Hot Potato!

cartoon picture of a smiling potato

Purpose:  to practice conjugating verbs in a fun and energizing game

Preparation Time:  none

Materials Needed:  a soft ball or beanbag


  1. Tell the class that they are going to play a game that will help them to practice verb tenses in English.
  2. Set the verb tense for the game. For example, past tense, third person singular, first person, future, etc. Have the class brainstorm some examples of verbs using the selected verb tense (i.e. for third person singular, “she dances,” “he eats,” “it runs,” etc.).
  3. Set a timer for a set amount of time (i.e. 30 seconds). Toss the ball to a learner. The learner must say a verb using the selected verb tense, then  toss the ball to another learner. Each learner must say a different example.
  4. When the timer goes off, the learner who is holding the ball has the hot potato! The learner can either be eliminated, or get a strike.
  5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 until there is one learner remaining, or until everyone has at least one strike.

Modification: Instead of conjugating verbs, have the learners call out words from a category, such as foods, adjectives, body parts, etc.


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