Suffix Scattergories

In the Suffix Scattergories ESL game, students play a version of Scattergories in which they can only use words with a suffix.

Students for Suffix Scattergories ESL Game:2+Time for Suffix Scattergories ESL Game:10-20 mins
Resources for Suffix Scattergories ESL Game:

Divide the class into teams of two, three or four students. Two to four teams is ideal, but you can play with more.

Each team will need a piece of paper. They divide this paper into four columns, titled Verbs, Nouns, Adjectives, and Adverbs. Demonstrate on the board if necessary.

  1. Give the class a letter of the alphabet (e.g. C).
  2. The groups then have two minutes to write as many words as they can in each column, starting with that letter. However, in an extension to normal Scattergories, all of the words must end in a suffix.
  3. At the end of the time, the teams swap papers to check answers. Elicit correct words from the class and write them on the board. The team with the most correct words in each column wins a point (four points available each round).
  4. Swap the papers back, and repeat the process for future rounds with different letters. The team with the most points at the end of the game wins.

Note: If you want to make the game easier (or if you have only just introduced the idea of certain suffixes for different parts of speech), then you could display possible suffixes on the board while playing. Some possible suffixes for each column are:

Verbs: -en, -ify, -ate, -ise/-ize
Nouns: -ion, -ment, -ness, -ist, -er, -or, -ar
Adjectives: -ful, -less, -ive, -able, -ous, -al
Adverbs: -ly

Target Language

The Suffix Scattergories ESL game is designed for practising suffixes with intermediate or advanced students. Specifically, it illustrates the different suffixes that are used to create different parts of speech. When eliciting answers, demonstrate this to students by filling in any missing parts of speech for some of the words.

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