Classroom games

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Basic Information

Games are a great way to build language, literacy, and counting skills in students. They can also help improve coordination skills, reinforce critical thinking and problem-solving skills, and  teach children about winning and losing, taking turns, and  team work. Here are some classroom games you can use to help re-energize your students.

(All day)

Games are a great way to build language, literacy, and counting skills in students. They can also help improve motor coordination skills, reinforce critical thinking and problem-solving skills, and  teach children about winning and losing, taking turns, and  team work. Here are some classroom games you can use to help re-energize your students.

Activity Steps: 

Dumb Charades


  • Divide the class into two teams.
  • Ask Team One to identify a book which Team Two has to guess.
  • When team two comes in, one person is from team two is told the name of the book.
  • This person has to now act out the word for his/her teammates to guess.
  • Then Team Two chooses a book and Team One guesses.

The game can be used to familiarize students with the names of books (indirectly encouraging the reading habit)  and enhance imagination.



  • Ask the students to stand in a circle.
  • Choose a number. Say the number is 5
  • Each student speaks out a number and when it comes to the fifth student, he says “Laddoo” instead of 5.
  • The word “Laddo” is repeated for all multiples of 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30 for example.
  • The person who is not alert and says the number instead of “Laddoo” is out. 
  • Any other number can be used for more rounds of the game

This is a game which tests alertness, though it also familiarizes students with the multiples of a number.

Simon says

  • Ask one child to play Simon. Ask the others to stand facing him.
  • Simon instructs the others to perform an action. For example he can say,
  • “Simon clap your hands” or “Simon says tap your left foot”.
  • The other players are expected to follow. 
  • If Simon just gives an instruction without starting with “Simon says” others are not expected to follow.

This is a game which tests attention. The strategy is to play it so fast that the players fail to notice when Simon gives an instruction starting with “Simon says” and when he gives an instruction without it. One can also choose to contextualize the game by calling it “Bittu says” for example.



  • Ask the children to draw a 3 by 3 grid, and write numbers or words in it.
  • Call out the numbers or words one by one, and the children cross off the ones that are on their board.
  • The first person to cross off all the numbers or words shouts “Bingo!” and wins the game.

Words bingo: Words Bingo can be used for almost any subject. You can use the names of shapes, colours, countries for example. In playing words bingo, you should be careful to set limits on the words, using a clearly-defined set of words.

Numbers bingo:

Numbers bingo is used for maths. The game can be simple, where you choose 9 numbers between1-20.  You call out these numbers at random). It can also be an advanced game used for practising calculations. In that case you choose 9 numbers between1-20, which you give sums for – addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, fractions, percentages, rounding up or down.

The game familiarizes students with new words and numbers and helps in the practice of mathematical skills.


  • Choose one student to identify the name of a book. 
  • This person writes dashes, indicating the number of letters in a word.
  • The other students guess by saying one letter at a time.
  • Every time they guess a letter right the writer writes it in the appropriate space (more than once, if the word has more than one of the same letter).
  • Every time they get it wrong, he draws another part of a picture of a man being hanged.
  • The students win when they complete (or guess) the word; they lose if the picture is completed and the man hanged.

This is another game that familiarizes students with books, encourages reading, enhances imagination and tests spelling.

Word Worms

  • Write a list of words in the shape of a worm with no boundaries between each word.
  • It might look something like this:  eyesearsnosetonguelipschinforehead
  • Ask the students to find the words within a time limit. They could work in pairs or individually.
  • Once the majority have found all the words, give them a few minutes to practice saying them, while you monitor and correct any pronunciation errors.

This is a fun way to revise vocabulary.


Spotting the Mistake

  • Tell a story or read an article or talk to the students about something, but warn them in advance that you’re going to make mistakes, and see if they’re quick enough to spot them.
  • The mistake could be a grammatical error, a historical error, a geographical error a logical error.
  • The activity gets children to pay more attention.  

The game tests alertness along with concepts in all subjects.


Who am I?

  • Ask one student to represent a famous person. (It could be a historical character, a scientist, an author, a character from a book, etc.)
  • The student gives three clues about himself and the other students guess who it is.

The game familiarizes students with famous personalities through the ages and their contribution.


Drawing game

  • Divide the class into pairs, sitting back to back.
  • One person is given a simple drawing. The other person has a blank piece of paper and a pencil.
  • The person with the drawing describes it in detail so that the other person can reproduce the drawing on the sheet of paper.
  • The role is reversed after sometime.

The activity tests the capacity of one person to describe precisely and the other person, to follow instructions.

Who is the leader?

  • Ask the participants to sit in a circle.
  • One person volunteers to leave the room.
  • The rest of the group chooses a leader.
  • The leader performs a series of actions, such as clapping, tapping a foot etc.  The whole group copies that.
  • The volunteer comes back into the room, stands in the middle and tries to guess who the leader is.
  • The group protects the leader by not looking at him/her.
  • The leader changes the actions at regular intervals, without getting caught.
  • When the volunteer spots the leader, they join the circle, and the person who was the leader leaves the room to allow the group to choose a new leader.

The game tests observation and alertness.

20 questions

  • Ask a student to think of an object in the classroom.
  • The others are allowed 20 questions to get the answer.
  • All answers will be in either “yes” or “no”.

The activity involves classification and elimination of a certain class of things and therefore encourages good questions that will help them in narrowing down to a particular object with a minimum set of questions.  For example, the students may ask whether the object is living or non-living, whether it is made of wood, etc.  



Malar's picture

Learning by doing and learning by  playing are the best ways to learn. Thanks for the resource given to us.

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