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Top Tips for Playing Games During the ESL Class

Top Tips for Playing Games During the ESL Class | ITTT | TEFL Blog

Learning foreign languages is a very exciting and very responsible deal. A significant role in teaching foreign languages, in particular, English, belongs to games in the classroom. Games enhance students' mental activity, helps them consolidate material of the lesson, therefore it’s a very important activity. The developing value of the game we can find in itself, because where is a game - there is emotion. Where is emotion, there are attention improvisation and imagination.

This post was written by our TEFL certification graduate Ivan S. Please note that this blog post might not necessarily represent the beliefs or opinions of ITTT.

How to Implement Games?

There can be different usage of the game - it can be entertaining, training aims for deepening and improving the practical skills of the language, testing. Games can be organized as individual, pair and whole group. The strength of the game in its universality, in the ability easy, achieve significant results.

Young learners gladly play in such games as “ ball game”, “Find an object”, “guess the name”, “making a story by picture”, “making words by cubes” and so on. Middle grades (9-13 years old) prefer competition games. In the lessons, interest to the new material increases, because only deep knowledge allows the student to prove themselves and defeat the opponent. The spirit of competition is an excellent motive for learning the language. High-grade students like discussions on proposed topics, express their views about movies, news, articles, making crosswords.

kindergarten students

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Teacher’s Part

The role of the teacher is also very important. He or she should know how to make games interesting, how to lead students into the game. Very important to explain all rules before start to avoid misunderstanding and confusion in the process. If there are any mistakes while game, no need to correct them immediately. We need to wait until the game will be over and after analyzing them. Encouraging students are necessary to create the right relationships in the class.

The role of the game in English classes is huge. While the process of game students are enhancing vocabulary, grammar, pronunciation and develop their speech skills. Therefore game in the classroom is such a type of activity, where educational tasks are solved playfully. The game arouses the interest of the students and allows them to prove themselves interestingly. It also helps students to learn faster new words, improve their fluency and phonetics. There are plenty of games for English lessons, let's have a look for several popular ones:

boy playing

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Examples of Games

1) Word race - this is an excellent game for review and memorize words, which you have studied before. Such a grammar game allows making the lesson more interesting and funny, more than it, this game will be suitable for any age level students. Rules of the game: making two teams, after each team writes down one word from the previous lesson on the board, one word - one point, team which writes more is the winner.

2) Truth or lie - this game allows not only increase grammar level, but also learn more about students. Rules of the game: Students write down three sentences about themselves, one of them is true, another two are false. Students can ask each other questions about it. Finally, they should find out what is true and what is false.

3) Puzzles - an excellent game for group work. It was suitable for tenses and phrases review, practice in reading and so on. How to play: on paper write down 3-5 sentences in different colors, after cutting the paper to separate all sentences into the words, mix all pieces, class divides into two or three teams, each team starts to make sentences, who will finish faster - wins!

girl and teacher playing

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4) Hangman - This is a classic game that also can be considered as a warmer before the lesson. How to play: one student choose a word and draws the number of letters on the board using cells ( like in a crossword), other students offer letters, and if the letter present in the word, then it should be written down, if not - should draw a part of the hangman. If students guess the word before hangman will be completed, then they win.

5) "Draw the word" is a very interesting game. How to play: class divides into two teams after one student from each team choose a random word and start to draw it on the board, the team who guesses faster - wins!

6) Mimes - funny and interesting game, good for practice in speaking. How to play: one student chooses a word and starts to show it to the class, but he or she not allowed to talk, just show the word by his/her body. Another student should ask students only in English about this word and finally, guess the word.

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In conclusion, I want to say - all the games are forced to improve students' English levels. Usually, they are funny and interesting, they help to review previous material, strengthen knowledge, relief boredom and establish a good rapport with students and between them.

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