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Teacher Edition (Classroom Logistics): ESL Grammar Auction – 029

Teacher Edition (Classroom Logistics): ESL Grammar Auction- an ESL Game

Episode Overview

In this “Teacher Edition” episode of Board Gaming with English, Dustin and Rich talk about how to implement an ESL game called “Grammar Auction” into your classroom. It can be a lot of fun and help engage your students in your English language classes. This game can also be used across disciplines. Give our episode a listen and try it out!

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(Transcript coming soon- support our podcast and email us a transcript of episode 29)


Implementing this Grammar Auction game in your classroom is fairly simple. It’s an ESL game that can help your students. The game can be used as a way to review grammar. Below are the steps to create the game and how to implement the game in your classroom.
Note: This game can be used across disciplines as well. You can change up the questions to be math questions, science questions, or questions related to any other subject you would like students to review.

Grammar Auction

Implementing this ESL game in your classroom is quite simple. You will need access to a projector or large board to write your questions on.Check out the PowerPoint we used.


  1. Create a number of questions and answers you would like to use in class. Make sure to create questions that have correct and incorrect answers. Allow for about 1 minute per question.
  2. Add each of the questions and answers to a PowerPoint slide, the board, or a large poster paper.
  3. Write the same questions and answers on the outside of small envelopes OR simply fold pieces of paper in half making sure the questions and answers are written on the outside. Each question and answer you give the class should have its own corresponding paper. The inside should contain the dollar amount the questions and answers are worth. The correct questions and answers should be worth money, while the incorrect questions should be worth a negative amount of money.
  4. Create fake money for the students to use for their bids. We prepared $150 per group.
  5. Optional: Create one auction card for each group to raise as they play.

How to Play

  1. Divide the class into small groups.
  2. Explain the rules to the class: Each group must decide which questions and answers they would like to bid on. A group must pay for the questions and answers if their bid is successful. Groups can gain money if they bid on questions and answers (in our case we used grammatically correct or incorrect sentences) that are correct, OR they can lose money if they bid on questions that are incorrect.
  3. Give each group a certain amount of money and an auction card (optional). We gave each group $150 and had 50 sentences.
  4. Put the first question and answer up on the board.
  5. Pretend you are an auctioneer. Ask the class, “Do I see $1? Who wants to buy this question and answer for $1?”
  6. If a student raises their hand (or auction card) then they claim the question and answer for $1. If another group raises their hand, then they claim the question and answer for $2. This continues until no more groups are interested, or you feel the question and answer should be sold.
  7. The question and answer will be sold to the group with the highest bid. Collect the group’s money and give them the corresponding question and answer envelope. Be sure they do not open the question and answer to see how much it is worth. They will do this at the end of the game.
  8. After all of the questions and answers have been sold, ask the groups to count all of their remaining money. Then, they will open each question and answer and add that to their total.
  9. The group with the highest amount of money at the end of the game is the winner!

Our Experience with the Game

Dustin used this game during a 7-hour English workshop with his wife, Grace. The students loved the game. It was the biggest hit of the 7-hour workshop. Grouping students in teams is a fun way to make the game more engaging and cooperative in the class. It also creates a strategic element that helps the more advanced students stay engaged with the game.

Be sure to listen to the episode to learn more about Dustin’s experience using this game in the classroom!


Original Inspiration for the Game: British Council
Other Grammar Auction Game from Google Search: Tekhnologic

Download our PowerPoint

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