My top September game for re-starting with a class you’ve already taught is the Hammer Game.

It’s brilliant for figuring out how much they’veΒ forgottenΒ over the Summer holidays!

And if you’ve got a new class, then start off with the Genki Disco Warm Up and the full curriculum or have a look at my first lesson ideas page.

What are your favourite “starting new term” games & activites?

It would be great to share them in the comments!

Richard Graham

Hello, I'm Richard Graham. When I was a kid I found school to be sooooo boring... So I transformed my way of teaching. I listened to what the kids were really wanting to say and taught it in ways they really wanted to learn. The results were magical. Now I help teachers just like you teach amazing lessons and double your incomes!

9 Responses to “The Hammer Game”

  1. Jaynie

    I really do love the hammer game.I use it alot with 6th graders for quick review especially after winter break.Try it everyone!

  2. Jaynie

    I tried the POP game by Mido Farid, with the 5th graders yesterday,it went down very well.And they are a difficult group to please! I used it as a review game. Thanks Mido and Richard πŸ™‚

  3. Lines

    I finished last year school with jobs, so I’m going to begin with them.
    What do you want to be? PASS THE BAG
    I put different pictures of jobs in a bag.
    Pupils sit down in a circle.
    Each child asks to the one who is next to him What do you want to be when you grow up and pass the bag.
    The student next pick up a picture from the bag and say: I want to be a… ( the picture job).
    When everyone has his/her own job, I say them and when they listen their job, they have to stand up. We sing GENKI ENGLISH song “WHAT DO YOU WANT TO BE?” and then with the karaoke version, they have to sing their jobs individualy.(My pupils are going to be the same than last year)

    Then, I put all the picture book of genki english about jobs on my desk, but without the name of job, only … because I like eating cakes.
    Each child stand up, pick up one and compleate the sentence: I want to be a cook because I like to eat cakes, or I want to be a baker because I like…

    Thank you very much for been allways there.

  4. Mark Amstrong

    I had a fantastic reaction to this game with my elementary school students. There were shudders and laughs throughout the class, every time the squishy hammer came down on someone’s head.

  5. Caroline Kido

    Hi, i love this game, but i had to adapt it to suit my “small” class. This idea works well in general actually no matter how many people play. I found that games that say “you are out” meaning kids have to sit out the game, a little hard to work around because kids would be left out the game which is boring and they tend to act up if they are left out, and since i have only 2 students in one of my classes, i decided that they could play off agaisnt each other, same rules as above, however i tweaked it, by making copies of “hammer” cards which i found on yahoo images, and i would give this card to the one who either stutters or repeats or just doesnt`t have any answere, and the student with the least cards would be the winner. If the student with the most cards feels bad about it, you could always flash them a card (any topic), ask them what it is, and if they get it right they have a chance to give the cards back to the teacher. Just an extra idea for those “sensative ones” However if i had more students i would use the above game, because i know the kids love it.

  6. richard

    Hi Caroline,

    Actually this game was originally ( in the TV version!) for just two kids!

    For larger classes the rule is that the kids who are “out” become the new referees, making sure the ones still playing don’t cheat. They take this *very* seriously, plus of course it’s great listening practice for them!

  7. Margit

    as it seems hot, one more idea (I’m into linking things!):

    When I hit one kid with the hammer I hit whichever body part, all the other kids ask the kid who’s been hit: “Are you okay”, and he/she answers: “No I’m not, my… hurts”, the one who will come next to that kid touches her/him slightly and again asks “Are you okay?”
    “Yes I’m okay.”
    This way everybody is involved. I’m playing this with 4 kids.

    I also like Caroline’s card idea.

  8. Caroline Kido

    yes, actually i remember that tv show,,haha, it was whacky. Its great how we can use this ame for both small classes and large. I tried it today with my son and he was upset that he had 3 hammer cards and his friend only had 1, so i flashed some food cards and he got all right and handed the cards back to me, he seemed pretty satisfied,,lol. Oh and i also likeMargits idea too!!! i want to try that next time! thanks!

  9. Chris Cooper

    I remember this game on TV when I was a kid and I love playing it as a warm up / review. I usually play the Genki English version, but have recently started playing a team version too.

    I still have two lines, but instead of the front two kids playing, everyone plays in turn. For example, the first kid in team A goes first, then the first kid in team B, 2nd kid team A, 2nd kid team B, 3rd kid team A, 3rd kid team B, etc.

    Same rules, keep playing until one team is out or for a set time and count up the kids on each team at the end.

    I like both versions of the game, but the good thing about this one is all of the kids really listen to the previous responses…or they will be out for repeating!

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