Academic Games


Last week, I shared my Genre/Format Introduction Lesson, where I stated that I play a pyramid review game with my students before the assessment. After saying this, I had a couple of people, including Julee M., ask me to share more about the pyramid game, so I decided to share my post about academic games. 

I will say, none of these games were originally mine. As a teacher, though, we all borrow and share – so I am happy to share them with you.

Vocabulary Pyramid
Set up like the $25,000 Pyramid, students are given topics and they must have their partner guess each topic using the vocabulary and knowledge from the unit/lesson.
Talk a Mile a Minute
VERY similar to the pyramid game: Students get into pairs (A & B) and one faces away from the board/projector while the other faces it. A student gets a list of terms based on a topic that is being taught. They then go word to word giving clues and trying to get through all of the words. The fastest wins!
After the game, students should record the clues, illustrations, examples that helped them guess each vocabulary word.
 4 Corners
4 corners is like an interactive multiple choice assessment/activity. This game begins with all of the students in the middle of the room. The teacher asks a question and each corner (or side) is an option. Students then go to what they choose or think is correct.
 Swat It
For Swat It you will need 2 fly swatters. The teacher posts vocabulary words on a wall (a word wall would work) or makes a PowerPoint/Word document with the vocabulary words. Then 2 students go head to head. The teacher gives clues or definition and students have to swat the word. I have heard that using a fly swatter is the best way because it is obvious who is first; rulers make it much harder to see who was first if it was close.
Post-It Password
Students put a post it on their foreheads with a vocabulary word on them and then walk around the room having conversations with other students to figure out what their words are.
Draw a Conclusion
This is one of my favorites. It is a backwards circle map. Instead of starting with a topic in the middle and defining it in the circle, with Draw a Conclusion the teacher puts the clues in the circle and the clues have to be used to guess the topic.
Can you guess the answer?
That’s right—Jiminy Cricket!
Self explanatory.
Vocabulary bingo
Hint: Use Smarties and kids can eat them when the game is over.
Vocabulary Squares
Like Hollywood Squares. One team is X, one is O, and the team is trying to get tic-tac-toe by answering vocabulary questions.
Draw Me
Vocabulary Charades
Cards with vocabulary words and then the definitions are flipped over on a table and students have to flip them over trying to find their match.
Find your Pair
Type up all of the vocabulary words and then sentences or definitions that go with the words. It is then the students’ job to find their pair.


I hope you have fun playing these in your classroom!!

3 thoughts on “Academic Games”

  1. Thank you for sharing this resource. The most wonderful thing about educators is that the majority of them are willing to share and learn from each other.


Leave a Comment