Fun ESL Games for kids - Frequently Asked Questions

Question: 
I teach in a primary school and take all grades. Can I use the games at all ages and levels of ability?
Response: 

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All the ESL games are suitable for children aged 6 to 12 and some of the games can also be played with children aged 4 to 5. Some can be played with adults although this e-book was not written with adults in mind. Because of the adaptable nature of the games you can use the same game across the whole age range given above. The games themselves are mostly simple as far as learning the rules goes, and the level is varied depending on the amount of vocabulary and the complexity of grammar that you use in the game. In addition, many games have variants for older or younger children. The games are best for beginners to lower intermediates.  If you are only teaching preschool children aged three to five please check out this page: Games and Stories for Children aged 3 to 5

Question: 
Are these games only for ESL (English as a second language), or can they be used to teach reading and writing to young native speakers?
Response: 

The manual is designed with ESL in mind, however by substituting picture flash cards with word and letter flashcards you can play most of the games to teach reading and spelling. The bulk of the games would then be appropriate for children as soon as they are starting to learn the alphabet and to write up until about 2 nd grade (age 7). I have used the games to help young children who are struggling to keep up with their classmates in their own language for intensive practise and exposure to words and spelling and they work extremely effectively. 

Question: 
I have a whole classroom of kids. What is the ideal group size for the games?
Response: 

Most of the games can be adapted for anything from pair work to a whole class. However it is true that in order to get the greatest speaking opportunity out of the games for everyone in class, it is often recommended to divide the class into teams or smaller groups. This is often essential to avoid having every one in class sit around waiting an age for their turn to say something – and these games specifically offer a solution to that problem. Having said that I have created a number of games where all the class practise speaking in unison in the context of a fun game. These are not like other games I have seen on the web, where usually only a few students talk while the others just sit there. There are also at least 40 games which you can use with very large classes with not room to move about and where pupils stay at their desks.

Question: 
If I have to divide the class into groups, how can I stop them from just talking to each other and not playing ball?
Response: 

If your children are generally well behaved in your classes as they are now then you will manage them in the game situation. If your children are wild now then they will still be wild when you use the games! The games themselves will not make your class uncontrollable. You set the pace and the tone and remain very much at the helm at any given time (unless you choose from time to time to pass that role over to your most talented students). The games also have a category – Calm down, Wake up and Excitable and by varying the type of game you can control the overall mood of the class. I have also created special games for large classes where your pupils will all have a chance to speak - often in unison, or in teams, but in the meaningful context of a game rather than mindless repetition. You can also read some tips on managing a classroom full of kids and Classroom Games and Discipline in the introduction of the book.

Question: 
Can the ESL games be played in the classroom?
Response: 

The games have been designed with the classroom situation in mind and therefore the bulk of them can be played with the students desks in place as normal. However they can be adapted and if you can get into the playground or a gym every now and then, you will have more options open to you on how you play. Some of the games do require more space – and mostly you can achieve this by pushing the central desks to the side to leave an empty space in the middle. If moving desks is absolutely not your cup of tea then rest assured you can still play nearly all the games in your class as it is, full of furniture.

Question: 
What if I have a class of 60 children, all on benches and I don't want to use any materials?
Response: 

I have created at least 40 games with you in mind in a special edition of ESL games for kids in large classes. By having the class or teams speak in unison in the context of fun games maximises your pupils talking time. Everyone has a chance to say the words and target structures you are teaching, without sitting around waiting for their turn, and without repeating them back to you like a parrot. There are many other ideas in the e-book. For most games you can use either no materials, or pencil and paper and the class board or screen.

Question: 
What format is the book?
Response: 

It's a PDF.  You receive a download email immediately on ordering so you may say the book to your computer and make a back up.

If you are a paperback fan the book is also available on Amazon under "Shelley Ann Vernon".  It is in "foreign books" on some Amazons.

Question: 
What if I lose my e-book?
Response: 

If you lose your files, including your back up copy you may receive new access codes via a nominal admin fee.