ESL Classroom Games for Young Learners

How to have an alphabet board game with LEEP Racemats
This alphabet board game is a great way to make learning to read phonetically a little more fun for teachers[...]
How To Use LEEP Placemats To Teach Children To Read
When our students are just beginning to learn how to read we like to introduce the letters of the alphabet[...]
Listen and Draw is a great comprehension check for any lesson about prepositions.
This Game is one of the first games I ever used in class.  It builds on one of our first[...]
How to teach body related vocabulary with the “Duck Game”.
This classroom game comes to us from Nicole P. Nicole is a very active member of the Easy ESL Games[...]
How To Use Pictionary In Your EFL Classroom
This is a really fun game that sure to be a hit. You might know it as Pictionary, or Listen[...]
3 Card Hold’em is an easy vocabulary review you can use directly after teaching new words.
3 Card Hold'em is a fun and easy way to get your class using newly learned vocabulary and target language[...]
How to use the song Red Ball to teach colours in your EFL classroom!
This classroom game works great as a warm up activity or a vocabulary review.  It's adaptable,  it gets your students[...]
2-1-0 is an easy way to teach a lot of vocabulary items very quickly.
The 2-1-0 Method for teaching new vocabulary is in my experience the easiest and fastest way for students to learn[...]
How to use Alien Tag to practice spelling in your EFL classroom.
This classroom game comes from Nelis.  Nelis is an English teacher born and raised in South Africa that has been living[...]
How to teach food related vocabulary using the ESL game Fruit Salad.
This Super Simple Game Submission come from Gosia.   It’s called Fruit Salad.Materials Required:​A minimum of 6 students.A minimum of[...]
How to Play Marco Polo in Your EFL Classroom.
This Super Simple game submission comes from David Dial an English teacher from Vallejo CA. David has been living and[...]
How to Play The Vocabulary Swat Game
This Super Simple Game Submission comes to us from Christine M.  It’s a classroom classic that kids can’t get enough[...]
How to Play the Monster Game in your EFL Classroom.
This Super Simple Game submission comes from Olga. Olga is originally from Spain but has travelled through Europe and is[...]
How to use Head, Shoulders, Knees & JUMP in your ESL classroom.
When I first arrived in Japan an experienced ESL / EFL teacher told me that if I could teach children[...]
How to teach basic prepositions with Preposition Cards by Easy ESL Games
We created these Preposition Cards as a fun and exciting way to let students learn and reinforce 7 basic prepositions[...]
How to teach new vocabulary with a Rock Scissor Paper Race A.K.A. Janken Race.
Finding new and interesting ways to teach new vocabulary can be one of the more difficult tasks a new language[...]
Go Fish is an excellent game that lets your ESL students start using REAL English almost immediately.
ESL Games are the most effective in kids classes when they are easy to play and don't rely on a[...]
What Time Is It Mr. Wolf – A great ESL game for teaching TIME with large and/or outdoor classes.
ESL games are great when they get your whole class moving and having fun.  What time is it Mr. Wolf[...]
Get your ESL students moving and using ANY Language Target with a game of Freeze Tag!
Freeze tag is a classic children's game that can easily be adapted into a great Outdoor ESL Game.  It works best[...]
Phonic Bingo helps your youngest ESL students learn how to read!
This ESL Game is just like regular bingo but we’ve added some language learning.  More specifically we’re going to combine[...]
Blindfolded Maze is a great ESL Game for practicing Directional Vocabulary (giving directions).
This ESL game is a guaranteed good time no matter if your English language learners are children or adults.   To[...]
ESL Volleyball is a great rainy day game that your students will beg to play time and time again.
ESL Games aren't always equal parts of language acquisition and fun.  Volleyball is very much tilted towards fun.  I recommend[...]
ESL Basketball is an easy classroom game your students are sure to love.
ESL Basketball is a game your students will absolutely love.  It's a great way to add excitement to almost any[...]
Social Butterflies is a great ESL game to get your class talking to multiple people quickly.
ESL games that don't rely on teacher's talking time are one of the most effective ways to instil a sense[...]
Classroom Language Cards are an amazing resource that will get your youngest learners communicating quickly.
By combining a word or phrase with an action, students will internalize and understand the word or phrase much easier than if they tried to learn the word through root memorization.
An ESL/EFL spin on the classic game Hot Potato.
Times Up is an ESL Introduction Game that's amazing simple and effective.  It's called Times Up!  It's basically a spin on[...]
How to Set Up an ESL Game in 6 simple steps. This is a can’t miss for any new ESL teacher.
ESL games are supposed to be easy and fun.  However many new language teachers don't know how to set up an[...]
Hammers is a great Comprehension Check you can use in low level ESL classes and demo lessons.
Hammers is a great comprehension check for beginner ESL students and it’s just about the easiest game around. Often times[...]
ESL Game #75 – Asking Questions
In my experiences teaching English in Japan, Asking Questions has always been the hardest thing to get my young ESL learners to do.
ESL Game #74 – Island Hopping
Island Hopping is an easily adaptable ESL game that can work with almost any target language.  All you need is[...]
ESL Game # 69 – An easy way to teach prepositions
Small ESL classes and man-2-man language lessons can often prove to be extremely difficult to teach.  Children are naturally intimidated[...]
ESL Game #064 – Telling the Time Treasure Hunt
 One of challenging lesson for ESL students is telling the time from analog clock. Although, understand the concept, they seem[...]
Simple Questions is a great ESL game that focuses on questioning.
ESL Games don't always have to be complicated.  Simple Questions is an easy warm up activity that gets your younger[...]
He Said / She Said is a great ESL game for teaching Reported Speech.
ESL Games are usually the most effective when they are a similar to a game your students already play for[...]
ESL Game #058 – It’s Magic
ESL Games are great for creating a need for your student's to speak.  Today's ESL magic trick will create a[...]
ESL game #056 – Scattergories
If you've been teaching ESL / EFL for any substantial period of time you've already forgotten more ESL games then[...]
ESL Game #053 – Snakes & Ladders
Like many of the ESL Games on this site ESL Game #053 - Snakes & Ladders is simply a personal[...]
Shark Race is a simple way to check your student’s phonetic reading ability.
ESL Games can be difficult to use when you are trying to gauge the ability of new students. A Shark[...]
ESL Game #050 – Language Sprint
I love high intensity ESL Games.  They are fun, fast and frenetic.  A Language Sprint is an excellent way to[...]
A Parachute is a must for every kids ESL classroom!
Parachutes are a ton of fun in any ESL lesson. They can be amazing tools for teaching a variety of[...]
ESL Game #044 – There is ahhhhh?
As a new teacher one of the hardest concepts to explain to my young learner ESL / EFL students was[...]
ESL Game #043 – Slow Draw
Slow draw is a staple in most ESL / EFL teacher's resource folder.  It's fun, engaging and best of all[...]
ESL Game #043 – Little Hints
Little Hints is an ESL guessing game that helps you introduce, use and review vocabulary while using soft correction to[...]
ESL Game #042 – Hide and Find (Direction Game)
ESL Games that make your students not only have to use their English but want to use their English aren't[...]
ESL Game #039 – The Hungry Panda
This ESL game is a fun way to get your class working together to sound words out phonetically and then[...]
ESL Game #038 – The Perfect Match
ESL Games that work in large classes are an essential asset for any language teacher.  Even if you usually teach[...]
ESL Game # 036 – Hieroglyphics
This ESL Game is an alternative to Charades.  Charades is of course a classic ESL / EFL game that requires[...]
ESL GAME #031 – “FAN”tastic
The fan game a.k.a. "FAN"tastic is awesome!  My ESL classes love it and yours will too.  All you need is a whiteboard,[...]
Watermelon is a great ESL game that emphasizes listening comprehension and new language production.
This is quite possibly the easiest ESL game of all time. A childhood favorite in almost every language that goes[...]
ESL Game #021 – The Singing Potato
The singing potato is guaranteed fun for any ESL / EFL class.  No questions asked!  It has a randomized timer[...]
The BOMB is a great tool for your ESL introduction lessons.
One of my favorite ESL / EFL resources to use is the BOMB!  It's great for adding a little bit[...]
ESL Game #019 – Othello
Othello is a great game that makes ESL learning fun.  In my experience any game you can use that your[...]
ESL Game #016 – Why AGO a.k.a. WAGO
In all honesty the game of AGO is probably one of the most useful ESL games available.    However, in-time, any[...]
ESL Game #014 – Green AGO (Intermediate Version)
As an ESL teacher you are continuously looking for ways to minimize your talking time while increasing your student's.  The[...]
ESL Game #013 – Blue AGO (Easy Version)
As an ESL teacher you are continuously looking for ways to minimize your talking time while increasing your student's.  The[...]
Easy ESL Games Baby Resource #001 – Super Simple Songs
As an ESL teacher one of the biggest challenges I faced as a new teacher was baby classes.  I couldn't[...]
ESL Game #012 – Charades
Charades is a Classic ESL / EFL game.  It's a fun and easy way to teach and reinforce vocabulary.  Playing[...]
This Chant is an easy way to teach basic prepositions in any ESL classroom.
ESL chants are a great way to teach vocabulary in your ESL / EFL classroom.  This chant is a really[...]
ESL Game #007 – What’s Missing?
What's Missing? is a fun and easy ESL game that helps to teach and reinforce new vocabulary in your ESL[...]
ESL GAME #004 – Feely Bag – What’s missing?
Using a feely bag is a great way to get your classes imaginations working. Materials: All you need is a[...]
A Relay Race is a great way to use teamwork to help motivate even your shyest students to speak.
A Relay Race is a fun game that gets your whole ESL / EFL class using new vocabulary and language[...]
ESL Game #032 – Battleship
Classroom games are often based games we all played as kids and then adapted to ESL / EFL learning by adding a language[...]
ESL Game #73 – The Alligator’s Christmas Bingo
It seems like season after season, year after year, Bingo is just one of those games that stays in my[...]