The first day teaching a new EFL class is the most important. You’ll be setting the tone for the rest of the course, establishing ground rules and most importantly, getting to know the English level of your students. The first day is always about getting them to feel comfortable and come out of their shell to talk. These fun EFL icebreakers will do just that, so jot them down for your first day of teaching a new class!
Balderdash. Level: Advanced EFL Students
This game will encourage EFL students to use their creativity and maybe learn a few (weird) words. Write down a list of some off-the-wall, little-known English words and their definitions, I suggest using this page to find lost English words. Have students write down a convincing definition and hand them to you. You should write the real definition as well and mix it in with the students’ definitions. Read off the definitions and have students vote on which one they think is real. Points are awarded to those who guessed correctly and also those whose definition was voted on!
Interview and Introduce. Level: All EFL Students
Divide the class into pairs. On small slips of paper write down hints for the students to ask their partner, for example “Find out their name, age, birthplace”. You can modify this for the level of the EFL class, so for more advanced students you can offer complicated hints, like “Find out what their dream vacation is.”
After the interviewing is done, have students present each other. Don’t forget to include yourself in this activity too!
One Beep. Level: All EFL Students (even children!)
This isn’t really a conversation starter, but it will have your students laughing! Also a great EFL activity to practice numbers. Have your students count-off, but instead of saying 1,2,3,4 etc. have them replace every other number with the word “beep”. So: 1, beep, 3, beep, 5, beep etc. You can change this up to practice just even or odd numbers, or keep them on their toes by only replacing numbers divisible by 3.
It may sound easy, but I bet you won’t make it to 20 without someone forgetting to say “beep”!
Need more EFL icebreaker activity ideas? Check out these Top 5 Icebreakers for the EFL Classroom.