In the category-based Name Ten ESL game, students have to try and think of words that won’t be repeated by other teams.
Divide the class into teams of two, three or four students. There should be minimum of three teams and a maximum of five or six (if there are more students, make larger teams).
Each team will need a piece of paper, on which they should write a team name. Write the team names as the titles of columns on the board.
- Give the students a vocabulary category.
- The teams have one minute to write down any ten items in that category (any others after the first ten will not be counted). However, they only receive a point for unique items, those which no other team has written, so more obscure vocabulary is likely to earn a point.
- When the time is up, the teams swap papers so another team can check their answers. The teams take turns reading out the answers they have, as you write them on the board. After the first team, don’t write any duplicate answers, and cross out the first instance of that answer.
- When you have done this for all teams, total up the points for the round by looking at the remaining answers.
- Swap the papers back and repeat the process for future rounds. The team with the most points at the end of the game wins.
The Name Ten ESL game game is a great warmer for any level from high beginner to advanced. Select categories according to the vocabulary you wish to practise and the level of your students. Categories that can work well for most students include food, animals, clothes, sports, jobs, household objects, and things you can currently see in the classroom. With more advanced students, make the categories more specific, such as fruit/vegetables or extreme sports.
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