7 Best Games for Your Next Vocabulary Class

7 Best Games for Your Next Vocabulary Class

Try These 7 Best Games for Your Next Vocabulary Class

  1. 1


    Write vocabulary words on individual index cards. Break your class into two teams, and have one individual from each team act out the same word. The team to correctly guess the word first scores a point.

  2. 2


    Write vocabulary words on individual index cards or use your set from charades. Break your class into two teams, and one individual from each team draws a picture on the board. Drawers cannot use letters numbers or symbols in their drawings. The first team to guess the word correctly scores a point.

  3. 3


    Create your own memory game using vocabulary words. Write each word on individual index cards. For each existing card, make a matching card with the definition, a synonym or an antonym. Students shuffle the cards and arrange them all face down on a table. Students take turns flipping over two cards. If the cards make a set, the student keeps the cards and takes an additional turn. The person with the most cards at the end of the game wins.

  4. 4

    Modified Catch Phrase

    Write each vocabulary word on an individual index card. Students sit in a circle with a timer set for a random amount of time (3-8 minutes works well). Shuffle the cards and give the deck to the first person in the circle. That person draws a card and tries to get his classmates to guess the word by giving verbal clues. He cannot say the word or any part of the word. When someone guesses the word, he passes the stack to the next person who takes a turn with another word. The person holding the stack of cards when the timer goes off loses.

  5. 5


    Choose ten categories with your students or before class starts (e.g. types of pets, city names, sports, items in a kitchen, etc.). Use an alphabet die to determine the letter for each round of play. Set a timer for three minutes, and students must think of one word for each category that begins with that round’s letter. Students score one point per word, and the person with the most points at the end of three rounds is the winner.

  6. 6

    The Dictionary Game

    Choose an unusual word from the dictionary and spell it for your students. Each person creates a fictional definition for the word and writes it on an index card. You write the actual definition on another index card. Collect and shuffle the cards, and then read all the definitions. Students must try to guess which definition is the real one.

  7. 7

    A-Z Pictures

    Using a picture with many elements (I-Spy books work great), students attempt to find an object in the picture that begins with each of the letters A through Z. After about five minutes, students compare answers. The person with the most correct answers wins the round.


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