Warm up games for elementary classes

You have 40 kids in a class, they can’t really move their desks. You are exhausted with simon says, snakes and ladders, word searches and ‘draw what the teacher says.’ Where do you go from here?

You can’t go wrong with a song.

This page:


has lots of links to FREE games and activities. Just scroll down to the section on children’s games. Try some of the ideas at ESL Kidstuff, Three Wise Monkeys or Genki English.

You can do operator, I think it’s called. Have one kid say a sentence in the kid’s ear ahead of him/her and pass it down. When its to the first person, have them write it on the board. The correct sentence gets points.

I guarantee that if you do this in Taiwan, there will be a lad called Jacky sitting half way along the line who goes ’
', either because he thinks it’s funny, or because he doesn’t understand you are playing a game.

TomHill, the correct answer is of course, ‘Exam prep classes’. Ask for the nurses.

How about these:

Ten Fingers - It’ll get them to start thinking about the different activities they’ve never done before. You could also offer a prize for the last student standing to spice it up a bit.

I Spy - The students can practice their vocabulary. You could even bring pictures or objects to class for a longer game or for more “spying” material.

My high school students like the following activity, and it should be doable with younger kids depending on the language ability.

Who am I?

First I teach them an array of questions they can ask. Are you male, female, an athlete, a politician, an actor, a singer, a cartoon, real or not real, dead or still alive, etc, etc.

Then I tell one student who he is, and the other students have to ask questions to find out. The student standing up can only answer yes or no. Are you real? Yes. Are you male? Yes. Are you alive? No. Are you a movie star? No. Are you a singer? Yes. Are you Micheal Jackson? Yes. Game over.


Singing O Canada?

Thanks very much for all the on-topic replies. I will use them/ pass them on to others.