Rod (Part 3)

Wrap a small magnet with the yarn and cover the magnet with a layer of tape [Figure 9]. This magnet will be what catches the fish during the game.

Step 7: Create the Fish (Part 1)

Trace your hand on the colored pieces of construction paper as shown in Figure 6. Usually, you can fit two hands per paper, but it will depend on your hand size.

Cut out the hands and add the paper clip as shown in Figure 10. This is the basis of how the fish will look. The paper clip will hold the notecard in and will also be magnetic.

*Tip: Use other people's hands to create a variety of sized fish!

Step 8: Create the Fish (Part 2) [Optional, But Strongly Recommended]

Add googly eyes to the fish to make them look even more like real fish! You can add the eyes anywhere on the fish, but I like it the best below the thumb.

You can also customize the fish even more such as drawing scales or fins. Be creative!

Step 9: Create the Flash Cards

There are two types of notecards you are going to make:

  1. "Notecards outside the pond"
    • These are regular sized notecards
  2. "Notecards on the fish"
    • These are half notecards - cut each notecard in half for two

Create a few notecards for the "Notecards outside the pond" pile and a few for the "Notecards on the fish" pile. On the back of each "Notecard on the fish" you should write the corresponding match on the back of the little notecard that goes with the notecard outside the pond. For example, if the card outside the pond is 8+2 and the fish has a 10, the card with the 10 should have 8+2 written on the back. This is so that you can check to see if you are correct once you catch the fish.

Step 10: Attach Cards to Fish

Securely place the tiny notecards onto the fish by using the paperclip. Make sure that the side facing up corresponds with a notecard that is outside of the pond. Figure 16 is an example of using this game to practice Spanish Vocabulary.

Step 11: Customize the Pond [Optional, But Recommended]

Make this pond unique! I added stickers to the waves and to the bottom of the pond. There are many things you can do here, so be creative! Figure 20 is an example of using this game to practice Math.

Step 12: Play the Game!

Now you can play the game!

Have the pile of note cards outside the pond and attach the little notecard to each fish. Go fishing for the match and when you catch the fish, look at the back of the notecard to see if you were correct. You know that you are correct if the notecard outside the pond matches what is on the back of the little notecard on the fish.

Enjoy and let me know if you make this game with any other creative twists I didn't mention!

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