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What I really love about practicing languages is that you don’t necessarily need to do special activities to get it done. Everything you normally do in your native language works for practicing language (English in this case); you just need to adjust some things. And this includes playing games! Maybe you’re thinking, ‘Whaaat? Play games to study?’ but it’s really good, believe me! It’s a great opportunity to practice what you have been learning.

I really, really like games. When I meet with my family, we always play a board game: UNO, Monopoly, Ludo. It’s just a fun way to spend an afternoon with your family! And everyone can play, from kids to adults. And since buying a board game where I live that’s not in Spanish is almost impossible or expensive, I go with digital board games to have fun with my students, people from the internet, and even my family and friends! (Well… I don’t always get to convince my family to play with me in English, but that’s not the point.)

Playing games is an awesome way to improve your vocabulary. You get to practice the vocabulary you already know and even learn some new ones! And if you play with someone else, you practice your speaking at the same time.

My favorite games to practice English

TIP: to find your favorite board games in English on your smartphone, change your phone’s language to English that way the app store will show you apps in English.

1. Scattergories

This game is really simple you just need paper and a pencil. In a piece of paper you draw 5 of 6 columns and write different categories, one person tells a letter and you need to write things from each category that starts with that same letter. The first person to complete all categories says STOPS and everyone have to put their pencils down. Scattergories is the digital form of this game. instead of paper, you need a phone and internet. The website is really simple and the game is the same as the original one. You can create a new game and invte your friends to play, or you can join a group with other people. visit the website.

2. Words with Friends

If you love Scrabble, then you’ll love Word with Friends. It is a crosswords-puzzle game where players take turns building words (awesome to practice vocabulary). The rules are similar to Scrabble. You can look for friends through Facebook or you can be randomly assigned an opponent. You can play up to 40 games simultaneously using push notifications to alert you when it is your turn. There is the classic version and also a new version available called Words with Friends 2.

Download for free on Google Play or App Store.


3. Draw Something

Take turns drawing a picture and your partner has to guess the word! this game is really fun and you don’t need to have perfect drawing skills! With this mobile version you can play with your friends when you’re not together. This game is excellent to improve your vocabulary.

Download for free on Google Play and the App Store

A representation of onions in the app


4. Alphabear 2

You need to make words with the letters you have on the board. The idea is to make words with all the letters (tiles) from the board. Bears will appear on the board when you make words. The more letters you use, the bigger the bear will be!! This game was created to practice you English vocabulary, plus the bears are really cute so you should check it out. Download it for free on the Play Store or the Apple Store.

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5. New York Times games

Website. There are different games to choose from:

Spelling bee: where you have to make as many words as you can with 7 letters.

Wordle: you get 6 chances to guess a 5-letter word.

Connections: Group words that share a common thread.

6. Word Scramble by Cambridge

Beat the clock by unscrambling the letters to spell the words. Website

7. Steple

This is a daily word game which puts your knowledge of 4-letter English words to the test. Website

PRO TIP: Play any game you want in English (Ideally if it contains text). Because just by having the game in English it will force you to read and understand instructions or if any message it appears and in that moment you’ll be practicing English.

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