Word Collection Jars

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Our word collection started when JJ’s teacher read aloud Donavan’s Word Jar to her class. JJ wanted to start a word collection jar at home. Of course, I was happy to oblige!

word collection jars for learning new words and saving favorites

Find a Jar

We found jars and labeled them. One of these days, we may get fancier and decorate the jars but we wanted to get right to our collecting so we left that until later.


Find Words for the Word Collection

We began with old magazines. We looked for interesting words to cut out and keep in the word jars.

Picture Books
We found many wonderful, juicy words in the picture books we read. For example, the book King Hugo’s Huge Ego gave us about twenty words for our jar! JJ wrote down these words on slips of paper and added them to her collection.

Chapter Books
We’re reading with sticky notes to jot down favorite words, too. These words can be looked up in the dictionary and added to your word collection, too. Not only that, but it will get kids thinking metacognitively and prepare them for annotating texts later on in school.

vocabulary word collection

Word Play Activities

Here are ways you can play more with words…

Get silly with tongue twisters. They’re a blast!

Or learn palindromes. These are my favorite, way more than my kids. I’m weird like that.

Try playing a word game. These can be as simple as hangman or as tricky as anagrams. We love vocabulary games like Oddly Obvious and Mad Libs: The Game, too.

Finally, make up silly words by combing two words together. My favorite made-up word of my own is snoph (sneeze + cough) but it still hasn’t caught on yet. Which is weird because we NEED that word! Right?

Our Favorite Word-Loving Books

Read books that celebrate words. Books like these…

P is for Pterodactyl

Max's Words
Max’s Words

The Boy who Loved Words
The Boy Who Loved Words

Crown An Ode to the Fresh Cut

Donovan's Word Jar
Donavan’s Word Jar

13 Words
13 Words (
my review here)

Carmine A Little More Red 

z is for moose
Z is for Moose

Get the big list of our favorite picture books with juicy word choices here!

Make Your Own Parts of Speech Books

Just for fun, and maybe for when you play Mad Libs, you can use your cut-out words to make your own parts of speech books.

Word Collections


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Write Your Own Mad Libs
Writing Gifts for Kids
Found Poetry Using Old Magazines
Word Play Fun for Kids
15 Ways to Learn New Vocabulary 
Picture Books That Teach Grammar, Figurative Language, and Punctuation
Art Journaling


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  1. This goes right along with the magnetic board made from a oil change pan. I think my second graders would love collecting words while we read Donovan’s. Then we could make parts of speech books shaped like jars and also play with phrases with magnetic words on this oil pan mounted on the wall. Many active ideas using words – Such FUN!