The tongue twister game

All levels and ages enjoy tongue twisters. They work well as a warm up to get students speaking, and they help students to practise pronouncing difficult sounds in English.

Author
Kate Joyce

Procedure

  • Write some tongue twisters on the board or on pieces of paper to distribute to students. Here are some examples:  
    • She sells sea shells on the sea shore.
    • A proper copper coffee pot.
    • Around the rugged rocks the ragged rascal ran.
    • Red lorry, yellow lorry, red lorry, yellow lorry.
    • A big black bug bit a big black bear.
    • Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers. Where's the peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked?
  • Ask students to read the tongue twisters aloud. Then ask them to read them again but faster. Then ask them to read them as fast as they can three times in a row.
  • Ask the students if they know any tongue twisters in their L1 or another language they might know. Have a go at saying them yourself. This usually causes a good laugh, and makes the activity more two-way and interactive.
  • Now ask the students to have a go at creating their own tongue twisters. This activity is a variation of the well-known 'Consequences' game. Write the following questions on the board:
  1. Write your first name
  2. What did she/he do?
  3. Where?
  4. When?
  5. Why? Because …
  • Now give students the following instructions:
    • Get into teams of about five people.
    • On a piece of blank paper write your answer to question 1.
    • Pass the paper to the person on your right. Write an answer to question 2 on the paper you have just received. Your answer must begin with the first sound in the person's name (e.g. Bob – bought a bike).
    • Pass the paper on again and write an answer to question 3, again using the sound at the beginning of the name.
    • Continue until all the questions have been answered.
    • Pass the paper back to the person who started with it. Read all of the tongue twisters aloud.
  • It might help if you give the students some examples before they begin the exercise:
    • Bob bought a bike in Bali on his birthday because he was bored.
    • Susan sang a song at the seaside on the 6th of September because she saw some sunshine.
    • Laura laughed in the laundrette at lunchtime because she lost her laundry.
Language Level

Comments

Submitted by Zozan on Sat, 01/10/2009 - 13:00

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I like this activity!

I'm going to try this Monday and hopefully they will like it.

Thank you so much for sharing this!

Submitted by learnpearl on Sun, 06/21/2009 - 10:07

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This is a fun lesson!  I used it with a group of adult learners (level B1) and they all thoroughly enjoyed it.  I will also try it with 14-year olds.  I am sure that it can work with all levels.  Thank you. 

Submitted by chetana on Tue, 01/10/2012 - 13:39

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i like this game or acivity.............

my mam/bhamare mam suggest me that i play this game or search on the topic........

then i go to the cyber cafe and joint this site.....

i learn new things from this game.

thanks for avalable me this site and thanks to bhamare mam for suggesting me this site.

Submitted by Sally Trowbridge (not verified) on Fri, 12/21/2012 - 09:39

In reply to by chetana

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You can listen to lots of tongue twisters here: http://learnenglishkids.britishcouncil.org/en/tongue-twisters Have fun! Sally

Submitted by German on Thu, 05/12/2022 - 20:57

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I really appreciate it to share this tongue twister game, my students love it, and now I plan every single weekend to play with them. I found another resources about tongue twister and we I have a lot of fun. Thank you!

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