1. ESL Kings
This is a classroom friendly variation of the popular game “Kings”. Take out a deck of shuffled cards and spread them face down on a table. Have students pick up a card one at a time, and each face card requires a separate action. If the student pulls a number card nothing happens and the next student must pick a card.
Jack= Tell a joke in English.
Queen = Get asked a general question by the teacher.
King = Karaoke. Student must sing a line of a song.
Ace = Ask a question to another student.
2. Classroom Jeopardy
This requires some time to set up, but there are several Jeopardy power point templates to help you create a jeopardy game in the classroom. Students can be divided into teams and take chances choosing from the Jeopardy board for a chance to earn points. This is a great way to review old and new material.
3. Questions in a hat
Have all of the students write a question for other students and have them fold them up and put them in a hat or cup. Students get to blindly take a question from the hat and answer it for the class one by one.
4. Vocabulary stop
Make a power-point featuring pictures of the vocabulary that you have recently learned. Each student has a turn where they get to yell stop as you quickly shuffle through the pictures, and they have to identify the English word/phrase associated with each picture. Works well in teams.
5. Story sentences
Give each student in the class a piece of lined paper. The students get 3 minutes to start a story, then after the 3 minute alarm, pass it over for the next student to continue.
6. Word Searches
You can create custom word searchesin seconds using sites like this. Review vocabulary words and improve student letter familiarity for younger students, or spelling for older students. Print a bunch to keep on hand for early finishers.
7. Words from a hat
In a big classroom have all of the students write down as many nouns, verbs, and adjectives as they can on tiny pieces of paper. Put all of the words into a hat. Divide students into two teams and have one volenteer from each team come up to the front of the class one at a time. Each student has 5 minutes to take words from the hat and
8. Monster Stairs
A variation of “hangman”. Just draw a giant staircase with a monster at the bottom, each wrong letter is added to another stair going downwards. Students have as many wrong guesses as they do stairs.
9. Teacher Says
This is basically “Simon Says” where you teach an action for each verb, and students that either do the wrong action, or do the action without hearing “teacher says” first are out. This is great for teaching and reviewing verbs.