“Find Someone Who” is a dynamic and engaging icebreaker activity widely used in language learning classrooms.
This game encourages students to mingle, ask questions, and engage in conversations, making it an excellent tool for practicing language skills in a social setting.
It’s particularly effective in new classes where students are just beginning to get acquainted with each other.
The activity fosters not just language development but also helps build a sense of community and collaboration among students.
ESL Icebreaker – Find Someone Who…
We have loads of icebreaker games here on the site for all ages, you can check out the full list for adults on the link directly below but we also have icebreakers for kindergarten, primary and high school here which you can check out as well.
(Of course you can adapt all of them for your classrooms and students as needed)
- Best ESL icebreaker games for Adults
- Best ESL icebreaker games for Primary School
- Best ESL icebreaker games for High School
- Best ESL icebreaker Games for Kindergarten
Gameplay Mechanics and Structure
The game starts with each student receiving a worksheet containing various criteria or statements, like “Find someone who has visited Paris” or “Find someone who can cook a traditional dish from their country.”
The students’ task is to mingle around the classroom and find classmates who satisfy these criteria.
Once they find a match, they engage in a brief conversation to learn more about that specific experience or skill, often leading to further discussions.
- Promotes Social Interaction: The game requires students to interact with their peers, fostering social skills alongside language development.
- Practices Question Formation: Students formulate questions to find out if their classmates meet the criteria on their worksheets, which is an excellent way for them to practice question structures in the target language.
- Enhances Listening and Speaking Skills: Through conversations, students get to practice both listening and speaking in a real-world context.
- Builds a Classroom Community: The activity encourages students to learn about each other’s backgrounds and experiences, promoting a sense of community.
- Adaptable to Various Language Levels: The game can be tailored to suit different proficiency levels by adjusting the complexity of the criteria and the expected depth of conversation.
- Encourages Cultural Exchange: In diverse classrooms, this activity becomes a platform for cultural exchange, enriching students’ understanding of different backgrounds.
Resources and Preparation
“Find Someone Who” is a low-resource, high-impact game:
- Worksheets with various criteria or statements, prepared in advance by the teacher.
- Writing utensils for students to note down the names of classmates who meet each criterion.
- Optional: A timer to add a sense of urgency and keep the activity energetic.
Tailoring the Game for Different Language Levels
The flexibility of “Find Someone Who” makes it suitable for all language levels:
- Beginner Level: Use simple, straightforward criteria that require basic language skills to discuss. Beginners might be given a list of sample questions to help them initiate conversations.
- Intermediate Level: Introduce more detailed criteria that require longer conversations and more complex language structures.
- Advanced Level: Challenge students with abstract or open-ended criteria that encourage in-depth discussions, allowing for the use of advanced vocabulary and nuanced language.
“Find Someone Who” is an exemplary language learning activity that perfectly combines linguistic practice with social interaction.
It breaks down barriers, encourages curiosity, and fosters a supportive and collaborative classroom environment.
This game is a testament to the effectiveness of learning through engagement and interaction, making it an essential component of any language learning curriculum.