King’s Cup ESL Board Game

Have you ever played King’s Cup at a party with your friends? The classic drinking game can also be adapted for language learning in the classroom. It is appropriate for all ages and a broad range of language levels. Student Level: Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] King’s Cup ESL Game Preparation: To prepare the game, make sure that you have a print out of the game rules to refer to. Use a digital version on your phone, tablet, or computer if you have one. You will also need a full deck of cards. Plus, beforehand, you may want to adapt the game tasks depending on your students’ skill levels. King’s Cup ESL Game Guidelines: To begin, explain the game rules to your students. On the board, write…
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Drawing Dictation ESL Listening Activity

Have you ever tried doing a drawing dictation in the classroom? Drawing dictations are fun for all ages and are an excellent method for improving active listening skills. Student Level: Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Drawing Dictation ESL Activity Preparation: Not much is required to prepare for this activity. If you want, print out a collection of pictures for your students before class begins. As an easy alternative option, the students can use their smartphones or tablets for the exercise. Also, make sure that the students have some paper to draw on. Drawing Dictation ESL Activity Guidelines: To start the lesson, model the task. Pick a student volunteer from the class and hand them a random picture. Tell the class that you have no idea what the…
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Taboo ESL Board Game

Playing the classic board game of Taboo is a fun way to engage your students in class. It is a great game for improving listening and speaking skills. It is appropriate for all ages and levels. Student Level: Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Taboo ESL Game Preparation: Before class begins, you should prepare a list of words and about 3 to 5 synonyms (or related vocabulary) for each word. There are some prepared lists online if you want to download them. For example, there is a good list of Taboo words on the ESL Games website. Plus, you may want to try online versions of Taboo on the following sites: Playtaboo.com, Taboogame.net, and Playtaboogame.com. Alternatively, customize your own taboo lists using the vocabulary from your class textbook.…
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Storytelling ESL Speaking Activity

This storytelling ESL activity lets students practice new vocabulary by creating stories in small groups. Students can use vocabulary from their course book to improve their speaking skills while producing a unique story of their own. The activity is appropriate for all ages and levels. Student Level: Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Storytelling ESL Activity Preparation: Create a list of vocabulary from your course textbook. Make sure to include a variety of nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs. You may also want to print and cut out the words individually on paper. Alternatively, you could use an app or website to generate the words if your classroom has a smartboard or a large screen. Storytelling ESL Activity Guidelines: To begin, model the activity. Write five nouns on the…
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The Cube Test ESL Writing Activity

The Cube Test ESL Activity can help students improve their writing skills and have fun evaluating their classmates’ personalities. The original Cube Personality Test was developed by Tadahiko Nagao and Isamu Saito who co-wrote the popular Kokology book series. The test analyzes people’s personalities by using guided storytelling. However, you can also use it in your language class. Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced The Cube Test ESL Activity Preparation: Before starting the activity, prepare some paper for your students. Get some lined paper for writing and some blank paper for students to draw on. You may also want to print out a copy of the activity guidelines so it is easier to lead your students through the personality test. The Cube Test ESL Activity Guidelines: First,…
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Find Someone Who ESL Speaking Activity

The Find Someone Who ESL Activity is a great way to get your students up and out of their seats. By filling out a chart of questions, students try to find other classmates who have done different actions and activities. It works especially well as an ice-breaker. Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Find Someone Who ESL Activity Preparation: Prepare a sheet of questions for the students. The document should include a list of activities that people do their lives. At the top of the document, write “Find someone who…”. Below, write a series of activities and actions that the students will have to check off when they do the discussion task. For instance, the document could look something like this: Find someone who... 1. watched a movie…
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Two Truths and a Lie ESL Speaking Activity

The Two Truths and a Lie ESL Activity is a great icebreaker for most levels. The aim of the activity is for the students to guess what you are lying about. It is preferable if the students don’t know much about you. This will make it more challenging for them to guess which one of your personal statements is a lie. Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Two Truths and a Lie ESL Activity Preparation: All that you need for the Two Truths and a Lie ESL activity is your board and marker. Optionally, you could provide the students with some paper for them to write on. This speaking activity can be extended as a writing activity as well. However, it depends on how much time you…
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Cup Pong ESL Speaking Activity

Playing the Cup Pong can be more than just a fun drinking game to play with your friends. You can adapt the game, so it can be used to improve your students speaking skills and allows them to have some fun while learning English as well. The Cup Pong ESL Activity can be used with all levels and age groups. Student Level: Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Cup Pong ESL Activity Preparation: For the game, you will need some ping pong balls and some plastic (or paper) cups. You may want to find some bigger cups to make sure it isn’t too difficult for the students to get the ball in. However, using a bunch of those smaller standard office paper cups can be fun for students…
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Inside The Actors Studio ESL Listening Activity

The Inside the Actors Studio ESL activity works particularly well as an ice-breaker during the first day of class. Moreover, it can still be used at any time throughout the school term. Note, this listening activity uses James Lipton’s 10 questions from his show Inside the Actors Studio. Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Inside the Actors Studio ESL Activity Preparation: First, to prepare for this activity, you should find one of your favorite episodes of James Lipton’s Inside the Actors Studio. Over the past several years he has interviewed some of Hollywood’s most critically acclaimed actors and actresses. What you will be using for this activity are the series of questions that he asks everyone at the end of each show. Ideally, try to find an…
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Chopstick Topics ESL Speaking Activity

The Chopstick Topics ESL Activity is useful for getting your class involved in various quick discussion topics. All you need is a bunch of cheap wooden chopsticks or some other type of similar material to write on with a permanent marker or pen. Popsicle sticks would work just as well if you can’t find chopsticks anywhere. Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Adults [printfriendly] Chopstick Topics ESL Activity Preparation: Get a bunch of cheap wooden chopsticks to write on. Use as many as you want depending on the class size. Usually, about ten sticks will do. On every side of the chopsticks, write a general topic that would be engaging for group discussion. Themes like “movies,” “music,” “travel destinations,” or “favorite restaurants” are popular with almost any class level or…
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4 Corners ESL Speaking Activity

This is a quick and easy activity to get your students out of their seats if they have been sitting at their desks all day. It can help provide a change of pace to the lesson and will get the students talking. To do the 4 Corners ESL Activity, all you need is some space in the classroom. Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Adults [printfriendly] 4 Corners ESL Activity Preparation: You don’t have to prepare much for this activity. You should have a board marker, a pen, a piece of paper to write your words on, and plenty of room in the classroom for students. If your classroom is particularly small then you may want to try using other parts of the school if you have access. This activity…
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