At the beginning – or the end of a topic,
write down one of the key terms e.g. E D
U C A T I O N.
The students have to write down as many
words as they can beginning with each
letter that is relevant to the topic. E.g E
– exam/expectations etc. D – detention,
Split the class into groups and the
winning group is the one with the most
Each group’s suggestions can be written
up and discussed.
Add to the Picture
This is a good activity for a small
Use the whiteboard.
Draw a line. Say, ‘This is the ground’.
Call up a student and ask, or show them,
they have to add something. They may
plane/sun/birds/car etc, whatever they
Then they have to say what it is, ‘This is
Add to the Picture Cont...
Or ask the others if they can name the
Each student gets a turn.
At the end, they then each say a
sentence to describe the picture.
Good for practising prepositions.
You can make this into a longer, writing
activity by having them copy the picture
and write up the sentences.
You can then have a True/false session,
based on the picture they have created.
A Story Treasure Hunt
A class selects a well-known fable or folktale.
The plot is simplified into a sequence of events that
can be transcribed onto cards with short sections of
the tale on each.
Students hide the cards throughout the school or
A treasure map showing the exact location where all
the cards are hidden, is given to another class (Or,
with clues, one card can lead to the next).
Groups of students must find the cards and assemble
them in correct order.
The treasure is finding the WHOLE story.
Two classes can trade treasure hunts by putting the
stories on two different-coloured cards.
Back to the Board
One student comes out and stands with his
back to the board.
You then – get the rest of the class to check
that he doesn’t take a peek –
Write a word or draw a simple diagram.
The rest of the class must describe it, or give
clues, but they cannot say the word.
Split them into teams to make it a competion.
Great for students at all levels.
Back to the Board
KEYSTAGES 2/3 S
Pupils get in groups of three.
Two of them can see the blackboard; the other
one has his/her back turned.
The teacher writes or sticks a word on the
The two children that can see the blackboard
have to give clues to the third one to be able to
guess it: “It’s a kind of food”, “It’s sweet”, etc.
KEYSTAGES 1/2 S
Each pupil uses his/her finger as a pencil and
writes a word on his/her classmate’s back. This
classmate tries to guess the word.
If he or she guesses it before the “writer”
finishes, he/she get three points.
If he or she guesses it after the word has been
written once, both children get two points.
If the words has to be written a second time, they
only get one point.
Beat the Clock
Students love this!!!
They take turns in the hotseat.
The rest of the class prepare questions – the object of
the exercise is for the hotseater not to say ‘yes’ or ‘no’.
So the students need to write questions which are the
most likely to elicit a ‘yes’ or a ‘no.’
This can be general questions, ‘Have you got any sisters?’
or it could be based on a topic you have studied ‘Do plants
need light to photosynthesise?’ etc.
This is an excellent way to practise tag questions, as
these are the most likely to get a ‘yes’ or ‘no’. ‘Mr Bean went
to the dentist’s, didn’t he?’
Beat the Clock Cont...
1) Students cannot prevaricate – ‘maybe’ ‘I don’t
know’ ‘obviously’ etc are not allowed. I sometimes
insist on a full sentence. ‘Mr Bean did go to the
dentist’s.’ ‘Plants need light for photosynthesis.’
2) No nodding or shaking of the head.
3) If the hotseater answers the questions for
more than 90 seconds, then he has beaten the
4)If he says ‘yes’ or ‘no’, then he is out. I use my
metal bin and a boardmarker at this point, but if
you can get hold of a drum or a bell or
something, that is great. I ask a student to do
this and there are alwways plenty of volunteers.
This is a great revision tool!
The teacher draws a large beetle on the blackboard and
labels each part with numbers from 1 to 6.
Divide the class into groups of four/five people.
Children can draw the different parts when they obtain
the corresponding number rolling the dice.
Children who complete the whole drawing the first win.
The rest continue playing until the whole group
completes their drawings. It can be used with other
themes such as vehicles.
Two dice can be used in order to increase the number of
ALL KEYSTAGES S
The teacher can give pupils the grid with the different
drawings or can give them the grid where pupils have to
draw six-nine pictures from some that the teacher shows
The teacher puts the pictures in a box and mixes them.
He or she pulls out one and shows it to the children,
saying: “This is a bicycle”.
Children who have the drawing cover the space with a
counter. The fist child to cover all the spaces on his/her
grid wins and he or she can become the caller.
ALL KEYSTAGES S
Make a birthday wheel at the beginning of the
birthdays take place each week/ month.
Make a point of playing popular games when it is
birthday to you”.
Box of Words
Get a bag or a box and put lots of words on pieces of
paper in it.
Go round the class – each student has to take a word,
read it and either make a sentence out of it, or give the
If you like, you can write each student’s sentence on
Then, the others can correct the sentences and/or
make suggestions for improvement.
This can be used to practise basic English with
beginners, or with key words or new vocabulary for
more advanced classes.
Or, if you’ve been studying a novel or a play, your words
can be based on that.
The teacher draws 4-6 vertical columns across
Each column should represent a theme.
Divide each column into five squares of equal size
that represents a question.
In each theme there are five questions of
different levels that punctuate from 10 to 50.
The class is divided into pairs or trios. Each
group chooses a name.
The first group chooses a theme and number (We
would like animals for 20 or Animals for 20) and
the teacher makes the corresponding question.
After a short time, if they answer correctly, the
teacher writes the name of the group in the square.
If not, the next group can answer it or choose
Play two rounds and the teacher adds up the
Form a circle with chairs.
Number of chairs equal to students’ number.
All the pupils sit except the teacher.
He writes a sentence in the blackboard as an
example: Yesterday I watched tv. He explains the
children to listen to the sentences.
If they watched TV yesterday, they must change
If not, they must not move. The teacher plays with
the children, and then the after the teacher’s turn
the pupils begin to tell their sentences.
He then acts it out – he mustn’t speak or mime.
The other team has to guess the word or
Put a time limit on it, then pass it over to his
Divide the class into 2 teams.
One member comes out and he takes a card
off the top of the pile – written on it is what
you want him to act out e.g. ‘dig the garden’.
If you want to make it easy, you can get the
students to prepare the cards.
Divide your students into teams.
Line them up, facing the board.
Give a new or a key word to the students at
They must use their finger to write the word
on the next student’s back.
This continues along the lines.
The winning team is the first to reach the
board and write the word correctly.
They gain an extra point if they can use the
word in a sentence, or give the definition.
For beginners, work with letters of the
alphabet – upper and lower case.
Two teams, each forming a circle.
Whisper the key phrase into the ears of
the first student in line.
They then whisper to each other, round
The winning team is the one whose final
statement most resembles the original.
ALL KEYSTAGES S
A sentence is whispered around the circle of
The last student to receive the message either
says it aloud or writes it on the board.
A variation of this is to get the students into two
lines (team A and B) in front of the board, so the
first student in both lines is really near the
board and the teams are lined up behind him/her.
You whisper a sentence or a question to the two
students at the end of the line and they pass it
down the line until it reaches the students
nearest the board who then have to write the
sentence on the board.
Collaborative Class Surveys
The responses of the whole class are
collected to make a survey display.
Examples: What is your favourite colour/
animal? What colour eyes have you got?
How many people are there in your family?
Compare and Contrast
Give two pictures and ask the students to
make comparisons between them.
E.g. Harry Potter and Gandalph, Mona Lisa
and Medusa, 2 famous sportsmen or women,
someone from the distant past and someone
from the present.
Give each child a blank piece of paper. The
four basic steps are as follows:
They write something, according to the
question you give them.
They fold their paper over, so that nobody
can see what they’ve written.
They give the paper to the person sitting next
They repeats steps 1 to 3 with a new question.
Finally, let the children unravel their
consequence sheet and read the description.
The students have to count round the class
– in 3s, (or 4s, 5s etc).
Then, start from a high number
and they have to count down in threes.
Describe and Draw
Put the students in pairs.
Give each a picture.
Student A describes his picture (but
mustn’t show it) to Student B, who then has
to draw it.
At the end, they compare their pictures and
discuss what is different.
Then they swap roles.
prepositions and for practising ‘has/have
got’ etc as well as for advanced students.
You can do this as a whole class activity, with
just one set of dominoes.
Give each student one or 2.
On one box, there is a question, on the other
The first student reads out his question, then
the student with the right answer puts his
hand up, reads it out and then reads his
This can be done in pairs.
Draw, Fold and Pass
ALL KEYSTAGES S
The object is to draw crazy people or monsters and
afterwards describe them.
The teacher gives each child a piece of paper.
They draw a head and then fold the page back at the base of
the head and everyone passes their paper to the person on the
They draw the next part of the body and fold the papers back
again and pass them on again.
The drawing game continues until the feet.
When all the pictures are finished, unfold them to reveal the
In turn, the children describe the pictures using all the
phrases they know.
The theme of the pictures can be changed: vehicles, buildings,
The teacher dictates some words that
Children have to draw in a sheet of paper.
Students stand in a circle.
They count around.
The student who says 11 is out and has to sit
can say up to 3 numbers, so
when there are just a few left, they can
calculate how to get each other out.
Or twenty one...
W V G P
They are useful to work grammatical
It consists on an amount of strips stapled
together that can be combined between them.
I call this ‘Big Cats’ because I teach boys and they
like that better.
The students must be seated in a circle, on chairs.
You need at least 12 students,
I would say. Go round and allot each a cat – tiger, lion,
panther, etc (3, 4, or 5 cats, depending on group size.)
Stand in the middle.
Explain: ‘When I say ‘lion’, all the lions have to get up
and swap seats.
When I say ‘tiger’ all the tigers have to swap seats.
When I say ‘Big cats!’, everybody has to get up and
Fruit Bowl Cont...
Then, do this twice.
By now, the students are wondering what the
big deal is.
Third time round, take away a chair!
Play the game again – someone is left without
He must give a forfeit, or answer a question.
Be careful! This can be very lively, particularly
on a ‘Big Cat’ round.
I only play this at the end of term.
The students love it.
Get Rid of It
KEYSTAGES 2/3 S
You need two sets of cards.
White cards for the words and another colour (yellow?) for
Put all questions in a bag or hat at the start of the game.
Give each student at least three word cards, placed in front
of them on their desks.
Choose one card from the hat and read the question.
Students study their word cards.
Whoever has the corresponding word can get rid of it.
The winner gets rid of all his cards first.
Guess the Object
Take or draw a picture.
Then take 5 pieces of paper (all the same size
as the original picture.).
Cut various sized holes in them.
Put them all on the picture.
Take one off at a time – can they guess what
the object is, or where – street scene etc.
Each time, they are allowed 5 questions to
help them guess.
You can do this as a whole class activity, or
put them in teams.
Guess the Number
KS ALL S L R W V G P
The teacher thinks about a number from 1
to X (depending on the level).
Pupils have to guess the number.
The teacher gives as a clue: “More than
two” or “Less than 10”.
Pupil can get the role of the teacher and
think about a number.
You need post-it notes , or pieces of paper and
Put the students in pairs.
Write the target words on the post-it notes.
Stick one on each of the students’ foreheads –
without letting the student see what is on his
The task is for each partner to guess what is on
his forehead, by asking questions of his partner..
Is it an animal? Is it green? Etc.
The answer can only be ‘yes’ or ‘no’.
Don’t forget this old favourite!
It makes a great starter activity and can be
used at any level –
E.g. for beginners – classroom objects.
For more advanced students, key words in any
Just write on the board, with students taking
a turn, or use a generator.
KEYSTAGE 2/3 S
Firstly, pick a word the children know and draw a dash for each
letter on the whiteboard.
Divide the class into two teams and have each team call out a
letter in turn.
If the letter the students choose is in the word, write that letter
above the appropriate dash on the board.
If the letter is not in the word, write that letter at a different
location on the board, and draw one line of the gallows.
Continue this process until either one of the teams determines the
word or until a team is "executed" (i.e. when you have completed
the drawing of the gallows, including the hanging stick man).
Award points to the winning team.
Divide the class into groups of four/five students.
Give four flashcards from a single word family (animals,
transports, food, etc) to each member of the group.
The students look carefully at their cards, then all the
cards for the group mixed together and dealt out
randomly to the students.
Students have to recompose their word family by asking
in turn for the cards they need: Have you got the bus?
There are many variations on this activity.
Put one student ‘in role’ – he has to be a
character in a book/film you’ve studied
and the rest of the class prepare
questions to ask.
You could: Make question cards with the
wh- question words and give them out.
The students have to make questions with
the word they are given.
Or, allot ‘tense cards’ – past simple
questions with did, present with do or does
and future with will.
Or an activity you can use for a speaking lesson at any
Bring in some photos from your personal album, or the
Include photos of people – family, friends. Photos of
places/big cities/countries you have visited/food/film
trailer posters/cars etc.
Tell the students ‘These are important to me’ – or ‘I have
plenty to say about each of these photos, but I need the
Give them some time to write as many questions as they
Or assign different photos to different students.
A fun way to practise making questions.
Teacher says "I spy with my little eye
something that begins with B".
Students try to guess the object (e.g.
Colours are a good alternative for younger
students ("I spy with my little eye
something that is red").
‘I Went to the Market and I
Another old favourite.
Can be used as a category game, if you’ve been
learning clothes, or foods etc.
The first student starts off,
Then it goes round the class, with each student
having to remember all the others’ answers.
This can be varied. ‘I went to the zoo and I
saw a ...’ or with verbs ‘I went on holiday and I ...
played on the beach.’ etc
Jumbled Words and Jumbled
For beginners, you can give out individual
packs of the alphabet.
For more advance students, you can have
Key Words Chart Tally
Ask some students to keep a tally of how many
times you say a certain word.
This can be a way of allowing a beginner to
participate in a more advanced lesson.
KEYSTAGE 3 S
The teacher shows a list of words
Pupils have to memorise them for one
Then, the teacher hides them and they
have to write them down.
Kinaesthetic True or False
Place two posters at opposite ends of the
classroom - TRUE and FALSE.
Read out your statements, students have to
move to the position they think is correct.
Students who are wrong have to sit down.
Continue until there is a winner.
Then, move onto the next statement.
At the end of ther activity, ask students to
recite, or write down as many of the true
statements as they can remember.
PURPOSE: The K-W-L strategy allows students to take inventory of what
they already know and what they want to know. Students can categorize
information about the topic that they expect to use.
the chalkboard, on a handout, or on students' individual clean sheets,
three columns should be drawn.
Column 1 K, Column 2 W, Column 3 L.
reading, students fill in the Know column with everything they
already know about the topic. This helps generate their background
Then have students predict what they might learn about the topic,
which might follow a quick glance at the topic headings, pictures, and
charts that are found in the reading. This helps set their purpose for
reading and focuses their attention on key ideas.
Alternatively, you might have students put in the middle column what
they want to learn about the topic.
After reading, students should fill in their new knowledge gained from
reading the content. They can also clear up misperceptions about the
topic which might have shown up in the Know column before they
actually read anything. This is the stage of metacognition: did they
get it or not?
To familiarize students with names of
objects found in the classroom, label
everything with an index card that has
the item's name on it.
The next day, remove the cards and go
through them one at a time and place
them on the correct item together.
The third day let them label whatever
they can on their own.
I continue this for a few days.
Label It Cont…
When they are able to independently label
most of the items, I surprise them by
having them labelled incorrectly.
Then they have to straighten out the
Adapt this to any noun-based vocabulary
list (e.g. types of foods, body parts, parts
of a room in a house, animals, etc.) that
you can post pictures of.
ALL KEYSTAGES S
The class is divided into pair or groups.
The teacher writes some words about a topic on
the blackboard and gives each group a set of
small cards where children write each letter of
the words written on the blackboard.
Then they have to mix the letters and then
recompose each word. The teacher walks
around checking the words and asking the
children to read out the words.
For older students, the teacher can write
sentences better than words and pupils have to
recompose the sentence word by word, stead
letter by letter.
Little Light Ball
Throw this to the student you want to give
They return the ball as they answer.
Makes for a good, fast question and
After you have studied a book, make a few
slides or a worksheet with just the main
Elicit a recount by asking questions, ‘What
happened before..’ ‘Why did he go there?’
‘Who did he see?’ etc.
Tried and trusted; always works.
Picture-word or word-definition match
Make it kinaesthetic by giving the cards
out and asking students to match them up.
Get great resources from MES-English.
The teacher divides the class into groups of four/five people
and give each group a set of ten picture pairs.
They shuffle the cards and place them face down in a grid
A child turns two cards face up and says “This is a shirt and
this is a tracksuit”.
If the two cards match, the child keeps the pair and has
another turn. If not, the child puts the cards face down again
and the next child turns over two cards.
The child who collects the most pairs wins.
Children have to look for opposites, singular/plural, and cards
from a common topic
Noughts and Crosses
You draw 9 boxes on the board and use some
blutack to stick your flashcards/key
vocabulary face down on the boxes.
Split the class into two teams.
They take turns to turn a card over.
If it’s a picture and they know the word, or if
it’s a word and they can give the definition,
they get their nought or their cross.
The winning team is the first to get 3 noughts
or 3 crosses in a line.
This can be adapted to pair work.
Noughts and Crosses
The teacher makes a 3x3 square on the blackboard.
The teacher turns nine flashcards round and sticks them
on the squares.
The class is divided into two teams: Noughts and Crosses.
A team starts saying a number from 1 to 9.
The teacher turns the flashcard round.
If the team knows how the word is called in English, the
teacher will replace the flashcard with a nought or a
cross, depending on the team.
The objective is to put three noughts or crosses in line.
Picture Dictation in Pairs
Give students a list of objects and get them to
draw their own pictures with all those objects in
The students then work in pairs.
One student describes their picture to their
partner and their partner draws what they hear.
They then swap roles and afterwards they compare
the pictures they drew with their original drawings
pointing out the differences.
Place the Nose
Draw a blank face on the board.
Call out one student – he has to
He has to draw the nose in the right place
the others have to give directions.
Give each student a different coloured
and see who gets the best results.
Good for practising prepositions
A bit of fun!
Post it Marking
When marking, instead of correcting the
student’s mistakes in his book, write them on
post –it notes,
Then the student has to correct his own
This way, you know the student has taken
Key words or phrases in the passage you are
Strategically place your bin.
Give the students a sheet of paper and ask them to
make a paper plane.
Then ask them to discuss the odds of them getting
their plane in the bin.
You can bring in lots of language. ‘Likely’ ‘No chance’
‘Impossible’ ‘Certain’ ‘50-50’ ‘6:1’ etc.
Move the bin around as they get better at it!
Provide Writing Frames
This can be in the form of time adverbs for
a sequence, ‘First, After that, Suddenly....
Or with specific vocabulary.
You can also give support for the answer
E.g. Instead of ‘Where did he go next?’ ‘Say
where he went next.’
ALL KEYSTAGES S
Reading should be an enjoyable activity.
If you have the facilities, make a reading corner.
It should be a quiet and comfortable place where
children can sit and read.
When they finished the book, ask them to write a
book review that can be collected in a library file
so that students can look at each other’s reviews.
Read and Report Back
Instead of reading from a book, pin the
passages up round the classroom.
In pairs, one student reads the passage,
then reports back to his partner, who writes
Then, they go up and read the passage to
This makes reading and writing fun.
Rhyming Pair Game
This activity is a pronunciation and memory game.
Split the class into small groups and give a rhyming
pairs set of cards for each group with one word on
Ask each group to place all of their cards face
down on the table.
Students must take it in turns to turn over two
They must say the two words out loud to see if
Rhyming Pair Game Cont…
If the two cards rhyme, they can keep
When there are no cards left on the
table, each student counts how many
cards they have to see who the winner is.
For this activity students need to
recognise that some words have a similar
pronunciation even though the spelling is
Ring, Ring, Who Has My Ring?
Skills: asking questions about people; identifying
people by description
Choose a student to begin.
This student steps out of the room.
Hand a ring to another student.
All students in the classroom should see who
receives the ring.
Call student to return to class.
He or she must try to guess who has the ring by
asking various classmates ten or fewer yes/no
Ring, Ring, Who Has My Ring? Cont…
Sample questions include... Does a girl
have the ring? Is he/she wearing tennis
shoes? Is the person who has the ring
wearing something blue?
If the student guesses correctly, he or
she gets another turn (limit three).
If the student guesses incorrectly, the
student who has the ring becomes the
KEYSTAGES 2/3 S
It is a very useful activity because it develops the four skills.
Children are divided into groups of four/five people.
The teacher sits down on a chair in the centre of the classroom
with some sheets of paper that contain some written
information in them.
A child of each group has to run from their seat to teacher’s
seat to read the information and then, he/she has to come back
his/her seat and dictate what she/he has read in the sheet of
Then, other child goes to look for some more information.
KEYSTAGES 2/3 S
Write the alphabet on the board with numbers underneath
Tell the students to write their names on card in the number
code with a slash between each number.
Collect all the cards and give one to each student at random.
The students work out whose name card they have and stand
up when they know those it is.
Make different codes (numbers from 26 to 1/ shapes and
colours instead of numbers)
Write names of objects in code. Students work out the name
and touch or say the name of the object.
Sequencing and Practising Connectives
At intermediate or advanced levels.
Take a story or report and cut it into sections for the
students to put in the right order.
Also, take out all the time connectives and substitute ‘then’.
When the students have reassembled the passage correctly,
say, ‘I am going to read it out loud. How could it be
Split them into pairs or groups, and see which group can
substitute ‘then’ with the best connectives.
Give out a list of suitable connectives if you need to.
Let the students read out their versions and discuss who has
done the best job.
KEYSTAGES 2/3 S
Write the words of a sentence on the board in
Uses structures that reflect the language you are
Show the children how to decipher the sentences.
Remind them about capital letters and full stops.
Show the Card
KEYSTAGES 2/3 S
The teacher gives a set of cards with a picture
or word using several minimal pairs for each
For example: sheep/ship, but/boot, bed/bad,
why/way, bean/bin, sleep/slip, pig/big, live/life,
The teacher says a word and the students rise
up the appropriated card.
KEYSTAGE 1 S
The teacher gives an order by saying “Simon says
touch your head”.
Pupils have to imitate the order only if the order
is told after “Simon says”.
If not, they have to rest without doing anything.
If children do the action, they are out.
The last child left in the game becomes the new
It’s an activity to review topics.
Pupils make a big circle.
The teacher throws the ball saying a topic;
the pupil who catches the ball has to say a
word that belongs to this topic and throw the
KEYSTAGES 2/3 S
To associate pictures with sounds
The teacher asks the children to make a sound picture with
sounds which are more difficult for the class
The children draw an object that has this sound such as 'chair'.
Inside the picture of the chair they can write other words with
the same sound such as hair, wear, scared.
This can be an ongoing activity with posters on the walls which
they can add to.
It's a useful way of familiarizing children with some of the sound
/ spelling rules.
This game also helps students who have a visual learning style
Spell it Out
Students have their books and pens ready.
Start spelling the word letter by letter.
The object of this exercise is for them to guess
the word before you finish spelling it.
A fun way to present a spelling test!
KEYSTAGES 2/3 S
The teacher dictates a word letter by letter.
Pupils have to guess the word before the
teacher had told all the letters of the word.
For example: E-L-E-P…. (“Elephant!”)
Divide the class into teams and give each team a set of
Scrabble letters (You always get more of the most
common letters and not so many of the least common).
Get them to spread out the letters on the table so
they’re all facing up.
Then give clues for words you want to test them on, e.g.
‘the day before Wednesday’, students ‘write’ TUESDAY
on the table by selecting the scrabble letters. ‘What’s
this in English?’ – point to things in the classroom, draw
on the board etc.
Once students get the idea, ask one of them to lead the
game and give the clues instead of you.
Nice and simple, great activiity. Good for
Write or draw your items on the board (about
12 is good.)
For beginners, a simple vocabulary item or
letters of the alpahabet.
For mainstream, key words, or main
Invite two students to the board.
Say the word, or give the definition.
The winner is the first to hit the item.
He then wipes it out.
Call another student and repeat the exercise.
You can prepare the items in advance on a slide,
The same activity, except students just hit the
For more advanced students, give the definition,
or some clues.
You can also have a student to give the clues.
They love the competition.
Stop the Bus
Put the students into teams of three or four.
Draw on the board a table like the ones below
and get each team to copy it onto a piece of
Students simply have to think of one item to
go in each category beginning with the set
The first team to finish shouts “Stop the
Stop the Bus Cont…
Check their answers and write them up on the
board and if they are all okay that team wins a
If there are any mistakes in their words, let the
game continue for another few minutes.
If it gets too difficult with certain letters (and
you can’t think of one for each category) reduce
the amount of words they have to get.
You can say. “Ok.
For this round you can Stop the Bus with 4
You have been teaching, now it’s time for the
students to show they have learned!
They have to divide a sheet of plain A4 into 4
or 6 squares.
They need to recount, in sequential order, with
diagrams, the story you have studied, or the
As well as narrative, they may include speech
bubbles, or fact file boxes.
Put the learners into pairs.
Organise pairs of chairs back to back.
If not, ask learners to stand back to back.
This means they cannot see their partners' faces or gestures.
Hand out pairs of role cards, e.g. 1a and 1b, to each pair.
Demonstrate one situation with two volunteers if you wish.
Ask your learners to role-play each situation.
As they finish one situation, take the cards back and give them
If you are using these cards as practice, you will need to have
prepared your students with some common telephone
The Alphabet Pyramid
KEYSTAGES 2/3 S
The pyramid shows the letters of the alphabet in
The Alphabet Pyramid Cont…
KEYSTAGES 2/3 S
Draw the pyramid on the blackboard and erase some of the
Write the letters you have erased around the pyramid.
Ask the class to place them correctly in the pyramid.
Draw the pyramid with some of the letters wrongly placed.
Ask the class to identify them and place them correctly.
The “Pen” Game
Write a word on the board.
Then elicit a word beginning with each of the
Ask the children to take a piece of paper and
write words on the board for the children to
Then let the children work in pairs to see how
many of the word puzzles they can complete.
Check the answers with the whole class.
The Revision Box
The teacher uses a vocabulary box.
This box must mainly comprise of words on pieces
of paper (either verbs, adjectives, adverbs etc..) all
said by the learners themselves in previous lessons.
The box with all the words is circulated around the
Each learner is given a chance to pick a word from
which he / she will have to construct a short and
Each sentence said is written on the board just as
the speaker said it.
The Revision Box Cont …
After 12 to 20 sentences the sentences are
analysed to see if they are grammatically correct
with the emphasis placed mainly on the word from
the vocabulary box.
Correction of the sentences can then be done and
learners, again depending on time available,
prompted to produce the correct sentences with
the same word from the box.
The Secret Code Game
Give out the sweets or lollipops wrapped with the slips
This paper will have a hidden message which will have
to be worked out by students if they want to eat
their sweets or lollipops.
Tell students that each letter used represents the
previous letter in the alphabet ( Note: Z comes
The Secret Code Game Cont…
Once students understand, allow them two minutes to
work out their messages individually.
The first one to find out the hidden message should
read it out to the rest of the class and carry out the
instructions on it.
Continue around the class until everyone has
deciphered their messages. Give help as needed.
The Tongue Twister Game
To practice the pronunciation of difficult sounds.
The teacher writes some English tongue twisters on the
board or on pieces of paper to distribute to students.
The teacher asks them to read the tongue twisters
Then three times in a row.
Here are some examples:
- She sells sea shells on the sea shore
- A proper copper coffee pot
Through the Peephole
ALL KEYSTAGES S
The teacher chooses a picture and does not let children see it.
The teacher places five sheets of paper with holes of
different sizes over the picture (the sheet with the largest
hole on the bottom and the smallest on the top).
Children have to guess which picture is only by looking at a
small section. They have to ask “Is it….?” and the teacher
answers:” No, it is not” or “Yes, it is!”.
If anybody does not guess the picture, the teacher removes
the top sheet and the hole is bigger now.
KEYSTAGE 2/3 S
A player chooses a secret word.
The player must then create a sentence which
uses the word correctly.
In place of the chosen word, however, the
player says, "thwibbledy-thwap."
For example, if the student chose the word
"car," he or she would then say the following: "I
rode to school today in my father's thwibbledythwap."
KEYSTAGE 2/3 S
Any student who believes that he or she knows what
word "thwibbledy-thwap" represents should raise
his or her hand.
If three students fail to guess the word, the player
creates another sentence using the same word.
("Our new thwibbledy-thwap has four doors.")
Up to three more students may guess, and so on,
until someone guesses the correct word.
The student who guesses correctly chooses the
Draw three time zones on your line – Past /
Now / Future.
Students take turns to come out.
Read out a sentence, e.g. ‘He saw his friend
The student has to position himself on the
line /in the zone he thinks appropriate.
This is a great kinaesthetic way to practise
tenses and expressions of time
PURPOSE: Think-Pair-Share is a cooperative learning strategy that can promote and
higher level thinking. The teacher asks students to think about a specific topic,
pair with another student to discuss their own thinking, and then share their ideas
with the group.
• Decide on how to organize students into pairs.
• Pose a discussion topic or pose a question.
• Give students at least 10 seconds to think on their own. (“think time”).
• Ask students to pair with a partner and share their thinking.
• Call on a few students to share their ideas with the rest of the class.
True or false ?- Variation
Instead of a straightforward T or F,
put a mistake, or a piece of false information in
each sentence which the students must find
Or produce a report on something the class has
studied, with mistakes in it.
Very adaptable and can be used at every level.
ALL KEYSTAGES S
To practice rhythm, stress and intonation.
Choose a song that has lots of rhyming words in it
at the ends of its lines.
Take the rhyming words out of the song and put
them on a worksheet or on the board.
Then talk about how songs often have rhyming
words at the ends of lines.
The students listen and attempt to put the words
back into the song.
This can be attempted before they listen with
more advance learners.
Vary your Close Exercises
Cloze exercises are a great way of testing
comprehension – but also, spelling.
Try leaving all the vowels and ‘y’ out.
Students do enjoy this exercise.
KEYSTAGES 2/3 S
Prepare a colourful piece of paper which can
be used as a background for the wall
Sew 26 pockets on it (or use glue/sticky tape)
and label each pocket with a letter of the
Ask the children to prepare sets of letter
cards by writing the 26 letters on some small
pieces of paper.
They put their letters into the pockets.
Wall Dictionary Cont…
KEYSTAGES 2/3 S
We can use this wall dictionary at any time
to practise spelling.
For example, divide the class into three or
They listen to words and then choose
letters from the pockets to spell the words
Who Am I?
Paste pictures of popular characters on 4 x 6
or larger cardstock.
Call one student away from group.
Show the student a card. (Make sure that the
student recognizes the individual on the card.)
The student then stands in front of the class
and his or her classmates ask questions in
order to guess who the student is.
Who Am I? Cont…
Students may ask questions like . . . Are you
male or female? Are you a child or an adult?
How old are you?
When a student correctly guesses who the
student is, he or she becomes the next
Variations: Ask each student to bring a
picture of him or herself to class.
Make cards for each class using photographs
of students in that class.
Who’s Got the Rubber?
To practice intonation
Give out a paper sheet for each student (In one of
the sheets it is written “you’ve got the rubber” in the
rest of sheets other classroom objects “you’ve got
the pencil-case”, “…. the ruler”).
Explain that someone has stolen your rubber and they
are going to help him to find it.
Who’s Got the Rubber? Cont…
Ask (exaggerating intonation) one of the pupils
“Have you got the rubber?”
and he answers offended and with indignation:
“Meeeeee? I haven’t got the rubber. I’ve got
the ruler” (or whatever object).
Then you ask another classmate “Anna, have
you got the rubber?”
and she answers “Meeeee? I haven’t got….”
And so on this dialogue pattern is repeated till
the pupil who’s got the rubber is asked for it.
To practice vowel sounds.
Divide the students into groups.
For each sound under study, provide a cut-out of a large
Write or paint the sound/letter on the trunk of the
Ask the students to “hang” words on slips of paper
containing the sound from the branches of the tree.
Display the accumulated trees on the classroom wall as
the term progresses.
Use them for periodic pronunciation review.
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