The Memory Circle Game: ESL Speaking for Kids

This is a game that I often use with smaller (less than 10 students) and younger students (elementary school or kindergarten) but I’ve also used it with university students in South Korea when learning new vocabulary words with good results.

To set it up, you need to make a rule about what kind of words or grammar that the students can use. Base it on whatever you are studying that day in class. For example: animals or past tense. You’ll need to adjust the rules and criteria according to the level and age of your students. You want to make it challenging, but not impossible so that everyone can have a change to play at least once in a round. I’ll use past tense for my example.

Everyone will stand up, in a circle, and I will start the game off, “I ate pizza last night.” The next student says, “She ate pizza last night, and I studied yesterday.” The next student, “She ate pizza last night, he studied yesterday and I watched TV.” And so on it goes, around the circle. If someone misses and gets it incorrect, they have to sit down and the game is over. I usually let it go until there are 2 or 3 people left and then I give them a prize of some sort and start over with the same rules, or a new set of criteria

For even more speaking games and activities for your English language learners, check out: Speaking Activities for ESL Students or Speaking Activities That Don’t Suck: Foolproof Ways to Force Your EFL Students to Produce Enormous Amounts of English .

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