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Card Slap Game (Karuta)

Theme: Games

I'd like to introduce a popular game in Japan known as Karuta. It's a big hit in Japanese classrooms and I'm certain that your students will be addicted in no time.

Materials: Flashcards, or small cards.

How to play: Students sit around tables (or on the floor) is small groups of 2-6. Spread cards out before them. Students sit with their hands on their heads to prevent cheating. Call out a card, and the students race to slap the correct card first. The student who slaps the correct card first gets the card and places it before them.
Make sure the students place their hands back on their head before calling out the next card. Continue calling out cards until their are none remaining, and the student with the most cards at the end is the winner.

Variations: This game can be used with any vocab words. You can also get more grammar practise out of this game by making students ask a question before you call out the next card. For example;

Students: What do you like?
Teacher: I like ice-cream
The students slap the ice cream card.
Students: What do you like?
Teacher: I like chicken
The students slap the chicken card

Once they get the hang of this game, you can also make this a student based activity by making one student in each group a little teacher who calls out the next card instead of you.

For small children:

Here's a Youtube Video by Genki English showing how to play Karuta at a young learner's level.

When playing with small children you can also use fly swatters to hit the cards to avoid injury, and limit it to two children at a time so that they don't bump heads with each other.

Other Fun Games on Kids ESL

Photo by stockvault http://www.stockvault.net/photo/107503/playing-cards

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