Communication is our society's backbone.
Communication takes place where there is speech. Without speech, we cannot communicate with each other, and language is the means of communication. Therefore, the importance of speaking is enormous for students of any language. Without speech, a language is reduced to a mere script.
The ability to speak confidently and fluently is needed, and children will develop their oral skills as they grow up and learn throughout their lifetime.
What are speaking skills?
Speaking skills are defined as the skills, which allow us to communicate effectively. They give us the ability to convey information verbally and in a way that the listener can understand.
The question arises, how can we build speaking skills in children? Children will learn speaking skills and have command over the languages during their primary and secondary schooling.
For your reference, we have enlisted some popular and fun speaking games for kids for an engaging, interactive, and student-centered speaking and language learning experience.
Kids will love playing such games and hone their speaking skills in real-time.
Who is telling the truth?
Have your students write five facts about themselves that nobody in the class knows about on paper, including their names on the top. Collect the sheets and pick up five students to stand in front of the class. Read aloud one of the facts that pertain to one of these students.
The five contend that the fact is their own, and the class then proceeds to examine them to determine who is telling the truth and who is lying. Each student is permitted to pose a question to one of the five students.
Then, after a round of questions, the students have to guess who is telling the truth. Students with the most points win the game.
To play online, click here.
Variations on the game Taboo
This conversation game can be played in two different manners:
Make a PowerPoint presentation with a noun on every slide. Have one student come forward and sit against the PowerPoint presentation. The other students take turns describing the words on the slides, and the student in the foreground needs to guess them.
Make small groups of four or five students. Place a stack of randomly named cards at the centre of each group. Have your students take turns describing a noun for their group members to guess. The group member guessing the correct answers keeps the card so that, finally, the group with the most cards wins.
Click here to play, online taboo game.
Descriptive drawing activity
This is an exciting game. To play, make a group of two students and give each student a picture; ask them not to show pictures to one another. Have them describe the picture so that the other partner can rightly draw the picture; without actually seeing the provided picture.
Comic strip descriptions
Like descriptive drawing, this game provides each student with a portion of a comic strip, placing it face down so they cannot see each other's cards. Then, students should describe their image and put the comic strip in the correct order. Once done, the students should guess the order, show one another their portion, and check if they did it correctly.
To play online, click here to play.
Played best with a group of children from above kindergarten; in the secret message game, have students sit in a line or circle and ask the first student to whispers a short message to the next in line, then pass from person to person in whispers along the line or around the circle. Then, ask the last participant to call out the message they heard to the whole group and have everyone laugh about how the message has invariably changed as it has been passed along.
Debates and elocution have always been considered one of the best games at honing students' speaking skills and improving their command of the language and thinking skills. To play:
- Provide each student with a piece of paper with "for" written on one side and "against" on the other.
- Readout a topic or controversial statement, and have each student hold up their paper showing the "for" or "against" side depending on their opinion.
- Pick any of them to explain their position and participate in a short debate.
Make sure they debate in English; it will also help you assess their hold on the language.
Quite similar to debating, in impromptu speaking games, all you have to do is prepare a list of topics that students can talk about. Divide the class into two or four teams and have each student choose one number—the order they will go. Each student will be required to complete an unprepared statement and speak for at least 45 seconds. As the student speaks, the other team listens to hesitation, grammatical mistakes, and vocabulary mistakes. If the teams can correctly identify a mistake, they obtain the point. Lastly, the team with the highest points wins.
Tell me a story
This is a fun way to bring students together to tell a story. You can use a fairy tale board game or design your own. Instruct students to roll the dice and tell their story using the character they are landing on.
You can also create your own board game by pasting pictures cut out from magazines, storybooks or even celebrity photos.
Have four students sit in the front row of the class; each student needs to stand behind them and act as a controller. Provide the controller with a stack of cards that contain names. Then, the controller will hand a noun to one of them, have him/her start to tell a story and continue to tell until the controller decides to hand another noun to another student to take over the story.
To play online, pick any game from here.
Call my bluff/Two Truths, One Lie
Have each student in the class write three statements about themselves on a piece of paper, i.e. two truths and One Lie. Have them read their statements, and their classmates ask them what statement is a lie and the truth. If they guess correctly, then they win. Switch partners every five minutes to keep the game going and give students even more time to practice their speaking/listening skills. Finally, gather the whole class and announce a new thing they learned about another student to recap. This is a fun game and great at getting to know you kind of game. It is also excellent for the practice of speaking, especially in the English language, but be sure to listen to your students and assess their mastery of the language.
Never have I ever
To play this fun game, have your students raise their five or fewer fingers in the air. The student who comes first tells the classroom something they have never done. Those who did this activity should point their fingers down and tell the class a story about this activity. Until then, they share the story; you can identify their mistakes and correct them later after the game. And, in the latter case, a student who has no fingers left to rise loses the game.
Teach the Class!
This is an entertaining activity for advanced English language learners.
To play, form a small group of students, assign each team a grammar, vocabulary or culture point that they are supposed to teach to the class. The two students work together to prepare activities and lesson plans and teach the class's subject.
Meanwhile, the pair teaches the class, the teacher should play the role of the student, but evaluate the lesson after the game and correct any mistakes the "teachers" make!
The Yes or No
This is an exciting game, where participants have to respond but cannot say yes and no. Just pair students up and play. When one student loses, they are eliminated and pair the winning partner with another winner. In this way, you can create an exciting tournament of yes, no and help students improve their speaking skills.
"Simon says," it is an excellent and popular game for kids. To play this game, you play the role of Simon during the game, stand in front of the class and make an action and say Simon says [specific action]. Students are responsible for copying what they do. Repeat this process by selecting various actions to maintain the game. Then do an act, but this time make sure you only act and do not speak 'Simon Says'. Students who do the action this time is out and must sit down. The winner becomes the last student standing.
To make it difficult, speed up the actions. Lastly, reward students for good behaviour by allowing them to play the part of Simon.
You may play online here.
What is My Problem?
What is my problem is a brilliant game of English language practising giving advice. The game should be played after the Giving Advice vocabulary lesson has taken place. It is an excellent way to verify what they have remembered and what needs to be reviewed. To begin playing this game, write down any ailments or problems related to your most recent lesson on post-it notes and stick a post-it note on each student's back. Ensure the students mingle and ask for advice from other students to help solve their problems. In addition, students should guess their issues based on the advice they get from their peers. You can also use more complicated or obscure issues to add more interest to the party.
A my name is _______
In this fantastic talking game, each participant takes turns by adding one name and one thing, all in alphabetical order. The first participant might say: A, my name is Andrew, and I like apples, and the next person could say B, my name is Bob and continue to share about themselves, so the game goes with each participant reciting and adding to the chain. It would help you listen to them, know where they used the wrong vocabulary, made grammatical errors, and talked about it once the game is over.
Wood shake is an action-packed ESL game that works against the clock. The game gives players a 16 random letters of the alphabet and a time limit of three minutes. During the given time, players have to develop as many English words as possible using the letters they have and get points every time they make a new word.
The letters need not touch each other or be in a particular pattern like they do in crossword puzzles, and the letters could be selected in any order. Word shake is an excellent vocabulary-building game that is suitable for beginners and advanced students.
The Human Brain Cloud is a project, a learning tool, a game, or maybe even a social experiment. The game is described as "a massively multiplayer word matching game;" this is a complex yet straightforward game. To start playing, you are provided with random words, and your aim should be to type words, phrases or even phrases that you associate with the words you get.
The game has neither right nor wrong answers. The Human Brain cloud simply takes your answers and adds them to the association bank.
After you have introduced your answer, you are told how many people in the world made the same word association, and if you are the first, you will get the message "new association."
When you play the game and press Human Brain Cloud, the real fun begins; each word you click will become the central word and will be surrounded by other associated words and will help you learn the vocabulary.
Developed to let players write a word for each category, starting with a specific letter, ahead of other players to get the best score. It is ideal for children over two years old.
To begin playing, get together and choose at least six categories, such as animals, food, countries, school subjects, movies, books, celebrities, etc. Once you have them all, ask a player to say letters into their head and tell them to stop. He/she may then unveil the letter to everyone. Once you all know, try and find a word beginning with this letter for each category.
The first person to get one for each should scream, "Stop!". So everybody should halt writing. Reveal your answers. If you have one word for each category, you get ten points for each. However, if somebody else has the same word, then you both get five points. Go on as long as you like, with as many rounds as you can handle, then count your points!
To play online, click here.
ELSA is an English-language app that has helped about 10 million students, professionals, and travellers learn to speak English with an American accent.With over 1600 lessons covering day-to-day conversations in English, easy assistance in English vocabulary & an effortless and easy-to-use tool for English pronunciation and accent training, the bite-sized lessons help users sound more confident about the language and help learn new phrases. Users also receive instantaneous feedback from ELSA's Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology.
Furthermore, the app allows users to pass a speech test custom-made by world-class experts to thoroughly analyze their strengths and weaknesses around the English language and American emphasis. It is available in multiple languages as well: Afrikaans, Albanian, Arabic, Bengali, Bulgarian, Burmese, Catalan, Chinese and more.
ELSA also has an enormous collection of English learning games: Practice English conversation with challenging games to discover the heart of English. English skills like pronunciation, grammar, word stress, pace, intonation, listening, and conversation can be enhanced with in-app learning games. The applications cover nearly 40 topics ranging from travel tips to job interviews for travellers and professionals to explore. ELSA is also an excellent tool for students preparing for the TOEFL, TOEIC and IELTS exams.