Play Grammar Games!

Let's face it. Sometimes, you need to use grammar games in the classroom to fight grammar boredom. Here are a few games both my students and I have enjoyed.

Diagram Sentences

When you read about how Frank Antonson's middle school students reacted to the sentence diagramming club that he started, you'll want to start diagramming with your students.

Students LOVE diagramming sentences! I'm not crazy. It's true.

Read more here!

Sentence Diagramming Puzzles

I have made up a sentence diagramming game that I call Diagramming Puzzlers. I think of a sentence to diagram and give grammatical clues that can be used to solve the puzzle.

I include a Puzzler in each of my monthly newsletters.

You can see examples here.

The Adverb Game

This grammar game never gets old. I've played this in ESL classrooms, elementary school classrooms, and college classrooms, and it's always a total hoot.

This game focuses on adverbs that describe the manner in which something is done. It does not work for adverbs that tell time or location.

Here are the steps.

1. One student volunteers to leave the room.

2. The student chooses a manner adverb. For example: quickly.

3. The student returns to the classroom and the other students give this student orders. For example: Walk around the room. Stand up. Shut the door.

4. The person who has chosen the adverb has to follow his classmates' orders in the manner of his chosen adverb. (He must walk around the room quickly.)

5. After the student has been given at least three orders, his classmates can guess his adverb.

While playing this game in my college classroom, I was once ordered to pick my nose. My adverb was loudly. That was interesting...

Here are some adverbs that you can use.

quickly, slowly, angrily, happily, quietly, loudly, strongly, sheepishly, calmly, lazily, sleepily, fearfully, silently, painfully, seriously, dramatically, gracefully, stiffly, jerkily, drunkenly

Books With Grammar Games

I am a fan of Cambridge Handbooks for Language Teachers. Games for Language Learning is especially great for EFL and ESL classrooms.

The 208 page book contains games that are grouped into categories like "Picture Games" and "Sound Games."

You can easily modify them to fit virtually any level of grammar instruction. Check it out!

Games for Grammar Practice: Grammar Games and Interactive Activities is a spiral bound book with 114 pages and 40 games for you to use in the classroom.

The spiral binding makes it easy to photocopy the step by step instructions. It's great for the elementary level or an advanced level.

You'll also find more games at

Tell Me Everything You Know

1. Write a sentence on the board and set a time limit.

2. Students write down everything that they know about the grammar of the sentence.

3. When the time is up, students individually share their observations. If anyone else in the room has the same observation, they must cross if off of their list. If they are the only ones who have made that particular observation, they get a point.

4. Whoever has the most points wins.

If you want to teach or learn grammar the easy way, then follow a step-by-step program that clearly lays everything out for you and allows you to move at your own pace. The Get Smart program is presented in a logical sequence, so it's not an overwhelming mishmash of information. Before you know it, you'll be a grammar and sentence diagramming pro!

The whole program is online, so you have instant access to these lessons and videos. It's easy and fun. You can get it at
Keep learning and have fun!

Elizabeth O'Brien is the creator of the Grammar Revolution step-by-step grammar and sentence diagramming programs. Her programs are guaranteed not only to teach you grammar, but also to give you more confidence in your communication skills.

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