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Triple Play


Students connect important words, descriptions, and sketches.


  • 4-5 important words
  • Notebook paper


  1. Write 4-5 important words on the board.
  2. Organize students into teams of three and assign each a role (A, B, or C).
  3. Assign each team a different word and instruct them to complete the following 3 tasks:
    • A = Write the word on paper 1
    • B = Describe the word on paper 2
    • C = Sketch or provide a visual example of the word on paper 3
  4. Students crush their papers into “baseballs” and, on the teacher’s signal, toss them.
  5. Students randomly pick up a second and third baseball and toss them without reading them.
  6. Students pick up a fourth baseball and roam to find the other two matching baseballs to make a Triple Play (the word, the description, and the sketch).
  7. After finding their 3 matches, students call out “Triple Play!” and move to the side of the room.
  8. Repeat steps 4-7 three or four times, asking students to find a baseball that represents a word they have not yet played with so that students are exposed to different words.

Classroom Management

  • Role-play how to create the 3 “baseballs,” how to toss appropriately, and how to move to the perimeter of the room once students have found their Triple Play matches.


  • Promote access by pairing with supportive peers or allowing students to preview their assigned word.
  • Promote access by allowing the use of notes or digital resources.

Think It Up!

  • Have students think more deeply about the concept by responding to a Think It Up prompt as an exit ticket or journal entry:
    • Create a new sketch for the word you ended with and add more information to the description.
    • Connect one of the words to an assessment item and justify how they are related.
  • Encourage students to use lead4ward’s Thinking Stems (English/Spanish) to frame their responses, if needed.