ESL UNO Master Pack!

ESL UNO Master Pack!

8 Free ESL UNO Decks!

 
If you already know how to play ESL UNO scroll down to download our various ESL UNO vocabulary & grammar versions/decks! I will list the decks numbered 1-7 as well as as a blank template ESL UNO template below (just click on the image to download). Furthermore, at the end of this blog, I will give you some quick tips on how to play ESL UNO most effectively in your classroom. I'll also take a quick look at why ESL UNO Card Games and ESL card games, in general, are a legitimate and effective teaching tool so that any skeptical or concerned teachers that may be considering this type of resource can take a quicker measure of the value of making use of these types of resources. Lastly, I'll include a quick link to some of our other awesome ESL games like our SUPERHERO board game! Take a gander :)

How to play ESL UNO:

Goal: The goal of ESL UNO is to get rid of all your cards. The first player to get rid of all their cards wins!

Step # 1: make sure to shuffle your deck of UNO cards. I sometimes split the cards among the students to let them do some of the shuffling themselves.

Step # 2 deal 5 or 7 cards to each player. Deal 5 if you are looking to play a shorter game, and deal 7 if you are looking to play a longer game.

Step # 3: place the remainder of the cards face-down in the middle of the table (this will become the draw pile). Turn the top card over face-up next to draw pile.  The first player may go by playing a card that matches the number or color of the card that was turned over. As that player puts down their card, they must ask a question containing the target ESL vocabulary/grammar represented on the card to the player who is going next.  You can decide which player gets to start the game and go first through a method such as rock, scissors, paper.

Step # 4: The next player repeats this process by answering the question and then asking a question along with the card they play.  The first play to get rid of all their cards wins! If a player doesn’t have a card that matches the number or color of the card that was previously played, they must draw one card from the draw pile.  It is then the next player's turn. If a player has only one card remaining they must say “UNO” before playing their last card during their turn. If another player says “UNO” before that player, they must draw two cards from the draw pile.

Oh, and one last thing! Keep in mind that in ESL UNO there are various special cards that make this a great game to learn as they add a fun and dynamic aspect. Take a look and let's review them below!

The first one is a 'Draw 2' - this card means that the player whose turn is next loses their turn and must draw two cards from the draw pile.

The second card you can is the 'skip' card - this card means that the player whose turn is next loses their turn, and that is the following persons turn to go.

The third and fourth card you can see are the 'wild' and 'draw four' cards - the 'wild card' means that the student may change the color of play to any color they wish.  The 'draw four' card means that the student may change the color of play to any color they wish and that the player whose turn is next must draw four cards from the draw pile and loses a turn.

The last card you can see is the 'reverse' card - this card means that the direction of play has been reversed.  So for example, if play has been going clockwise it should now go counter-clockwise.

Let's take a look at some of the different versions of ESL card games we have available for you!

 UNO ESL Pack # 1: Food!


Here is our ESL-UNO food card deck!  You can use this to study whatever target language or grammar you wish, but we recommend using 'What's your favorite food/thing?'.  So for example, as a student plays a card they might say, "What's your favorite food?" As the next student goes they might respond, "My favorite food  is rice." Finally, as they play their card they get to ask the next student a question!

UNO ESL Pack # 2: At School

Here is our ESL UNO at school deck!  You can use this to study whatever target language or grammar you wish, but we recommend using 'What's this?/What's that?'.  So for example, as a student plays a card they might say, "What's this?" As the next student goes they might respond, "It's a book." Finally, as they play their card they get to ask the next student a question!



UNO ESL Pack # 3: Past Tense

Here is our ESL UNO Past Tense deck!  This version is a little more conversation based. I always try to engage my students regarding their life, so that they connect the English they are learning to their everyday lives. Accordingly, I also ask them about their previous week and what occurred. That's one of the most excellent ways to make English a living and decipherable subject for your students!

We recommend using 'Where did you go last weekend?/What did you last weekend?/What did you do last weekend?/What did you see last weekend?'.  So for example, as a student plays a card they might say, "What did you do last weekend?" As the next student goes they might respond, "I went to a restaurant." Finally, as they play their card they get to ask the next student a question!

UNO ESL Pack # 4: Animals

Here is our ESL UNO at school deck!  You can use this to study whatever target language or grammar you wish, but we recommend using 'Do you like...?'.  So for example, as a student plays a card they might say, "Do you like pandas?" As the next students go they might respond, "Yes, I do./No, I don't." Finally, as they play their card they get to ask the next student a question!

UNO ESL Pack # 5: Clothes

Here is our ESL UNO at school deck!  You can use this to study whatever target language or grammar you wish, but we recommend using 'What are you wearing?'.  So for example, as a student plays a card they might say, "What are you wearing?" As the next student goes they might respond, "I'm wearing a dress." Finally, as they play their card they get to ask the next student a question!

 

UNO ESL Pack # 6: At the house

Here is our ESL UNO at school deck!  You can use this to study whatever target language or grammar you wish, but we recommend using 'Do you have a ... ?'.  So for example, as a student plays a card they might say, "Do you have a sofa?" As the next student goes they might respond, "Yes, I do./No, I don't." Finally, as they play their card they get to ask the next student a question!

UNO ESL Pack # 7: Mythical Monsters

Here is our ESL UNO mythical monster deck!  You can use this to study whatever target language or grammar you wish, but we recommend using 'What do you think about...?'.  So for example, as a student plays a card they might say, "What do you think about unicorns?" As the next student goes they might respond, "I think they are cute." Finally, as they play their card they get to ask the next student a question!

4 Quick Tips

Alrighty, let me give you some quick tips for maximizing the effectiveness of these ESL activities in your classroom.

Quick Tip # 1:  Don't let your students use their native tongue while playing this game! Make a rule that if a student speaks a word in their native tongue that they must draw one card from the draw pile!

Quick Tip # 2:  After printing this deck of cards LAMINATE them. This turns a game which might be destroyed within a few times by a few careless students into a game that will stay in your teaching arsenal for the years to come!

Quick Tip # 3: Oftentimes the biggest hurdle you will encounter is that the students can't understand how to play the game, and you can't figure out how to explain it to them!  Accordingly, prepare in advance for this eventuality. Use 'Google Translate' or the app 'Papago' to help you translate the directions in advance, or be prepared to play a few practice rounds to help the students understand rather than giving lengthy or broken directions.

Quick Tip # 4: Designate a teacher helper to help you prep and began the game, and to help you clean up afterward.  Makes sure to have them help you gather up all the cards and place in the plastic bag or box so that they are safe and sound for the next time you want to use them. Designating a teacher helper is also one of the quickest ways to turn some of your troublesome students into some of the most helpful ones!

Why use ESL games in the classroom?

Lastly, let’s quickly tackle why ESL UNO Card Games are a legitimate and effective teaching tool for the skeptical or concerned teachers that may be considering this type of resource.  Importantly, there is no substitute for the efficiency in learning gained from keeping your students engaged. Consequently, if keeping your students engaged is important to you, then using games to learn and games in the classroom are a must for your teaching arsenal.  Firstly, these sorts of EFL card games reinforce the idea that the ESL English classroom is a fun and engaging place to learn the language. Secondly, they help build the relationship between you and the students by providing a student-centered learning setting rather than a teacher-centered learning setting. This sort of teaching entails less far less lecturing and far more teacher-led language practicing among the students.  Thirdly, and quite importantly, this allows this teacher to drill and reinforce learning because it involves a large degree of repetition and variation. Lastly, these sorts of games for ESL students allow the students to start to explore their ownership of the language in an interactive way, rather than reproducing the phrases and grammar they have been taught in a formalized setting.

There you have it! I’m gonna provide a few more related games for ESL students below in the case that you found our ESL game useful.

Other great ESL activities for the classroom

Foooooooooood.  Try out out our yummy recipe ESL game for building interesting, crazy, delicious or disgusting recipes! Clink on the link or image below.
https://halandsteveenglish.com/blogs/english-conversation-lesson-esl-efl/yummy-recipe-esl-game-master-pack



Or do you prefer ESL boardgames to ESL card games/EFL card games? Join our teacher's membership and gain access to allllll our ESL activities/EFL activities like our awesome ESL Superhero board game. I've included a quick intro below!


Board game directions

Setting up game board: Print the two pieces of paper which make up the game board and tape/stick them together. For the themed cards e.g. 'lose power crystals', print them double-sided with a front and back, cut them out and sort them according to their theme/color by placing them on their matching spaces on the board marked 'stack here'. Cut out several power crystal cards and make a power crystal card stack to distribute from, for example, 100 - 1 power crystals cards, 25 - 5 power crystals  cards, 25 - 10 power crystals cards, 20 - 20 power crystals cards, 10 - 50 power crystals cards, 10 - 100 power crystals cards.

Student set up:  Have students pick a character and give them their corresponding 'character sheet'. Have them follow/explain the directions on their character sheet by having them make their dice and game board marker.

Split the students into teams:  Students should play in teams of at least two.

Game board markers/starting the game:  Have the students place their board game markers on the start space on the game board. Since this is a classroom game, the teacher can choose who goes first through a method such as 'rock, paper, scissors' or by asking a question pertaining to English.

Moving around the board/drawing cards:   Students should roll their character dice. When students land on a space on the board they should draw the corresponding card (e.g. if they land on a black lose gems card space they should draw a black lose gems card. Students can collect power crystals by acting out the vocabulary word (charades) within the bubble-shaped picture on the card until their team member(s) call out that word. I recommend a time limit of around 1 minute for acting out the words. If their teammates are able to guess the word they may then refer to the card and collect the appropriate amount of power crystal cards or complete whatever task or prize is outlined on that particular card. If they are unable to guess the word, their turn is over and it is the next teams turn to roll their dice.

How to win the game/how to collect gems:  The student/team with the most power-crystals at the conclusion of the game/given period of time wins. Students can collect power crystals 2 ways: 1) by way of the cards on the board. 2) By way of passing 'start'. Every time they pass start they may collect 5 power crystals.

Still hungry for more? How about a new twist on Bingo? We've got you covered there too!

https://halandsteveenglish.com/blogs/english-conversation-lesson-esl-efl/bingo-with-some-twists-5-excellent-bingo-games


Until next time!

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