Classroom word games for learning English vocabulary

Crossword Puzzles


classroom games tips and ideas


learning and teaching resources

Crossword puzzles are popular classroom games, useful for vocabulary teaching and revision. There are 36 topic-based crosswords to choose from. If your students enjoy this activity, you could expand it by playing related word games.


Fun, interactive, great tools for learning. Who doesn't like to play classroom games? Here are some ideas to inspire you. These activities can be used in any topic!

The suggested games focus on spelling, writing and vocabulary building. They require minimal preparation and can be used just to practise any vocabulary.

Below you will find descriptions of the following classroom games:

• across or down
• circle the words
• noughts and crosses


To browse all of our crossword puzzles with verbal clues puzzles sorted alphabetically by topic, use this resource guide. Also, we offer a variety of online word games that go well with these printables.



ideas for extra classroom games

Below you will find some classroom games that go well with our crossword puzzles. Any game can be used in any vocabulary topic.


across or down


  • Students have copies of a crossword puzzles in front of them.
  • One kid chooses the longest word from the list and writes it vertically on the board in capital letters, from top to bottom.
  • The other kids come up one by one and add other words from the list, like in a crossword puzzle, across or down.

circle the words


  • Write your vocabulary words on the board. The words are not in any order but scattered all over.
  • Divide the class into two teams. Give a piece of chalk to a kid from each team.
  • Read the definition of a word. The first student to circle the correct word wins a point for his/her team.

noughts and crosses


  • Draw on the board a Noughts and Crosses grid with your vocabulary words in the boxes.
  • Divide the class into two teams. Team A plays with an X and Team B with an O.
  • Team A chooses a box and say the definition of the word.
  • If the answer is correct, rub out the word and write an X in the box. If the answer is wrong, and Team B can correct it with their first guess, you write an O in that box. Then Team B takes the turn, etc.
  • The winner is the team which first completes a line in any direction (vertically, horizontally or diagonally).