Updated: May 5, 2019
Speech games are the best way to get kids excited about public speaking. The kids are having so much fun, they don't even realize they are talking in front of an audience. Keys to making the games fun are to demonstrate the game so everyone understands the rules, and switch games when the students get restless. Also, decrease anxiety by asking for volunteers to lead the first activity, and if the group is large, break into smaller groups. Most important, at the end of each game, provide positive feedback and ask the students what skills they learned.
1) Spot my Lie: a student volunteer stands in front of the class and tells 2 truths and a lie about themselves and the class guesses the lie.
2) Dragon’s Den: give students an ordinary object, the presenting student pretends they invented it and they are trying to sell it on Dragon’s Den. There are three Dragons that ask questions and bid on the product.
3) The Cooperation Game: have 3 students come up and tell a story, but each person can only say one phrase of the story and the story must end with a pre-determined ending: “...and then the rabbit laid an egg.”
4) The Noun Game: have the class call out 3 random nouns and the speaker has 1-minute to tell a story that connects all three nouns.
5) Tongue Twister: students invent a tongue twister and write it down on a piece of paper. The speaker picks from a box of the twisters and must recite the written phrase three times without stumbling over any words.
6) Balderdash: students create crazy made-up words and put them in a box. The speaker picks a word and must define the word for the class and use it in a sentence.
ex. Coxswaddle (noun): a strap used to keep an ox secured to a cart. "The ox struggled against the cart's leather coxswaddle."
7) The Job Interview: a pair of students conduct a job interview. The interview is for an unusual job made-up by the interviewer.
“I see you have applied to work as a dog-barker at our security firm. You would be required to bark when home alarms are triggered. What qualifications do you have for this job?”
8) Super Spies: The students are all part of the Government’s Intelligence Team. They have arrived for a debrief session where each super spy explains how they used an object in the room to save a life, save the country or catch a criminal. “There I was in Nike, staring at my arch nemesis the Green Gobber. He was up to his old tricks, trying to steal the latest Kyrie basketball shoes. He escaped my clutches twice in the past, but this time would be different. I grabbed a stapler and stapled his two-tone shoelaces to the linoleum floor. The police found him crying under a fort of runners."
9) The Crazy Story: the teacher starts a story, "Two friends decided to set up for a night of camping in their backyard..." and each student adds to it. The last student must end the story.
10) Quill Story that Never Ends: as above, but substitute the word "Quill" for every personal pronoun (he, she, me, I, him, her, his). If you mess up, you must sit down. The game continues until there is one student left. "After grabbing the money, Quill leaped into the getaway car."
11) My Fictional Friend: A pair of students come up and introduce each other, but the introduction is completely fictional: “Hi, I would like to introduce my friend Bruce who plays triple-A hockey and enjoys ballet dancing. His favourite food is raw octopus, and he wants to work in an elephant sanctuary when he grows up.”
12) The Movie: the speaker tells a story while the class acts it out. The speaker must keep their hands behind their back and not do any actions. “When I walked into the store, I was shocked to see wall to wall hula hoops. Of course, I immediately put one on and started hooping…”