7 Starter Activities for #PGCE or a #NQT by @richardjarogers

Starter activities have long been a cornerstone of effective classroom management as they get students focused and on task as soon as they enter the classroom, and they can be a great way to ‘prime’ the kids to learn complex concepts. What follows now are a list of my top seven starter activities that are quick, simple, require minimal equipment and are fun.

This is a re-blog post originally posted by Richard James Rogers and published with kind permission.

The original post can be found here.

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#1: Splat

This quick game is so easy: all you need is a whiteboard, whiteboard markers and class of kids. It’s a great game for consolidating key vocabulary, and is perfect for E.A.L. learners.




#2 Mystery Word

Another easy game. This time, students randomly pick out written words from a hat (or cup, beaker, container, etc.), and then they have to explain their word to the class (without saying the word). The students who are listening have to guess what the word is.

Mystery word


#3 The Poster Game

Possibly the most fun and competitive game I’ve ever invented for teaching new content. You’ll need space for the kids to walk/run, and the game does take some prep. However, once you (and your students) become used to playing this game you’ll find that it’s a doddle to set up in no time at all.

Poster game page 1poster game page 2Poster game page 3

#4 Who am I?

A very simple game. All you need are post-it notes and a class full of energized students! Great fun. Perfect for reinforcing key vocabulary and concepts.

Who am I


# 5 Bingo

Got some equation symbols or mathematical problems to teach your kids? Perhaps the symbols of the periodic table is more your thing? Whatever it is, this simple game can be adapted to suit any subject.


# 6 Vocabulary Musical Chairs

You’ll need a good rapport with you kids to use this one, as it needs to be controlled really well by the teacher (e.g. to avoid kids bumping into each other). However, it is simple, fun and worth the effort!

Vocabulary musical chair

# 7 Mystery Picture

This one takes some imagination on the part of the teacher, and some training of the kids beforehand. However, it’s really, really good for encouraging higher order thinking skills.

Mystery pictures


Images in this article were created by Pop Sutthiya Lertyongphati (a former student of mine, and a key illustrator in my book). You can e-mail her atpopslittlespace@gmail.com if you’d like her to do some beautiful illustration work for you!

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