This is a fun ESL game that can be used as a warm-up activity to help build vocabulary in your ESL / EFL classroom.
ESL games are great when they let your students work as teams towards a common goal. An A–Z race is one of the easiest ways to get your students working together to brainstorm vocabulary that they already know.
The Details About A-Z Race
This game is great for any class size large or small.
This game works from ages 10 and up. Basically, players need the ability to read and write.
The only materials needed are a pencil, paper and a way to keep time. For large classes teachers should have a whiteboard and marker as well.
An A-Z race should last anywhere from 10 – 15 minutes.
How To Play A-Z Race
Divide your class into teams. Pairs or small groups work best.
Have each team write the alphabet from a – z in list format with one letter on each line of their papers.
Give your class a topic. In the video above I used food.
Brainstorm a few examples: A= apple, B= banana, etc.
Give the class a time limit. 2-5 minutes depending on age and ability.
As the class is thinking of vocabulary you as the teacher should be walking around helping out. Make sure each group gets a good number of words on their lists.
Once the timer goes off have your EFL students count how many words their groups could think of.
The team with the most words on their list is the winner.
After your ESL students tally the total number of words they came up with have your class work together to make a master list on the whiteboard.
Help your class out if there’s any letters that they miss.