Playing ESL Kindergarten games is the best way for kids to learn English. Students learn best when they are having fun, and at Games4esl we love creating fun and engaging educational games for kids. Below you’ll find a collection of our best fun ESL games for kindergarten students. All these activities are absolutely FREE and require little to no preparation. Let’s get started.
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ESL Games For Kindergarten Students
Game 1: Alphabet Games
One of the best ways for kindergarten students to learn the alphabet and the alphabet sounds is through playing games. The above activity is a fun alphabet game in which students must guess the word beginning with a particular letter of the alphabet. Students will see an outline of an object and then have five seconds to guess the word. This game is available for all letters of the alphabet from A to Z on our Phonics Alphabet Games page here.
Game 2: Hidden Picture Games
Kindergarten students love playing the ‘Hidden Picture Game’ and it’s a great way to review vocabulary they have learned in the lesson. The Hidden picture game is a fun PowerPoint game in which there is a picture hidden behind some colored shapes. The teacher should click on the shapes which makes them disappear and reveal the picture beneath. Then the students should try to guess what the picture is of. You can find a blank template to make your own, and over 35 ready to use games on various topics for kids on our Hidden Picture PowerPoint Games Page here.
Game 3: Touch Your Nose, Please (Simon Says Game)
Simon Says is a classic classroom game which young learners absolutely love. And the best part is it doesn’t require any preparation from the teacher. If you’re not familiar with Simon Says, the rules of the game are simple. The teacher should give instructions to the students and if the teacher says “Simon Says..” before the instruction, then the students should do what the teacher said. If the teacher does not say “Simon Says…’ first, then the students should not follow the instructions.
A great alternative to the classic version of Simon Says is to replace “Simon Says..” with “…please.” So, for example, if the teacher says “Touch your nose, please.” then the students should touch their nose. But if the teacher doesn’t say “please” then the students shouldn’t follow the instruction. This variation of Simon Says is super fun and a great way to teach manners to kindergarten students at the same time.
Game 4: Colors Guessing Game
Another common topic that ESL kindergarten students learn is colors. This fun colors guessing game is a fantastic way to review the names of colors in English. In this game, students will see a black and white picture and are then asked “What color is it?”. Students will then see two names of colors and must guess what color the object is. Students have a 50/50 chance of guessing correctly. Kindergarten students really love this game, especially when they guess correctly.
Game 5: What’s Missing?
To play this fun ESL kindergarten classroom game, all you need are some flashcards. Place 6-8 flashcards on the board and then say each word aloud and ask students to repeat after you. Then, tell students they have 10 seconds to try to memorize the words. After 10 seconds, tell students to close their eyes and then remove one of the flashcards from the board. Next, tell students to open their eyes and ask them ‘What’s missing?’. If a student guesses correctly, invite that student up to the front of the class to choose the next card.
Game 6: What Time Is It Mr. Wolf?
This next kindergarten game is best played outside or in a room with lots of space for the kids to run around. To play this game, choose one student to be the ‘wolf’. The ‘wolf’ must face away from the other students and close their eyes. The rest of the class should stand at the other end of the classroom / playground. Next, the students should shout out ‘What time is it Mr. Wolf?’ and the wolf should answer with a time between 1 and 12 o’clock. The students should then take steps forward corresponding to the time that the wolf answered. For example, if the wolf said “It’s three o’clock.”, then students should move forward 3 steps.
Next, the students should ask again “What time is it Mr. Wolf?” and then take steps forward after the wolf has answered. Once the students are close to the wolf, the wolf can answer ‘It’s dinner time!” and then turn around and chase the students. If the wolf catches one of the students, then that student becomes the new wolf and the game can start again.
Game 7: Weather Guessing Game
Another common topic that ESL kindergarten students learn is the weather. This fun game asks students ‘How’s the weather?’ and then shows them two possible answers. Students should choose one answer. They have a 50/50 chance of guessing correctly and if they guess the weather correctly, they get a point. Students can show their answer in many different ways. They can either raise their hand, move to one side of the classroom, or write down their answer.
Game 8: Let’s Dance Game
One thing kindergarten students absolutely love is dancing and being silly. This next activity is a great game to play to get students up and active and dancing around. To play, first visit our Let’s Dance PPT Game page and download a blank template or one of the ready to use games on many topics. Next, show the PPT in class. On the PPT there are 30 squares and each square has a word/number on it. Students will take turns reading the words/numbers in the squares. Each time, the student will have a choice. They can either read 1 word, 2 words, or a maximum of 3 words. The student who says the last word must dance. Alternatively, if you want the whole class to dance, the student who says the last word doesn’t have to dance, but the rest of the class do.
Game 9: The Phonics Train
This next game is great for kindergarten students to review phonics and letter sounds. To play this game, simply show the video in class. Students will see a train go by with phonics flashcards on. Then, students will see the train go by again, but this time with a card missing. Students must try to remember which word is missing. You can find the 6 Phonics Train games for initial sounds A to Z, plus CVC words on our Phonics Train Game Page.
Game 10: Find Something Blue
This next game for kindergarten students is super fun and great for reviewing colors in English. To begin, have students all sit down in the middle of the class. Tell the children that when you say ‘Go’ they should stand up and find something blue and bring it back to the middle of the class and sit down. For safety, be sure to tell students not to run or push other students. Once students have found something and sat back down, invite each student to share what they found. The teacher can ask ‘What is it?’ and students can answer “It’s a blue ball.”, “It’s a blue pencil.”, etc. Next, ask students to put their items back and then play again with a different color.
Game 11: Clothes Guessing Game
This fun guessing game is a great way to review the names of clothes in English with kindergarten students. In this game, there are 10 rounds and each round will show students a drawing of an outline of an item of clothing. The children should then try to guess what item of clothing it is before the time runs out. You can find more guessing game ideas on our guessing games for kids post.
Game 12: Matching Game
Test your kindergarten students’ memories with this fun matching game. There are 12 squares and behind each square is a picture. Students should try to find the matching pictures by choosing 2 squares at a time. Once students have chosen the numbers, the teacher can click on the number to show the picture. If the pictures are matching, the students get a point. If they are different, the teacher can click on the red circle to hide the image again. After a few turns, the students will start to remember where the pictures were and the game becomes really fun. Download a blank template and many ready to use games on different topics from our Memory Game Page.
Game 13: Four Corners Game
This simple classroom game for kindergarten students is incredibly fun and requires very little preparation. To play, first give a name to the four corners of the classroom. The names you give can be the words the children learned during the lesson. For example, if they are learning about numbers, you can name the corners 1,2,3, and 4, or if they are learning about animals, you can name the corners cat, dog, bird, and fish, etc. Next, write down one of the corner names and don’t show the students. Then, give students 5 seconds to move one of the corners of the classroom.
Once students have chosen their corner, show students the corner name you wrote down and the students in that corner are out. Then, play again and repeat until there is only 1 student left. That students is the winner.
Game 14: Meet In The Middle
To play this game, place 6 to 8 flashcards in a line on the floor. Next, place one student at one end of the line of flashcards and another student at the other end of the line. The kids should then jump forward and land on the first flashcard and say that word out loud. Next, the two students should jump forward again and land on the next flashcard and say that word out loud.
The two students should continue doing that until they meet in the middle of the line of flashcards. When they meet, the two children should play rock, scissors, paper. The winning student gets to stay where they are. The losing student must sit down, and a new student then comes and stands at the end of the line of flashcards.
Then the game continues. Each student should jump forward to the next flashcard and then say the word out loud. When they meet, they should play rock, scissors, paper and losing student should sit down. The aim of the game is to get to the other end of the line. This game is super fun and kindergarten students really love playing it.
Game 15: Animals Guessing Game
This next ESL game for kindergarten students is great for learning the names of animals in English. Students will see an outline of an animal and must guess the animal name before the time runs out. There are 10 rounds.
Game 16: Prepositions Game
One topic that ESL kindergarten students learn is prepositions of place such as on, in, and under. This fun prepositions game is great for teaching prepositions of place to kids. Students will see a scene for five seconds and must try to remember where the objects are. Next, the scene will disappear, and students will be asked a question, such as “Where is the teddy bear?”. Then, students must say the correct answer using the correct preposition of place.
Game 17: I Spy With My Little Eye
The game ‘I Spy’ is a super game to play with ESL kindergarten students to review vocabulary they have learned. If you’re not familiar with the game ‘I Spy’, the rules are simple. The teacher or a student should look around the classroom and choose an object without telling the rest of the class.
Then, the teacher/student should give a clue to what object they are thinking of by saying telling them the first letter of the word by saying ‘I spy with my little eye something beginning with b.” Next, the rest of the class looks around the classroom and tries to guess what object they are thinking of. The student who guesses correctly gets to choose the next object.
Game 18: Fruits and Vegetables Guessing Game
This ESL kindergarten game is great for teaching fruit and vegetables vocabulary in English. Students will see an outline of a fruit or vegetable and must guess what it is before the time runs out. Each fruit or vegetable word is in the plural form, so this game is also great for reviewing plural nouns.
Game 19: Duck Duck Goose
Duck Duck Goose is another fun game that kindergarten students love. This classic game can be easily adapted for ESL kindergarten classes to review vocabulary. In the classic game of Duck Duck Goose, students should sit in a circle and one student is ‘it’. The student who is ‘it’ should walk around the circle and touch each student on the head and say ‘duck’. At some point, the student who is ‘it’ can say ‘goose’ at which point the ‘goose’ should jump up and try to run around the circle and sit back down before the other student takes their seat.
To adapt this game for ESL kindergarten classes, simply replace the words ‘Duck Duck Goose’ with the target language from the lesson. For example, if you’re teaching about fruit, you can change the words to ‘Apple Apple Banana’.
Game 20: Feelings And Emotions Game
A common topic that ESL kindergarten students learn is ‘feelings and emotions’. This fun game asks students to guess the feeling/emotion. Students will see a blank emoticon and will be asked ‘Are you happy?”. Students must then choose either ‘Yes, I am.’ or ‘No, I am not.’ Next, the feeling/emotion will be revealed. If the students guessed correctly, they get a point.
Thanks for reading. I hope you found some inspiration for your next ESL kindergarten classroom game. Before you go, don’t forget to check out our free resources for teaching English including Activity Videos, PPT Games, PowerPoint Lessons, ESL Worksheets, and Printables.