The best part about being an English teacher is creating and implementing ESL games to use in the classroom. That’s why I’m going to post a new Kick Ass ESL Game every week as a resource for other English teachers abroad. I’m so confident your students will love these games that I’m giving you my Kick Ass ESL Seal of Approval.
WARNING: This ESL game is so kick ass that your students might have too much fun screaming and shouting English phrases at each other. That’s to be expected. Keep them under control when this occurs. [Student level: intermediate to advanced]
- Write a sentence at the top of the whiteboard/blackboard with the words jumbled.
- Write something like, “cat cute that so is” (That cat is so cute).
- Solve this example sentence yourself, eliciting help from your students to arrange the words properly.
- Once they understand the concept, split the class into 2 teams.
- Call on one student from each team to compete next. I like to choose the texting, chatting kids in the back of class first.
- Once a student from each team is in position to write on their side of the board, it’s time to play.
- Write a new jumbled sentence at the top of the board.
- While the two students race to write the sentence correctly, encourage the class to help their teammates.
- The first team that writes the sentence correctly gets a point. The team with the most points at the end of class wins.
Easy: 1 point — “buffalo like smell you a” (You smell like a buffalo).
Medium: 2 points — “forever and me friends be you will” (You and me will be friends forever).
Hard: 3 points — “I’ve heard that’s thing ever funniest the” (That’s the funniest thing I’ve ever heard).
Keep the pace of this game fast. Have at least 15 jumbled sentences prepared so the momentum of the game doesn’t slow. If there’s too long of a lull in-between rounds, the students will get bored.
This ESL game can be adapted to all levels of English proficiency. For younger learners, use very simple phrases and sentences, sticking with material they’ve already learned. For advanced students, make the sentences difficult, or even introduce them to totally new words and phrases.
I hope this Kick Ass ESL Game works for your students as well as it did for in my classes!