Play the Toilet Paper ESL Game with your new classes. It is a funny and entertaining way to get your students to talk in class. Pick up a roll of toilet paper and bring it to your first class. A roll of paper towel will work just as well if you prefer to use that instead.
Student Level: Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced
Toilet Paper ESL Game Preparation:
Again, all that you need to prepare for this activity is a roll of toilet paper (or paper towels). Sticky notes are good too, but they are a bit more expensive. Generally, most students find toilet paper to be more amusing anyway and it’s much cheaper.
Using a felt marker or a board marker would be better than a regular pen.
Toilet Paper ESL Game Guidelines:
At the start of class, walk in with the toilet paper roll. Walk past each student and ask them to tear as many squares as they’d like from the roll. Usually, most students will take only a square or two. Others may get a bit crazy and roll out more than ten squares.
Tell them to tear them off and count their squares. They can stack them up in a pile.
Next, hand out the felt markers. If you don’t have enough, regular pens should work just as well. However, perhaps, crayons could be used if you are teaching younger learners.
Tear off a few more squares of paper for yourself and model the task. Take about three squares so they have a clear idea of what to do with theirs.
On each of your squares, write one unique word about yourself. It could be an adjective or noun. Customize it however you wish for your class level and context. For example, if you base the theme about nouns, then you could write the words “soccer”, “pizza”, and “Netflix”.
For each word, you could get the students to ask you a question relating to it. For instance, they could ask:
“What is your favorite soccer player?”
“When was the last time you ate pizza?”
“How often do you watch Netflix?”
Respond to their questions and try to encourage more discussion when you answer them.
For the next stage, tell the students to write their own words on their squares and perform the same tasks with their partner or group. Again, you may want to customize the difficulty or simplify the task if they are lower level students. The main aim of the exercise is to get them talking about themselves and interacting with each other as much as possible.
While they are talking in their pairs or groups, walk around and monitor their progress. Make note of any obvious errors and assist with difficulties.
After a few minutes of discussion, lead feedback. Ask a few students what they talked about with their partners. Make any necessary corrections to pronunciation and common grammar errors.
If there is time, hand out a few more squares and do another round of discussion.
Follow-Up ESL Activities:
To end the class, you could try another skill-based activity. To improve their listening, the Song Lyrics ESL Activity is a fun way to use music in the classroom. If you want to focus on writing, have a look at the Daily Diary ESL Activity.
More ESL Vocabulary Games for Kids and Adults:
- I Spy
- No Harm No Vowel
- To Be
- Body Parts
- Have You Ever
- Tic Tac Toe
- Word Whack
- Hot Seat
- Simon Says
- Pass the Marker
- Memory Race
- Board Race
- Word Chain
- Mystery Word
- 20 Questions
View the vocabulary games archive.