Potential Games for School

From Dave's ESL cafe: http://www.eslcafe.com/forums/teacher/

Blindfold Course:
Make an obstacle course in your classroom (use desks, chairs, pillows
etc…) put a blindfold on a student and have the rest of the class
guide him/her by using simple instructions (e.g. walk two steps, turn
right etc…)

Blindfold Guessing:
Blindfold a student and have them guess what they are touching. This
works great with little plastic animals and toy fruits. This is a
great way to review, stationary, classroom objects etc…

Blindfold Guess Who:
Have the children sit in a circle. Have one child sit in the center,
blindfolded. The children then one by one say “Who am I?” and the
child in the middle guesses who it is talking. I usually have each
child guess from about three different voices.

Separate the class into two or more teams. Put the entire alphabet on
the board in a scramble of letters here and there. Have one child
from each team come up to the board, when ready yell out a letter.
The first person to find and circle the correct letter wins a point
for their team. This game also works for numbers, words, or even

I play this game with my youngest class. They really respond to it
even though it is really simple. This game can be used with a wide
variety of objects or pictures of objects (plastic fruit and toys
work well). One by one, I ask a student “What do you want?” (Or
depending on their levels of English “What do you like?” or, “What
would you like?”)The students then choose from the objects shown, and
should in turn reply (e.g. “I want a banana:”, or “A banana, please”)
I then say “Here you are” and hand them the item they have asked for.
This game is great for teaching “please” and “thank you” as well as
reviewing objects. When all the objects are gone, you can then play
the “May I have” or ‘Give me “ game.

You should have these snowballs pre-made before class with wet
tissues (if wet tissues are too messy, anything heavy enough to fly
that far will work, even paper airplanes). Have a series of
flashcards on the board. Split the class into two or more teams. Have
one child from each team stand up behind a line. Yell out an object
shown on one of the flashcards at the front. Whoever gets closest to
hitting the correct object, scores a point for his/her team.

Telephone Game:
This is an old game, but there are many versions I like to play with
my children, and they really love it. The easiest variation of this
game is to have all your children sit in a circle and whisper a word
to the student sitting next to you, who in turn whispers it to the
next child. The last person to receive the message says it out loud
and it is usually completely backwards to what it was to begin with.
Another version of this game (which I prefer to play, because I teach
ESL classes) is to have the class separated into two or more teams.
Have the students sit front to back in chairs in 2 rows (everyone
should be facing the board at the front, which needs to be a board
they can draw on.) Whisper a word, or show the last child in each row
a picture and have them in turn whisper it to the person in front of
them the last child to receive the message then draws it on the
board. The child who draws the correct object on the board wins a
point for his/her team. I like to show each team a different picture,
so that they aren’t able to copy each other, or cheat by listening in.

There Is/There Are:
To practice ‘there is’ and ‘there are’, give your children a list of
questions. For the younger students it is better to keep the
questions limited to about the classroom. The older children, if
allowed could run around the school, even the school yard to answer
the questions you give them. The questions could be:
How many windows are there in the classroom (or school)?
How many doors are there in the school?
How many teachers are there in the school?
How many classes are there in the school?
How many students are there in the class?
How many chairs are there in the classroom?

Time bomb:
For this game you need a timer (such as an egg timer or an alarm
clock.) Set the timer and pass it to a student, ask him/her a
question, once answered, have the child pass the timer to the next
student, in turn does the same. The student left holding the timer
when it goes off loses a life, or is out for the game (for my younger
children, I have them write their names in the air with their bum,
which they think is hysterical)

Have a supply of flashcards made (question or picture on one side,
numbers or letters on the other), ‘Tornado cards’ (flashcards with
numbers or letters on one side and a tornado picture on the other).
Split the class into teams of two or more. Have the pile of cards at
the front, picture (or question) facing down. Have a student come to
the front and choose a card. If the card has a picture or question on
the card, the child then tells you what the picture is of, or answers
the question. If the child answers correctly, then he/she draws a
line to draw a house, if the child picks a tornado card, then they
blows down their opposing team’s house. The first team to complete
their house wins.

What’s Missing? :
Have a series of flashcards (depicting just about anything you are
reviewing) made and stick them on the board. Give the children a few
moments to memorize what is on the board, turn the board around or
cover it, and remove one of them. Ask the students “what’s missing?”
if you are playing in teams you can play that the first student to
guess what is missing wins a point for his/her team. There are many
different ways I like to display the items, I have used a big fruit
bowl and filled it with fruit, or, a closet filled with clothes… the
options are unlimited.

Daniel Gray
Seocho, Seoul

Read my blog at happylunatic@blogspot.com

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