Large Class Activities
Fun and engaging games and activities for large ESL classes!
Key: 'W' warmer, 'P' pronunciation, 'C' controlled-practice, 'F' freer-practice, 'R' receptive
2 Truths, 1 Lie - WF
Demonstrate by writing two truths and one lie about yourself on the board. Allow the class to guess what your lie is. Once they grasp the concept, give them 5 to 10 minutes to write their own list of two truths and one lie. Students take turns presenting their list to the class for participation points. The class guesses what the lie is.
20 questions - W
Divide students into 4 groups choose one person from each give them a person or place. Make sure it’s the same. Students go back to their groups and the other students ask them up to 20 questions to find out. First team to guess correctly wins the point. If you have them, have your TA or Associate Teacher monitor two groups while you monitor two groups encouraging different students to ask questions.
Acting Awards - C
Prepare a short dialogue and demonstrate it in front of the class. Prepare a list of emotions on different slips of paper. Pass out copies of the dialogue to the class so each student has one. Review the emotions with the class: happy, sad, excited, bored, angry, etc. Pick two students randomly to come to the front of class and perform the dialogue. Each student draws an emotion from a hat and must perform the dialogue with the corresponding emotion. Every student must perform once to earn participation points. At the end of class, list the best actors/actresses on the board.
Advertisement Design - F
Teach the students some key marketing phrases: advertisement, sale, discount, 50% off, brand, logo, slogan, price, etc. Prepare an example of an advertisement to show the class. Give the students 20 minutes to design their ad. If time permits, encourage the students to present their ad to the class. Students who present their ad receive bonus points to their final grade.
Bang Bang! - WC
Good warmer. Two students stand up and the first to answer teacher's question and say "bang bang" while pointing and shooting wins. "What’s your name?" "How are you?" What is this?" etc. Needs to be played in a quick speedy succession to inject energy. Encourage other students to help.
Board Race - WCR
Students simply race to write words on the board related to the topic given.
Bragging Rights (advanced) - WF
Demonstrate a dialogue to the class on bragging. This game is great for teaching the present perfect verb tense. A: I've played football with Lionel Messi. B: So what? I've played football with Christiano Ronaldo. A: So what? I taught Ronaldo how to play football! Divide the class into 2 teams. Give the teams a topic to prepare bragging rights (sports, money, celebrities, talents, etc.). Have one student from each team come to the front of class to list their bragging rights. Encourage outlandish ideas and exaggeration. The student with the funniest, most creative boasts earns a point for their team.
Broken Telephone - WPC
Divide students into teams based on their rows. The student sitting on the end is the captain of their row. Give the captain a strip of paper containing a sentence. Student reads and then whispers to the person sitting next to them. The next student then whispers it in the ear of the following student and so on until the sentence reaches the last student in the row who shouts out the sentence to the first student. If the sentence was repeated successfully, all the way to the end, then the row scores a point.
Charades - W
Have a list of already prepared topics/ words and one student will come up to the front and act out the word. The rest of the class then needs to guess what the word is. Variation: One student will come to the front of the class and face the rest of the class, the teacher will write a word or draw a picture on the board. The rest of the class needs to act out the word and the student at the front needs to guess what the word is. When the student at the front gets the answer write he/she will choose the next person to come to the front and it will be their turn to write a word or draw a picture.
Chopstick Discovery - C
Place answers around the room on walls and answers on the floor, or in a pile on the floor. Students have to match questions with answers to complete the task. Make it more challenging by making them pick up the answers with chopsticks.
Clever Parrot - P
The teacher produces either vocabulary or a statement which can be produced accurately or inaccurately by the teacher. The students listen and if the pronunciation of the teacher is accurate, then they will repeat the vocabulary or statement. If the pronunciation is inaccurate, then they won't repeat the vocabulary or statement. Mistakes in form can also be used for more complex grammar practice. For example: I’m gonna play to football tomorrow. The students must check the form before repeating or not repeating.
Compound / Phrasal Pictionary - W
Another extension of pictionary, this one uses two or more pictures to stimulate students to create compound nouns or phrases. Students can create the nouns or phrases on small white or black boards. To make the game more challenging, you can also have the students identify the type of language being used to create the compound noun or phrase. Bedroom = noun + noun Rainfall = noun + verb Redhead = adj + noun. This can be extended into controlled practice as the students need to create a statement using appropriate target language.
Connect Four - W
7x7 grid works best. Write 7 vocabulary words at the top of the 7 columns. Students compete to connect four by pronouncing or creating sentences with the words.
Convince Me (advanced) - WF
Great for teaching your students the art of persuasion. Bring a bag of candy to class for this one. Teach the class different ways to convince via persuasion: if…then…, pity, flattery, etc. Divide the class into 2 teams. To earn candy, a team must be more persuasive than the opposing team. “If you give me the candy, then I will give you 100 dollars.” “I’m too poor to afford candy and I’m starving. Please give me a piece of candy.” “You look very handsome today teacher. So can I have a piece of candy?” The tactics get pretty hilarious when a piece of candy is on the line.
Dialogue Build - PC
Draw a line down the board. Write the first sentence of the dialogue on the board. Elicit the response. Divide the class in two and assign each half the speaker 1 or the speaker 2 role. Continue to build the dialogue, either by giving it to them or eliciting it from them. Drill as a conversation (e.g. Group 1 speaks, Group 2 replies). After drilling the class as a whole, pair students and get them to practice together.
Dice Pronunciation - P
Good for vocab - Put up flashcards up on board, numbered from 1 to 6. Student comes up and rolls dice, saying corresponding word out loud followed by his entire team (points accordingly).
Dictation to Production - CPR
This method provides receptive (listening) and controlled productive practice. The teacher will read a short passage or story to the students who will listen and perform a simple gist task such as: Is the story positive or negative? Happy or sad? Interesting or boring? The teacher will read again with the students taking notes. This will be repeated a second time. After listening three times (including the initial gist task), the students will then work with a partner to rewrite the passage or story. As students are completing their recreation, the teacher can nominate students to begin placing a sentence at a time on the blackboard for feedback. (Don’t be concerned with errors on the blackboard as you can use these to help teach the students.) Once the students have finished, elicit what the target language or grammar point was to check meaning. Follow this up by seeing if the students notice any mistakes in the writing. The task can then be personalized by the students creating their own story or passage using the target language.
Directions - CR
Draw a map on the board. Make enough copies for each student. Teach directions: go straight, turn right, turn left, opposite the…, between the… Pass out the maps and divide the class into 4 or 5 teams. 2 different direction games can be played using a map: 1. Listening Activity: telling directions: From the start, I go straight on Dog Street and turn left on Duck Street. Where am I? 2. Productive Activity: Asking directions: How do I get to the… market, restaurant, etc.? - The team that answers the most questions correctly wins.
Family Art - F
Another adaptable ESL drawing lesson about family. Prepare a demo and show the class, etc. You can make it as difficult as you want, depending on the level of the students. For lower level students, have each student draw their family tree. For advanced students, have them draw their immediate family members and write 2 short sentences about each. “This is my mother. She is a very kind person because she takes care of me.” etc. “This is my brother. He is funny because he tells jokes.” etc.
Fashion & Style - R
Teach the class different styles and fashion for men and women. Goatee, beard, earrings, braids, ponytail, makeup, tank-top, t-shirt, ice skates, high heels, etc. Divide the class into 2 to 4 teams. Students from each team take turns coming to the front of class to draw on the board. Describe a person that the student must draw (“Draw a man with a spiked hair and beard, wearing a jacket, jeans and roller skates.” etc). Each article of style and fashion that the student correctly draws earns their team a point.
Group Hot/Cold - CP
Good for group pronunciation work. 1 student from each team is taken outside of the class room and a vocab card or realia is hidden within the classroom. The 4 selected students walk in and try to locate it. The rest of the class vary the volume in which they shout out the hidden vocabulary word depending on how close their teammate is towards to card/realia.
Group Story writing - WF
Write the first letter to a story at the top left of the board. Each student must contribute one word to the story, in order. Make a zig zag pattern through the class until every student has said one word. Write the word they say next in the story. The sentences must have correct grammar. Example: Write “The” to start the story. Point to the first student in the front row. They say, “cow” then the next student says, “runs”, … The story will end up as something ridiculous. “The cow runs fast and eats bananas while jumping over a duck in the tree. A girl eats fish every day and she is fat. I like to play guitar with my friend and we go to the mall every saturday.” Have the students read the story aloud once it is finished. They will all laugh because it won't make any sense.
Guess What? - C
Good for practicing lexis sets and short form questions. "Is it a...” "Are you...." "Does it...” Depending on what the target language is students must work in pairs asking yes/no questions to decipher the correct word. Using locations as an example: Teacher draws 5 buildings on the blackboard and the TA does the same on the opposite board. Hospital, Bank, Police Station, School, Library. Teacher asks the students "Where is Teacher?" Elicit yes/no questions from the students, aka "Are you at the hospital?" etc. Teacher then challenges the TA asking "Are you at the..." until one of them wins. students then perform the same activity in pairs using paper and pens. Very adaptable game and works well in speaking practice. Zoo animals, jobs, clothes, etc.
Hangman - W
The teacher or student at the front of the class thinks of a word or phrase; the others try to guess what it is one letter at a time. The player draws a number of dashes equivalent to the number of letters in the word. If a guessing player suggests a letter that occurs in the word, the other player fills in the blanks with that letter in the right places. If the word does not contain the suggested letter, the other player draws one element of a hangman’s gallows. As the game progresses, a segment of the gallows and of a victim is added for every suggested letter not in the word. The number of incorrect guesses before the game ends is up to the players, but completing a character in a noose provides a minimum of six wrong answers until the game ends. The first player to guess the correct answer thinks of the word for the next game.
Hold Them Up! - W
Before the activity, write a different word on a separate strip of paper for each team. Divide students into groups of 7-10. Have one student from each team sit in an allocated chair with the papers on the floor. Say one of the vocabulary words. Students have to find the word and hold it up. Award points to the first group who holds the correct word up. Repeat until everyone has had a turn. Variation 1: Use pictures for young students who haven't learned the alphabet. Variation 2: You could split the class into three and write the vocabulary three times on the board (in three sections). Different students are selected each time and have to circle the word on the board.
Holidays - F
An adaptable ESL drawing lesson. Create a demonstration for the class. Illustrate your favorite holiday on a piece of paper and write a few sentences about it. What is the holiday? When is the holiday? Why is it your favorite holiday? For lower level students, limit the sentences to answer the previous 3 questions. For advanced classes, students should write more detailed sentences. This game is also a great way for you to learn a thing or two about the holidays of a foreign culture.
Hot Potato - C
Pass a ball and produce some anaguage - elimination style, each team has 3 hearts. Hesitation, ball dropping, aggressive throwing, crap throwing equals minus 1 heart. Winning team can choose to challenge the teacher for extra points.
Hot Seat - C
Divide the class into 2 teams. Place a chair next to the board, facing the class. Students from each team rotate turns sitting in the chair. Write a vocabulary word behind the student that they cannot see. Each team has 20 seconds to elicit the word written on the board from their teammate sitting in the hot seat. If they speak their native language, erase a point from their score.
Hot/Cold Find the Flashcard - PF
One student will leave the room. One student will hide the flashcard somewhere in the classroom. The other student will then come in the room. The class then needs to chant the word on the flash card, the further away from the flashcard that the student is the softer the students say the word (cold) and the closer the student gets the louder the students say the word.
Joker Charades - C
Sentence level charades in which students freeze according to teacher's instructions. If the students move or laugh then they sit down and their team is disqualified from answering.
Jump the Line - R
Write 2 phonemes on the board students make a line. Teacher says a word with that sound and students jump to the sound. for example /t/ and /d/, you can even do several lines if the line is too big. Public School Variation - Students play in their rows with each row given a team name or number. The students can raise their left arms to signal the left phoneme and their right arms to signal the right phoneme. Use a countdown to make it more fun and the students can stand up and sit down for each one as well.
Lesson on Lyrics - R
Prepare to sing a song yourself or bring a music player to class. If you play guitar/enjoy singing, this game is pure dynamite. Divide the class into 10 to 15 teams. Print out the lyrics to the song and cut the lyrics into sections. Pass out the jumbled lyrics to each team. Sing/play the song for the class as many times as necessary. The first team to list the lyrics in the correct order wins.
Listen & Sit - R
Write 10-15 key words of the text on the board. Tell students to look at the board and choose 1 word. Give 30 seconds. Ask students to check with the person next to them to make sure they don’t have the same word – if they do, they must change words. Tell students to stand up. Divide the class into two teams. Tell students to listen to the text you will read. When they hear the word they've chosen, they must sit down. The team with the most people standing at the end wins.
Machine Gun - W
Using a grid with words on the top and on the side, students select tiles on the grid and create the correct sentence in hopes of attaining points and avoiding bombs, skulls etc. A variation is to write numbers on the side and letters along the top. Then students answer your questions to win the chance to choose a square. Behind each square is an icon which affects their score. Suggested icons: Skill: lose 50 / Heart: win 50 / 2-sided arrow: swap score with another team / Bomb: lose all points / Broke heart: choose another team to lose 50)
Match Cards - R
Spread the vocab cards on the floor and write the word, description, adjectives on the board. students race to match the vocab card to the word.
Mind Over Matter - C
Two students come to the front of the class where they take turns asking each other questions using the target language but waiting to respond. The class listens to the initial question which they then ask their own partner. For example: Student A asks Student B “Did you do your homework last night?” Student B waits to answer while the rest of the class asks and answers the same question with their partner. The class will then work with their partner to predict Student B’s answer which they can note on small white or blackboards. Student B then gives their answer with the class revealing their own guesses. Teams can receive points for accurate answers. This is nice as there is the guessing element along with the production from the whole class.
Mini-board Race - C
Using mini-boards, students race to write a related vocab on the board and pass it behind them. The first team to reach the end wins.
Missing Word Dictogloss - R
Ask students to number 1-20 in their notebooks. Tell students that they are going to listen to a story. When the teacher says “mhm”, they must guess and write the word in their books. Place story on IWB/Board. Read story stopping at the blanks. Tell students you are going to read the story again, this time, you are going to give them the first letter of each word to help. Read again. Students can peer check at this point. Read one more time, revealing another letter. Students check again before given the answers.
News Story - R
Divide the class into 4 to 5 teams. Recite a short news article or story with 5-20 facts. After you recite the story, ask the class questions about specifics from your story. The team who answers the most questions correctly wins.
Ninja Slap - R
Similar to 'What’s The Time Mr. Wolf' except students try to sneak towards the vocab card without being seen moving by the teacher/students at the front of the classroom.
Number Me - R
The teacher places flashcards after initial vocabulary input and writes numbers under each flashcard. The teacher and TA can then engage in a short dialogue using the target language for the lesson. For example: “Where have you been this morning?” “I've been to the museum.” The students will either hold up the correct number of fingers for the corresponding flashcard or they can write it on a small blackboard or whiteboard. The value of this method is in reviewing the meaning of vocabulary while passively introducing the students to the target language of the lesson. This can be team or individual depending upon how much communication there is between students.
Opposites - W
Have a list of adjectives prepared that the class should be familiar with. Divide the class into 4 teams. One student from each team comes to the front of class to write on the board. Say an adjective from the list and each student must write the opposite adjective on the board. The fastest student (with correct spelling) earns their team a point.
Pass the Ball - CR
Teacher plays music and students pass the ball around the room. Teacher stops the music and holds up a flash card. The student who is holding the ball needs to say what the flash card is of. The teacher then prompts the whole class to pronounce the word. Variation: For more production practice, when the music stops the teacher can ask the class to check with the person sitting next to them and use the target language before asking the student who has the ball. “Where have they been?” “They've been to the market.”
Pass the Paper - F
This is a useful and involving method of production that includes all of the students in production at one time. Students will work in groups of four. The teacher will provide an initial statement which uses the target language. The students will then build their story from the original statement with each team member writing one statement and then passing the paper to the next team member who will add a new sentence. Once the stories have been completed, they can be shared with another group who can check for accuracy. This works quite well for conditionals but is adaptable to other language and grammar points. This can be freer or more controlled depending upon how much repetition there is.
Pictionary - W
Divide the class into 2 teams. Bring one student from each team to the front of class and show them a word or phrase. The students at the front draw a picture of the word or phrase on the board for their team to guess. The first team to guess wins a point. Repeat with the next student.
Picture Dictation - R
Students get a piece of paper. Ask them to draw a box. Use prepositions like the cloud is above the box, the pizza is on the box, the man is next to the box. Remember to check after each preposition by calling out a student to draw the same thing on the board. At the end of the activity again call out students and tell them to write the correct prepositions next to the drawings. Production Extension: If you can provide room, then the students can write a description of where the different items are. They can then share with a partner.
Point of View Pictionary - W
The teacher will draw supersize pictures of general day to day items on the board though a bit at a time and not in a regular sequence. The students must view the picture discuss with their partner and guess what it is. This can be used to set the context (for example: pictures of animals for a conservation topic) with a team reward for the teams with the most correct answers. Students can respond by writing on mini-boards. The teacher can also ask for student volunteers to draw their own picture. Functional language can be provided for discussing ideas.
Prediction Info-Gap - R
Divide students into groups of 5-6 depending on number of words you have. Assign each group member a letter, A-F and then tell all students to close their eyes. Post the first word on the board and ask As to open their eyes and remember. Tell As to close eyes, take down the first word and replace with the second. Ask Bs to open their eyes and remember. Continue in this way from A-F. When each member has seen and remembered their word, ask the groups to open their eyes again. Tell them they now have 3-4 minutes to discuss what they think the listening is going to be about based on the words they saw. Monitor and do general feedback. Play listening to check predictions.
Riddles - W
This is a great warm-up activity for advanced classes. Write a simple riddle on the board and see if the students can guess the answer:
“What starts with p, ends and e, and has a million letters?” – Post office.
“What do the letter T and an Island have in common?” – They are both in the middle of water.
“How many months have 28 days?” – All of them.
Running Dictation - C
Prepare some text to stick at the front of the class and one for the students with missing info. Make sure it is small enough so the students can’t read it while sitting down. Then run like a typical running dictation. students in pairs, one elected to sit and write, the other chosen to run must complete the worksheet together, using the master copy at the front of the classroom.
Sentence Showdown - W
Divide the class into 2 teams. One student from each team comes to the board to write. Stand in the middle of the board and write a jumbled sentence. For example, “monkey bananas to eat likes That (That monkey likes to eat bananas)”, “start? does time school What (What time does school start?)”. The first student to write the sentence correctly earns a point for their team. Encourage the teams to help the writers. Harder sentences are worth more points. The team with the most points wins.
Sitting Relay Race - WPC
Students stay in their seats, as the game is played in rows. The first student writes a sentence at the top of a piece of paper, such as "I like cars". He then passes it back to the next student in the row who will add an adjective to the sentence by writing out the sentence again, to read "I like red cars". The paper is then passed back to the third student who will add an adjective to form another sentence like "I like small, red cars" and so on, until everyone in the row has had a turn. The first row to complete the relay race of adding an adjective correctly and passing the paper back is the winning row.
Songs & Chants - WPC
Chanting and singing allow all students in a large class to participate, and may even make shy students feel more comfortable with a group chorus covering individual voices. The teacher may assign different parts of a song or chant to certain parts of the class, and then reverse roles.
Speed Slap - R
Designate numbers to each student in each team (usually 4 teams) each with a students numbered 1-12. Call out the vocab card and number and they must race up to slap. Calling out in quick succession works well in creating energy. Can get a bit hectic but who doesn’t like that!
Spelling Race - W
Prepare a set of 6-10 words that relate to the prior lesson. Split the class into teams of 5-10 depending on the length of the word. Tell students to nominate one Team Captain. Ask Captains to come to the front of the room. Either show or say the word that the teams need to spell. Captains race back to their teams and coordinate the spelling of the word. When the team has the word, they must hold it up. Award points for 1st team to spell correctly.
Stop the Bus - WP
Draw a table on the board with 4 or 5 categories (e.g. colours, fruits, animals, verbs, countries). Small groups of students copy the table on a miniboard or a piece of paper. The teacher calls out a letter and the students race to find a word from each category beginning with the given letter. The first team to find one example of each shouts 'Stop the Bus!' and wins a point. Repeat with different letters. You can make use of this activity to drill pronunciation as required.
Strip Stories - F
Write stories using four to six lines of dialogue. Each line should be succinct enough for your students to memorize in a few minutes. Print the "strips" of your stories on colored paper. Use a total of six colors. Each line of each story should appear on a different color of paper, so that when gathered, no story would have two pieces of the same color paper. In class, pass out the slips randomly. Before telling students what is going to happen, have them write their line down, repeat it out loud, say it to another person, or however else you would like them to memorize it. Tell your students to put away everything, and collect the strips of paper. Tell them, "Make a rainbow.” They will be forced to repeat their memorized lines again and again as they search for the other members of their story, and then as they work to organize their story in their group.
Sumo Push - C
Two students come to the front of the classroom and stand at opposite ends of the classroom facing each other parallel to the board. Teacher asks questions to both students, first to answer moves 1 step/square forward until they meet. Then they must turn back to back and on the count of 3, push each other towards the starting area. You can draw a skull and crossbones on the board to show it’s the 'death zone'. Also it’s recommended you pic similar sized students for obvious reasons.
Surveys - F
Prepare surveys for mingling activities or pair work. Make sure that each student writes their team name on the back and announce one completed survey equals 1 point/star etc. A gameshow style quiz can be performed after to check the students were not making up the answers.
Talking Cards - C
Teacher will bring in a deck of cards. Each card will be assigned a question or topic. The class will be divided into four (4) teams. A student from each team will come up and pick a card and will then need to talk about the topic/question for at least 30 seconds for a point. Variation: Divide students into groups of four (4) hand each group a few cards and a paper with the assigned topics. Each group then plays and takes turns to talk about the topic. Tip: Teacher and TA will need to monitor the activity to ensure students are doing it properly. Make notes on any good language or language that needs further clarification or practice. Provide whole class feedback on monitored language.
Teacher Says - R
Students perform the action or not depending on whether teacher says "Teacher Says". Can be applied to jobs, emotions, adjectives, colours etc.
Team Projects - F
Consider using some projects in your classroom to help stimulate and engage your older students. These can be completed in groups or four or two depending upon resources and class set-up. These projects should build off of the existing language/vocabulary of the lesson but provide engagement by assigning a task for the students to complete which they will then share with another group or pair for feedback and further language practice. Examples include: **Illustrated rules for different places in town such as the library, pool, cinema or school. Good for modal practice and is engaging for students. The can then judge another group’s rules and note which rules they might consider adding. **Flyer for a travel agency: Students will work together to create a flyer which highlights the activities provided by a travel agency. They can then take turns asking and answering questions about the activities, cost and details. **Restaurant Menu: Students develop their own menu which they can then use to roleplay scenes from a restaurant. This can be exploited in a number of ways including for countable and uncountable nouns….polite language for restaurants….modals (may, would, could, can). **Island Design: Students design their own island which they draw and illustrate to highlight specific details or features. This is great for a topic lesson or can be adopted to specific language points such as present perfect
Team to Team - P
Divide the class into four teams by rows and provide each team with a number 1-4. Teams 1 and 3 then stand up and ask and answer using any given target language with the teacher prompting with language and flashcards. As Teams 1 and 3 ask and answer, Teams 2 and 4 must listen and determine how accurate the pronunciation was. This keeps all the students involved by providing a listening task combined with the pronunciation practice. Points are awarded for accuracy, participation and good listening.
Telephone Relay - C
Two students - A and B - are given to two sheets at opposite ends of the classroom. Using the students between them to relay sentences until they have the correct information to complete both their sheets. students must whisper the sentences. Similar to the activity whisper penalise for shouting or cheating.
The Price is Right - WF
Divide the class into two teams. Have one member from each team come to the front of the class to guess the price of objects prepared in advance by the teacher. Students in the “audience” call out prices to help their teammate. Note that the teacher needs to determine the prices before hand and have them written out on index cards to display at the end of the guessing. If students disagree with the price set by the teacher, they are welcome to argue their point, but in English. To do this, the contestant may return to the group for consultation. Variation: Instead of numbers, give students a word that they need to spell.
Tic-Tac-Toe (1) - W
Fill the 3x3 grid with questions, vocab, grammar, language focus etc. Have two students play the game on the board while the other students in the class (working in pairs) play the same game on their respective white boards. They can also offer “hints” to the main team players.
Tic-Tac-Toe (2) - P
Create 6 tic-tac-toe grids on a sheet of A4. Each of the 9 items in the grid represents a word or sound for drilling. Students play all 6 games, giving them the opportunity to practice all 9 items.
Tongue Twister Showdown - WP
Prepare a list of tongue twisters and print off two copies of each one. Have at least 15 tongue twisters prepared. Cut out each tongue twister onto a slip of paper, each with 2 copies. Divide the class into 2 teams. Have one student from each team come to the front of the class. Hand each student the same tongue twister and allow both of them to try to pronounce it correctly. The student with the best pronunciation earns their team a point.
Trivia - W
Write trivia questions on the board for the students to work with their partner to answer. This can be used to set the context (for example: trivia about geography for the topic of places or land features) with a team reward for the teams with the most correct answers. Students can respond by small black or white boards. Functional language can be provided for discussing ideas. For more difficulty, you can read the question aloud and have the students write down the answer and then hold up the board when they are finished. This is a timed exercise so you only allow them 10-15 seconds to complete the answer. The students then must verbalize their answer.
True / False - R
Students perform TPR actions in response to the teacher's questions. "Is it an apple?” students sit for no, stand for yes etc.
What's Wrong with Mr. Monkey? - F
Students asking yes/no questions must find out what is wrong with Mr Monkey. Draw a monkey on the board who is sad. Elicit some reasons as to why he is sad. Depending on your target vocab, adapt the reasons to Mr Monkey. For example if it is food, say Mr Monkey is Hungry. "Does he like bananas?" "Does he like Apples?" put a maximum number of questions allowed to be asked before the Monkey dies/runs away etc. Can be changed to suit various target language.
Whispers race - C
The teacher starts at one end of the class room opposite the blackboard. The teacher writes target language on a mini-whiteboard and the students must relay that message towards the blackboard by whispering till it reaches the designated team writer, who then writes that sentence on the board. Works very well for speaking practice and displaying form. Minus points for shouting the answer or moving from their chairs.
Word Relay - W
Divide the class into 2 teams, each team forms a line to the whiteboard. The first student in line writes a word. The next student in line writes a word that begins with the last letter of the previous word. Turtle, elephant, turn, neighbor, read, draw, … until every student from a particular team has written a word. Make the game difficult by changing the variables (4-letter words only, nouns only, 5-letter words only, etc.)
Word Traveller - C
Ask the class, “If you could travel anywhere, where would you go?” Elicit different countries from students and write them on the board. Once you’ve listed a bunch of countries on the board, divide the class into 4 or 5 teams. Have a list of historical landmarks and their corresponding countries prepared in advance (Eiffel Tower: France, Pyramids: Egypt, Statue of Liberty: U.S.A., etc.) Ask the class, “Where can I visit the… (insert landmark here)? The team that answers the most correct questions wins.