When teaching English TEFL it is always beneficial to have some ESL games handy to reward the students when they behave well and work hard. In this article I will describe my three favourite ESL games.
ESL games make learning and teaching fun. It is necessary for students to ‘knuckle down’ to do some hard work but it is also important that this is balanced with some fun learning activities. ESL games are a great way to lighten the lesson and increase the students enjoyment of learning a new language.
My three favourite games are as follows:
1) Parachute man: This ESL game is played using teams so divide your class up into at least 2 teams. For each team draw a man with a parachute on the board, each parachute should have 5 lines attaching the man. Below each man draw a dangerous animal, such as a shark. Then choose a word from their ESL vocabulary and draw a dash for each letter. The ESL students have to guess a letter that belongs to the word. If they guess a correct letter it is the next teams turn. If they guess an incorrect letter then erase a line connecting their man to his parachute. The team that is the first to have all their lines erased is the loser and falls to the dangerous animal below. The team that guesses the word first is the winner.
2) 3 In A Row: This ESL game is similar to the popular X/O game. The difference is that we use words from the students ESL vocabulary instead of the letters x and o. First draw a grid on the board with nine boxes. Put a word from their vocab into each box. The teams take turns to choose a word and make a sentence. If they can make a sentence they win that box. The first team to win three boxes in row is the winner.
3) Scrambled: This ESL game involves choosing words from their ESL vocabulary and mixing up the letters. The ESL students then have to try and put the letters into the correct order and name the scrambled word. The first team to unscramble a word wins the word and the team with the most words is the winner.