Modal Verbs - Babble Game

Resource Type
Worksheets & short activities
Resource Level
CEFR level B2

Aim of the Game

The aim of the game is to win points by making as many correct sentences as possible using different combinations of the given language within a time limit.



Explain to the learners that they are going to practise using modal verbs by playing a board game.

Divide the class into pairs and nominate each learner in a pair either A or B.

Explain that the learners have to use the target language to make accurate sentences. They get points for each piece of target language they use in a sentence. They can add as many other words necessary to their sentences, apart from other words featured on the game board. If they use one item they score one point.

If they use two items in a sentence they score 1 + 2 = 3 points for that sentence. If they use three items in a sentence they score 1 + 2 + 3 = 6 points for that sentence etc.

In a single sentence they can only combine items that are adjacent to each other on the game board (either horizontally, vertically of diagonally). Hence they can construct chains of various lengths throughout the game board to score more points.

They must use a different item first in each sentence they create, although the item doesn’t have to be the first word in the sentence.

Each learner has three minutes to try and create as many sentences and so score as many points as possible.

While learner A is playing, learner B should score of the number of items they use in each sentence they make.

Do some examples yourself to make it clear to the learners what they have to do.

Give out a copy of version A of the handout to each learner A. Count them down (3, 2, 1, Go!) and then let them play for three minutes. At the end of three minutes, pairs count up the score achieved.

Then give out handout B to learners B and give them three minutes to play.

The learner in each pair who scored the most points is the winner.



To make the scoring easier the first time you play the game, award a point for each item used, rather than the accumulative scoring system.

To encourage players to use certain items, designate points to each item by writing numbers in the boxes underneath the items. If the learner uses that item they score that number of points. In this way you can reward use of more difficult expressions.

The learners can be asked to write their sentences out, rather than just say them, if you prefer to give them written practice of the target language. If so, give them a longer time limit, say five minutes, but both players can play at the same time and then compare the points they’ve scored together.