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Best Games for Learning and Practice English [Online & In-person]

Best Games for Learning and Practice English [Online & In-person]
Done with spending time with English grammar books but have not learned the English language the way you wanted. Then, plan to move to a less traditional learning method, and that is English games. People (kids and adults) are more engaged when they are playing. Moreover, games are an effective tool to motivate and stimulate an individual’s creativity in learning the English language. Among many ways to learn English, there are dozens of games that one can play with their friends to polish their skills. Also, a variety of kid’s English games are in the market and schools and online that they enjoy playing, resulting in their better English speaking skills without even realizing.
Unquestionably, you cannot master a skill without practicing it, and even if you are too shy or afraid to make mistakes, English games are designed for you. Because when you get into the playing mode, you listen, focus, and express yourself; this is how you learn.

In this article we have covered the following points:

  • Best ESL games for kids
  • English learning games for Adults
  • Online games to learn English
  • Apps for learning English
  • Video English games to learn English
So, ready to learn? Let’s go!

Best ESL Games for Kids

Fun games and activities are the most helpful way of teaching kids the English language. Either it is a Monday morning or time to end a boring class lesson, making use of that time while playing English games with kids will warm the kids up and improve their English. ESL teachers believe that playing English games is more beneficial than arranging an English lesson to make kids expert in English. Because while learning anything new, everybody makes mistakes or gets nervous, which is normal, and playing keeps this kind of stress away, and the will to win a game turns them into more creative and self-confident beings.

Best ESL Games for kids

Furthermore, arranging a reward, in the end, makes the kids focus more and excited to come back to school to learn more from English games.
Below is the list of English learning games for kids. Teachers mostly play them with kids during school hours. Other than school, kids can play them at home too.

1. How Old Are You

It is one of the beginner’s level games, as the name shows. Playing this game will let the kids learn digits, their fellow’s age, and how to ask for one’s age in the English language. To play this game, arrange 1-9 digits blocks in a box and follow the rules below:

How to play:

  • Shuffle the block each time, and repetition will make them learn digits.
  • Ask any of the students to ask their class fellows: ‘How old are you? , holding a box of blocks.
  • Other fellows will answer as ‘I am ___’ followed by picking their age number block from the box.
  • The student who will answer the question correctly will carry the box and question to the next fellow.
  • The game is over when the whole class is done asking one another.

2. The Classic Simon Says

It is the most fun game that can be played anywhere, like in school class, friends’ meet-ups, short picnics, and even during long rides. And if the students are not paying attention in the class, then play “Simon says’ to wake their brains up. It counts in learning English games because this improves the listening comprehension and vocabulary of its players.

How to play: 

  • One has to act as Simon during the whole game. (you can change the person for the next round of the game and if you are a teacher, be the Simon for the class)
  • Now tell the players, if Simon asks you to do something, act fast. Like Simon says, jump then jump. However, if you will only say an ‘action’ skipping, ‘Simon says.’ Like jump, and whoever will respond to it will be out.
  • Speed up the actions to make it more fun.
  • The winner will be the last one acting correctly. Reward them with the part of Simon for the next round.

3. Board Race

It is a fun and classic English game to keep the class active. Teachers can play this game at any time of the class to get the students’ attention. The board race helps the students learn English vocabulary words from their fellow mates and memorize their grammar. Teachers play board races to revise the previous week’s lecture or the current lecture. Excellent way of knowing what your students have learned so far.
The whole class needs to be split into two groups to play this game. If the class students are big in numbers, then make more than 2 groups. More groups, more fun, and more learning, ultimately.

How to play:

  • Make columns on the board according to the number of groups.
  • Write any topic at the top of the board.
  • In the form of a relay race, ask each group to write as many words related to the topic.
  • One point for the group for writing the correct word.
  • Misspelled or wrong words will not be counted, and the team with more correct and relatable words will win.

4. Hangman

To introduce kids to a new word or to remind them of the English words they have learned so far, Hangman is enjoyable to play. ESL or EFL teachers play this English game to warm up or wake the class up before a lecture.

How to play: 

  • Think of a secret word and draw blank lines for each letter separately on the board.
  • Pick any student to guess the alphabet; write on the blank line if the guess goes correct. If the guess is wrong, write it on the corner of the board and draw a part of a hanging man, it can be his leg, arm, or anything.
  • The wrong guess will complete the hangman image, and the correct ones will complete the secret word.
  • If the class guesses the word, they win. Otherwise, you won!

5. Get Up If You . . .

One of the best English learning games to keep kids’ minds active and teach them phrases with vocabulary. Also, kids learn to make new phrases while playing them. Teachers mostly play first with the kids, make them learn the tricks, and then pick any student from the class to stand in the middle and play.

How to play: 

  • Ask the whole class to sit in the circle and stand in the middle. 
  • Now say “Get up if you . . . “ending it with any description like “are wearing yellow dress” OR “have blonde hair.”
  • After saying so, kids with a yellow dress or blonde hair will get up and exchange their place.
  • Whoever will not act accordingly will be out of the game.
  • Shuffle the middle standing person with kids, so they better learn English phrases while playing.

6. Pictionary

Turn an English learning lesson into a game, which will boost the kid’s confidence to stand in front of the entire class and present himself. Other than this, the kid’s vocabulary will be revised without even realizing it. Know that kids can play this game at home with their age fellows or adults for learning and fun purposes. Before playing this English game, prepare a box and add a bunch of words that you know, your kids can recognize from a picture.

How to play: 

  • Make a team of equal members and place the box filled with words along with a whiteboard and a marker.
  • Ask any member of Team-A to pick a secret word from the box and draw its image on the board. And let the team guess the word. If they guess it wrong, they will lose a point.
  • Repeat the same with Team-B.
  • Kindly make sure that each team member gets the chance to come to the board. Playing this will equally help them gain confidence and learn English.
  • Keep playing until all words are finished in the box.

7. Where Shall I Go?

Need to take a break but want to learn or practice English more? Then it’s time to learn by playing an English game. And, ‘Where Shall I Go?’ is a safe plan to practice prepositions, sentence making, speaking, and listening. For this game, one has to go blindfolded while their team members will direct him.
It will enhance the knowledge of both the blindfolded one and the team members. Teachers make use of this game to freshen up the minds of kids after lessons. They are preferred when played on the ground.

How to play:

  • Make a group of two teams and select one from each team to go blindfolded and play first.
  • Make an exciting yet twisted maze. Ask the blindfolded team member to start.
  • His team will direct him the path like a move straight, stop, go up, go down, turn right or left, pick things up if there’s any, and in doing so, take them to the endpoint. Record the time.
  • Repeat the same with the other team & record the time.
  • The winning team will be the one who has played their task in less time.
  • It is quite an exciting game, but teachers need to keep their eyes on kids so the blindfolded kid may not get hurt.

8. What’s My Problem?

ESL or EFL teachers play this game the most to practice independence of the English language. And when one of the kids gave advice and communicated well, the appreciation from the teacher or an adult for providing the right advice made the kid more confident. It makes the kids think of better pieces of advice and then communicate to their fellows. In other words, this English game is famous among teachers for enhancing speaking, listening, and taking or giving advice skills.

How to play: 

  • If kids are playing it after a lesson, teachers should make notes of the problems related to the previous learned study and stick it on the back of each student.
  • Once all students have their problems, they must mingle and ask the other class fellow for the solution.
  • While listening to the advice or solution, the student will guess the problem written on his back.
  • And this is how all the students will make their fellows guess the problems based on their advice.
  • This game can be exciting if the teacher assigns the topic and hints to the class about the problems they will guess.

9. Riddles

If you want your kids to use their and understand the twisted English statements, then playing Riddles with them should be among the list of English learning games. There are varieties of Riddles to play with kids like short, nature, math, animals, fruits, extended, logical, and funny.
Riddles are made to acknowledge kids about certain things or scenarios, and playing them will make them have fun. This English game will make them think better eventually.

How to play:

  • Please select the category of the riddle, share it with the kids so they may keep their thoughts restricted to that.
  • If you have more than 15 kids, make teams. And set a time limit for each riddle.
  • Ask the riddles one by one. The team that will give more correct answers will win.

English Learning Games for Adults

Adults are more conscious and afraid to make mistakes when it comes to practicing or speaking English. Some even do not like to be a part of the class to excel in this language. And it is normal – no need to grab a bundle of English grammar books or hire a private tutor. Instead, learn online how to speak English fluently or sit with your friends for a couple of hours daily and play English games. Playing with friends will surely make you forget about adult life problems, resulting in advanced English.

English Learning Games for adults

Below is the list of exciting games you can play with your friends. So here’s to no more judging, just learning and playing.

1. Two Truths and A Lie

If you are dodging your weekend self-study plan of learning English with a friend, get together. Do not worry! English learning games got your back. Playing this game will let you know your friends more, and if you focus on the sentences, you will learn. This game is a way to improve your speaking skills in the English language.

How to play: 

  • Distribute 3 cards to each player and ask them to write two truths and one lie on cards.
  • Start with any group member and let them read out loud what’s written on the cards. Do not let others guess you by your facial expression. Act neutral.
  • Let them all guess and focus on the listening, writing, and speaking skills too.
  • Once the guesses are made, either correct or wrong. Rotate the player.

2. Charades

The charades is an all-age group-friendly English game to learn more vocabulary from fellows and practice speaking. If you find it challenging to write on cards (action) or phrase a particular activity, learn it from the internet and put them all in a bag. Playing such English games will help you learn how to speak about specific actions and work done.

How to play: 

  • Get the cards, write different daily routine actions on them, like washing the car or doing dishes, and put them in a bag or box.
  • Make teams for playing against each other.
  • Set a timer like 20 seconds only for one act.
  • Ask one team member to mime the action and let their team guess it—one point for thinking the correct answer.
  • Actors should not be allowed to speak, and this rule will be the same for both teams.
  • The actor will be allowed to nod, only stating either the guess is right or wrong.
  • Repeat it with the other team.

3. Never Have I Ever

It is one of those English games that adults can play with kids to learn more about them and improve their English language. Before playing this game, please make a list of the questions you want to ask your fellows, maybe to know them better. Doing so will help you make questions in English, and then asking will enhance your speaking skills. Such English games are being played for years among friends. People who play these kinds of English games are more frequent in asking basic questions. Moreover, two people can also play this game.

How to play:

  • Before playing, ask everyone to make their own set of questions.
  • Call one person from the group out, and let everybody ask him one question each.
  • They will answer in “never” or “I have” with little details.
  • Repeat it with every friend.
  • Make sure not to repeat the questions as you may not learn new things.

Online Games to Learn English

Understandably, friends do not have time to sit together and play ESL games to master the English language in this rapidly changing world. But the digital world has come to the rescue. Hundreds of online games are made and are still in progress to help people learn the English language. Playing such games on your own can make you focus more and practice your skills better.

online games to learn english

Below are the lists of some English learning games that will surely make you learn new words.
Know that not all people like one game; it is privileged to select one according to your interest from various English games (free or paid).

1. Wordshake

Before learning a language, you should know its words or vocabulary first. Just the way we start any language learning. This fun game (Wordshake) has levels, and all levels have the letters of alphabets given in random order. This category makes it an action-packed ESL game, perform actions, learn and move to the new group.
Each level comes with a limited time duration like you get three minutes to make the words. So select the letters in any order you want, make a word out of them. Every time you make a new word, you will earn some points. This game is played mainly by beginners or students.

2. 4 Pics 1 Word

Want to learn, be active and have fun all together? Then download this game right now and tell the world who says you can either have fun or learn. Either you are holding an iOS or an Android device in your hands. This game is for all.
Each level of this got such an exciting question that will make you question your vocabulary and caliber. You will be shown 4 pictures and have to make one word for them; for example, you might have photos of coffee, soup, fire, and volcano together. And what about them? They are ‘Hot.’ Easy, right?
It might seem obvious to you, but some pictures will make you think hard. And this is how you will learn new things while playing English games on your own.

3. 7 Words

One of the best English learning games, it has 777 fun puzzles. This 7 words game is not simple as it is named. It is a highly addictive English learning game that you will not stop playing.
This user-friendly game will come with options on each stage; you will be given around 18 tiles along letters and seven definitions to make words from. The definition will be gray square or crossed out if you create the words that match it correctly.
The question is, how will you learn English while playing this advanced-level game? It is simple, every time you create a word, you will learn its definition too, this is how people learn and use it in daily life.

4. Human Brain Cloud

Whether you are a beginner or a high-level English learner, this game is for all. Calling it just a game won’t do justice because it’s a learning tool, social experiment, and project. Overall, it’s an excellent initiative.
The exciting part about the Human Brain Cloud is that it will give you a word, and you have to write all the words that associate with it. Words can be any that comes to your mind. For example: if the word is ‘shoes,’ your answers can be ‘heels,’ ‘black shoes,’ ‘sandals,’ ‘old shoes,’ ‘my shoes,’ or anything. This game comes with no limitations or right and wrong rules.
Once you are done giving your answers, this game will show you how many players have given the same answers across the globe. And if you write any word for the first time, this will notify you with a “new association” message.

5. ESL Crossword Puzzles

Some of you all must have grown up solving crossword puzzles in the newspapers; they were pretty exciting and fun to solve. The ESL crossword puzzles game gave the same rules and way to play, and the variety of puzzles in it made you question your comprehension and vocabulary skills, which is how you learn and get better.
This game comes with levels, simply choose the level that suits you and improve your reading, vocabulary, and comprehension skills. Furthermore, this game comes with various themes, too: common words in English (easy), Medical Vocabulary (intermediate), and English words from other languages (advanced).

6. The Grammar of Doom from Game Zone

If you are into adventurous games, then The Grammar of Doom from Game Zone is for you. It is designed in the form of temples with rooms in it. To get into a new or next room, you have to solve the puzzles. It is an intermediate or advanced level game; this will help you know about your vocabulary and grammar skills. In other words, make English sentences and solve all the puzzles.

Such an exciting way to learn English while playing!

Apps for Learning English

The advantage of this era is that you can be an expert in the English language by simply using an App. Like the English games for learning, there are apps too on the internet that can help you learn English. In other ways, they can act as your teachers. Below are a few apps that are known best for learning the English language.
Keep reading and choose the App of your choice and start practicing.

Apps for Learning English

1. Adaptive Spelling Quiz by SpellQuiz

Such an exciting App to learn from mistakes and learn the English language if you are a beginner or an intermediate. Some consider this an English game, but this App acts as a mentor. You can practice dictation as this well-designed App comes with a crystal clear voice too.
If you make any mistakes, this account will inform you. It will take you to the higher level step by step, as per your statistics. You can view your mistakes and achievements. Moreover, you can solve the quizzes to enhance your knowledge as this comes with a lot more.

2. Quiz Your English App

This Cambridge University Press produced App is a quality app to learn the English language. You can get access to it by simply logging in with your Gmail or Facebook account.
The fun part of this App is that it automatically finds an opponent; this helps its users to play and learn more efficiently. If you give wrong answers, this will end, and you will get to see all the results. Some consider this App for learning English for an official exam, but this part is paid but worth the money. To make the best use of your free time, downloading this App will be the best decision you will ever make.
You can play with any person around the globe; this means the exposure you will get through this App will be tremendous. Lastly, you can also get an idea of your country’s ranking and the world’s ranking.

3. FluentU

It is the best media-based App for all lever learners; beginner and intermediate or advanced. You can download it from both iTunes and Google Play stores. Engaging content keeps the people interested in it. It transforms the original and entertaining video clips like movie trailers, talk shows, videos, music, or news into fun online games to practice the English language.
The captions it shows come with meanings, definitions, and examples. It comes with instructions on all steps, which makes it easy to use for everyone. Also, the free trial of FluentU mostly catches the user’s attention. The quiz part in this App makes the English language relatively easy to learn.

4. HelloTalk

HelloTalk is the most used English conversational App. This free App provides you a platform to interact with any English native speaker around the globe. The features of speaking to other English speakers via chat, audio, and video calls, voice recordings are free for both iOS and Android users.
If you are too shy to speak with the actual person, this App is for you. Practice the English language on this App as much as you can till you excel in speaking it fluently.

Video English Games To Learn English

The inventions of video games have added spice to the monotonous routine. Who could have thought of playing, interacting, practicing, and learning the English language at one time? Nobody!
But just like all the English games mentioned earlier, add Video games to your list to learn English. Some people find playing simple English learning games tedious and hectic. These video games are to hold them back. These games will keep them actively involved and closer to daily life phrase learning, as in-game conversations will teach you different responses by practicing unique vocabulary.

video english games to learn english

1. Professor Garfield: Reading Ring

It is the most interactive English learning video game for beginners. It is a kind of puzzle, each puzzle has some questions, and you have to answer them correctly to get into another puzzle.
The Cat “Garfield” is thrown into a wrestling match, and you have to play to save his life. Each round comes with three comic panels, and you have to arrange that in the correct order. If they are arranged correctly, you will be asked a few questions then. Comics can be read out loud to you if you click on them, which will help you understand the English language. When you start playing this game, this will enhance your reading, listening, and understanding of English capabilities.

2. The Sims:

Nobody is too old to play video games. Add The Sims video game to your gaming list if you or your kid wants to improve their conversational language daily. This game is about creating your own digital house and a virtual family, and to do so, it makes you deal with all categories needed to build a luxurious lifestyle. When purchasing a house in real life, we deal with family relationships, furniture, and house appliance-related people and perform other activities; that’s the same case in this video game.
And as our primary concern is learning the English language by a game, The Sims will help you learn daily life sentences. Focusing on dealing with clients while playing, you can learn and practice the new vocabulary and then use that all in daily real life. The majority of the people play this game to excel in daily life conversations.


Like the game, VRCHAT is more like a chat box or chat room to communicate with thousands of people and make virtual connections. It has a video game, and while playing the game, your character can chat with new people.
This game lets you explore the world via its platform and helps you learn new English phrases and practice more often. This game is best for adults.

4. Call of Duty

If you are into playing action games but want to learn English too, then your search ends here. The famous Call of duty video game series is made to help you practice your English conversational skills. This game has a voice chat feature that allows you to chat with the other team members.
The upper-intermediate and advanced level game allows you to practice English with people from other accents and regions. By focusing on listening and speaking, this game will improve your accent and fluency. As this is a game, after all, you will learn new slang through it.

Final Thoughts

See! Games are not games anymore; there’s always another side. So, learn to play first and then play to learn, and this is how you get better. 
To stand out in this world, you need to work on your English speaking skills. Besides English games, many podcasts, Interviews, Documentaries, YouTube Videos, and Series can teach you how to speak English fluently. Everything is just a click away. To develop your interest in learning the English language, start it with English games. 

You got this!

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With over 3 years of experience in teaching, Chloe is very deeply connected with the topics that talk about the educational and general aspects of a student's life. Her writing has been very helpful for students to gain a better understanding of their academics and personal well-being. I’m also open to any suggestions that you might have! Please reach out to me at chloedaniel402 [at]