The fast-paced Anagrams ESL game is a fun way to familiarise your students with vocabulary.

Students for Anagrams ESL Game:2+Time for Anagrams ESL Game:5-15 mins
Resources for Anagrams ESL Game:
Projector; Internet or Prepared Anagrams

You will need to project the anagrams, one or a few at a time. The easiest way if you have an Internet connection is to use our online Anagrams game. Otherwise, prepare a computer slideshow, alternating words and their solutions on separate slides.

Students play this game in small teams (up to about four students works well). If possible, try and get your hands on some cheap squeaky toys/bells/horns/whistles for the teams. This makes it easier, and more fun, to see who answers first.

In class, students sit in their teams at different tables.

  1. Project an anagram or multiple anagrams.
  2. When a student/team thinks they know the word(s), they buzz in using their sound, putting their hand up, or shouting their team number. The student must give their answer(s) immediately.
  3. If all words are correct, they win a point for their team. However, if one or more is incorrect, or they fail to answer immediately, they lose a point.
  4. Repeat with other anagrams, and the team with the most points at the end of the game wins.

Tip: If teams are answering too quickly, and it’s hard to tell who is first, increase the number of anagrams you give at once.

Target Language

Play the Anagrams ESL game with random words for a fun warmer, or practise a set of specific vocabulary (our online game gives you this option). As such the game can be adapted to any level, beginner, intermediate or advanced. At the end of each round, review word definitions and check understanding if necessary.

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