Suffixes - Games and ESL Activities

Verb to Noun Connect 4

ESL Suffixes Game - Reading, Spelling, Listening and Speaking Activity - Low Intermediate - 25 minutes

In this captivating suffixes activity, students play games of Connect 4 where they change verbs into nouns using specific suffixes. The students are divided into groups of three. Two students play the first game and one student judges the players' answers. The two players are given a copy of game board 1 and the student acting as judge is given a copy of the game 1 answers. The aim of the game is to get four squares in a row, either vertically, horizontally or diagonally, while at the same time trying to stop the other player from getting four in a row. The players win squares by changing verbs into nouns using certain suffixes and spelling the nouns correctly. The suffixes for game 1 are written on the board: -ation, -tion, -sion, -ment. The first player looks at the verb in the square and decides which suffix can be used to create a noun (i.e. ation, -tion, -sion, -ment). The student then says the noun and spells it. The student acting as judge listens and checks the noun and spelling on their answer sheet. If the noun and spelling are correct, the player writes their name in the square. It's then the other player's turn to choose a square and make a noun. If the player says the wrong noun or spells the noun incorrectly, play passes to the other student. The first player to get four in a row wins the game. If no one manages to do this, the player with the most squares wins. When a group has finished, they are given a copy of game 2 and the students swap roles, giving another student the chance to act as judge. Then, the suffixes for game 2 are written on the board: -ance, -ence, -al. At the end of game 2, the students swap roles again and play game 3 with suffixes: -ure, -ing, -age.

Suffix Blockbusters

ESL Suffixes Game - Listening and Speaking Activity - Intermediate - 20 minutes

In this fun suffixes game, students guess words that contain certain suffixes from given clues. A five-by-five hexagon grid is drawn on the board and suffixes are written into the 25 hexagons. The class is then divided into two teams and a colour is allocated to each team, e.g. red and blue. The two teams then decide which direction they want to play - top to bottom or left to right. The aim of the game is to connect the hexagons from one side of the grid to the other. This is a fairly strategic game and the students need to choose their moves carefully in order to win the game, blocking the other team when necessary. The game starts with the center hexagon. The clue is given for the suffix in the hexagon (-sect), i.e., to cut. The two teams then race to say a related word with that suffix, e.g. dissect. The first team to give a suitable word wins the hexagon and it is coloured accordingly. The winning team then chooses the next hexagon. The clue is given for the suffix in that hexagon and both teams race to answer as before. The first team to connect their hexagons from top to bottom or left to right wins the game. This game can also be played in groups of five with two teams of two and one quizmaster who reads the clues.

Suffix Dominoes

ESL Abstract Nouns and Suffixes Game - Matching, Listening, Speaking and Writing Activity - Intermediate - 30 minutes

In this engaging suffixes game, students match suffixes to words to make abstract nouns and then use the nouns to make sentences. The students are divided into groups of three and each group is given a set of dominoes. The students shuffle the dominoes and deal out five each, leaving the rest in a pile face down. The top domino from the pile is then placed face up on the table. The first player puts down one of their dominoes, making sure that the suffix or word on their domino matches with the word or suffix on either side of the domino on the table to make an abstract noun. If the player forms an abstract noun successfully, they score a point. For an extra point, the player then uses the noun in a sentence. The other players then take it in turns to match their dominoes in the same way by putting them down at either end of the domino chain and making a suitable sentence when an abstract noun is formed. If a player cannot put down one of their dominoes, they take one from the top of the pile and put it down if they can. If there are no dominoes left in the pile, play passes to the next student. When a player has gotten rid of all their dominoes, the game ends. The students then add up their scores. The player with the most points wins the game. Afterwards, the students can shuffle the dominoes and play again. When the students have finished, they categorize the abstract nouns into their different types, e.g. feelings, states, concepts, etc. The answers are then checked and other abstract nouns are elicited for each category.

Suffix Question Time

ESL Suffixes Activity - Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking - Intermediate - 30 minutes

In this insightful suffixes activity, students complete questions that contain abstract nouns using suffixes and then ask, answer and discuss the questions with a partner. The students are divided into pairs (A and B) and each student is given a corresponding worksheet. The students then take it in turns to read out the questions on the worksheet to their partner, who listens and completes the word stem with the correct suffix: -hood, -dom, -ship, -ness or -tion. If their partner completes the question with the correct suffix, they score a point. The student with the most points at the end wins. Students then move on to ask, answer and discuss the questions with their partner. When the students have finished, there is a class feedback session to go through their answers to the questions. Any interesting findings can then be discussed in more detail.

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