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ESL Icebreaker Games “Interview Time”

“Interview Time” is an interactive and insightful language learning activity that simulates real-life social interactions.

This exercise not only enhances language skills but also fosters interpersonal understanding and rapport among students.

By engaging in a role-playing interview, students practice a wide range of language competencies in a format that mimics actual conversational exchanges, making it an excellent tool for practical language application.

adult esl icebreaker games interview time

ESL Icebreaker – Interview Time

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)

How To Play Interview Time

In “Interview Time,” students pair up and interview each other using a set of predetermined or improvised questions. The questions can range from personal interests to hypothetical scenarios, depending on the lesson’s focus and the students’ language levels. After the interviews, each student introduces their partner to the rest of the class, summarizing what they have learned. This two-step process ensures that students practice both asking and answering questions, as well as summarizing and presenting information.

Educational Benefits

  1. Comprehensive Language Practice: The activity integrates various language skills, including question formation, listening, speaking, and summarizing.
  2. Enhances Conversational Skills: By simulating a real-life interview scenario, students practice natural and spontaneous language use.
  3. Encourages Active Listening: Students need to listen attentively to their partners’ answers to ask follow-up questions and summarize their responses accurately.
  4. Builds Rapport and Understanding: The activity helps students learn about each other, fostering a sense of community and mutual understanding in the classroom.
  5. Adaptable to Different Language Levels: The complexity of the questions and responses can be adjusted to suit various language proficiency levels.
  6. Practices Public Speaking: Presenting a summary of the interview to the class helps students build confidence in public speaking.
  7. Cultural Exchange and Empathy: In diverse classrooms, interviews often touch on cultural topics, promoting cross-cultural understanding and empathy.

Resources and Preparation

To conduct “Interview Time,” you’ll need:

  • A set of interview questions, which can be provided by the teacher or created by the students.
  • A space conducive to pairs having conversations without too much interference from others.
  • Optional: Recording devices for students to record their interviews for later review or assessment.

Tailoring for Different Language Levels

“Interview Time” can be easily adapted for students of varying language abilities:

  • Beginner Level: Use simple and direct questions. Beginners might benefit from a script or structured interview format to guide their conversation.
  • Intermediate Level: Encourage more open-ended questions that require detailed responses, allowing intermediate students to use a wider range of vocabulary and more complex sentence structures.
  • Advanced Level: Challenge advanced students with abstract, in-depth questions. Encourage them to use advanced grammar, idiomatic expressions, and to engage in more nuanced conversations.


“Interview Time” is an enriching and practical activity that effectively merges language learning with interpersonal communication. It prepares students for real-world interactions in the target language, enhancing their conversational skills in an engaging, informative, and enjoyable manner. This activity is a testament to the power of interactive learning in breaking down language barriers and fostering a connected and supportive learning environment.

I have been a teacher of English for over 15 years, in that time i made hundreds and thousands of resources and learnt so much i think its worth sharing. Hopefully to help teachers and parents around the world.

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