Family members games

All the following games and activities for kindergarten, preschool and ESL students have been tried and tested in classrooms by The Magic Crayons, who are experienced teaching professionals currently working in Japan and China.

1. Happy Families

Materials: Family Flash Cards
To Play: Make sure the kids know all the family words and can say "'I'm daddy" etc.
Using the family cards; daddy, mummy, brother, sister, baby, grandma, grandpa, make seven lines, you can assign which students are which family members. The whole class should be split (fairly evenly) into a row of daddys, mummys, brothers etc. Have the 7 lines spaced as far away as the room limits. Countdown, 3, 2, 1 go and have students make one 'family' i.e. one daddy, one mummy, one brother etc. hold hands then sit down. The first 'family' (one group of seven kids) to sit down is the winner. Encourage the kids to say "I'm baby" when you ask them. Due to the odd number you may have to fudge some groups or use yourself and the Japanese teacher to make up the numbers. Generally there are 30 kids in classes so that would make 4 families, just try to make sure that the kids don't simply go straight to their friends; model that only one of each line (i.e. each family member) is needed.

2. Where's My Baby? (aka hide the cards)

Materials: Family/Emotions Flash Cards
Games 17/20
To play:
Review cards. Count how many there are. Get kids to line up and lead them out of the classroom into the corridor outside and sit them down. Explain that they have to be quiet and they have to count to 10. Whilst they do this, creep back into the classroom and hide the cards (but in very obvious places) so that the kids can see part of them. Then walk back outside and lead the kids in again, making a big show of the fact you have lost your baby. Look around the room and encourage the kids to find the cards. When all have been found, elicit them all then count them up and check you have the right amount. Rinse and repeat yeah.

3. Spanish Inquisition

Materials: Family / Feelings Flash Cards (Daddy, Mummy, Brother, Sister, Baby, Grandpa, Grandma, Family - Happy, Sad, Angry, Hot, Cold, Sleepy, Thirsty, Hungry, Tired)
To play:
Review the FCs (Family and Feelings) Divide the class into two lines with some space in between them. Place all the FC's on the floor between the 2 teams. Team 1 is the "Inquisitor team" and asks all the questions. The first student in team 1 must ask the first student in Team 2 to identify a card using the formula: "[Name], what's this?" and pointing to the card If the student answers correctly, their team scores a point. If not, the "Inquisitor team" scores a point. The second student in team 1 then asks the second student in team 2 the next question, using the same formula, and so on. Switch teams as the game continues, so each team gets the opportunity to be the "Inquisitor team"

4. Grandpa Is Deaf

Materials: Feeling Flashcards/Family Flash Cards, namely Grandpa.

To play:
Intro the cards. Notice the kids aren't into them? Notice they really are more interested in doing wheelbarrow kicks? Well, worry no more.
Have them sit in a small group on the floor. Intro the cards in a terribly lacklustre manner. Show them the grandpa card. Act like an old man, say "Eh? What?" and put your hand to your ear. They will either laugh or think you are an idiot, either way make sure they know that grandpa is deaf. If possible tape the card to your chest. Then, walk to the other end of the room.

Shuffle the cards. Show the top card, have them repeat it in the same no-spit-shine way. Then approach one step, say "WHAT?" and put your hand to you ear. Do it again and again until you are right up on them and they are literally screaming the FC name.  Stumble back surprised. Hilarity ensues. 

Repeat until all the cards are cycled through or the teacher in the next classroom complains.

5. Feelings And Family

Title: Gesture Game
Materials: Family Flash Cards
To play:
Divide the class into two or more teams.
Bring one volunteer to the front and have him/her act out one of the family members without talking and without using the family finger symbols.
This will elicit some very funny interpretations of family members.
First team to correctly identify the family member gets the point.

6. Yo Mama Don't Work Here!

Materials: Family Flash Cards, 1-20 Flash Cards

To play:
Review FC.
Divide the class into two teams. Line up 7-8 number FC at the front of the room with the Mama FC secretly hidden behind one of them. Random kids from each group try to guess where Mama is by nominating one of the number FC. Go through each family member one by one until they have all be discovered. The winning team is the one with the most Family FC. Obviously.  

7. Gesture Game

Family Flash Cards
To play:
Divide the class into two or more teams. Bring one volunteer to the front and have him/her act out one of the family members without talking and without using the family finger symbols. This will elicit some very funny interpretations of family members. First team to correctly identify the family member gets the point.