Translation Games Your Kids Must Play
By: Shahzad Bashir
Playing games in the classroom is an excellent way to get acquainted with foreign languages while exploring another language's cultures and linguistic nuances. Perhaps this is why schools and educational institutions promote translation games worldwide. Playing such games is a fun way to improve language skills.
Let us take a look at some of the translation games your kids must play to hone their language and communication skills.
Translation Games for your Kids
Table of Content
Scrabble is widely played and one of the most popular choices in board games that are played across the world. A new language is easy to learn and practice with this board game which uses tiles to make words.
Scrabble is a popular choice due to the extraordinary vocabulary build-up skills that it delivers, allowing its players to sharpen their vocabulary in other languages. Although it might be tough at first, it will get easier as a person’s vocabulary builds up.
Scrabble is not just available in the English language, as there are some foreign-language Scrabble that is also widely played, such as Spanish Scrabble. Other than this, teachers can also design their own versions of Scrabble by using the Scrabble letter distributions and point values in other languages.
Hangman is a popular word game that has been around for ages, especially during times when there were no cell phones to keep children busy. Nevertheless, the simplicity of this game has helped it to still stay popular among children and adults alike.
All you have to do is to guess a mystery word or a phrase that another person has thought about by guessing the letters in that word. If the letters are wrong, the other person will keep adding to the Hangman figure till it is completed. You lose if you are unable to guess the whole word before the Hangman figure is completed.
To make this game interesting to play from a language perspective, you can introduce some changes to it. Instead of guessing words at random, you can define certain categories for words.
For example, you can tell the other person to guess the translation of a certain word and use it to add to the Hangman figure. Doing so will allow kids to widen their translation vocabulary in other languages while allowing them to enjoy the game without the use of technology.
Charades, more popularly known as two-word charades is an interesting game that contains words belonging to a certain language or category. It involves mixing two words together to make up words that another person or team has to guess.
For example, you can combine adjectives with animal names, so you get words such as “small monkey” and “fat hen”. Specify these categories before starting this game in front of the children.
To play this game, it is preferable to divide children into two groups and write words on pieces of paper and throw them in a container. Each group will have to send a representative who will act out the words one at a time.
They are not allowed to talk, only to act out the words so that the other team guesses them. Each team gets 90 seconds or so to guess the mystery phrases. If they fail, the other group will have 30 seconds to guess the words. The team with the most points wins and can use this win to start the next round by making new word categories.
Scattergories is another interesting language that helps children learn and get acquainted with new languages other than their own native languages. It also works in a wide variety and a number of languages.
The main goal of this game is to come up with as many words as possible starting with a specific letter, and these words have to fall under one of the 12 categories such as “fruits”, “vegetables”, or “animals”.
You can play this interesting game your way by developing your own version in your language. All you need is a list of categories and a way to pick up the letters to start each round. Scattergories allow an excellent opportunity to name and define vocabulary in another language, especially for children. You can make children learn new words in another language by asking them to translate words into a category. The kid who translates words correctly gets more points.
Second Language Mad Libs
When you are stuck indoors with your family and cannot find a way to pass time, Second Language Mad Libs is an ideal game that can help you to learn new languages and hone your vocabulary.
Second Language Mad Libs involves writing short stories in a second language with blanks in between for certain keywords. The participating children will have to contribute words to fill up the blanks, but without reading the story.
Instead, they will only be allowed to know the categories to which the missing words belong–such as nouns, adjectives, or adverbs. After the blanks are filled in, you can read the whole story to the kids and have fun while doing so!
Truth or Lie
Truth or lie is a great game if you are looking to have a fun time with your kids while promoting and encouraging them to learn a new language and expand their vocabulary. The concept of Truth or Lie is simple–all you need to do is to write down two statements about yourself and your family members will do the same.
These statements will be in another language you are trying to learn, and one of these statements will be true, while the other will be false.
After you read out your statements, the other family members will question you about the truth of the statements in another language. If they uncover the truth, they will win. However, if you succeed in tricking them to believe the lie, you will win.
This game is ideal for playing with children who can write and speak well in a second language and who can also make sentences in their own second language.
Double Treasure Hunt
Tired of sitting bored around and looking for some fun games to engage the children? If so, Double Treasure Hunt is an ideal game for you. To prepare this game, write the names of everyday objects that you have around the house in the language you are trying to make your children fluent in.
Hide the pieces of paper around the house and let the hunt begin. Set a timer for the kids to find all the hidden pieces of paper.
This is where the second part of the game comes into play. Once the children have found all the papers, it is time for them to open them up and read them.
Next, they need to find each object named in the second language and put them in their “treasure basket”. You can again use a timer to get the kids moving fast into action for searching the objects.
The winner will be the one who finds the most objects. Have a bonus prize ready for the winner to encourage them to play more of this interesting game.
Now that you know some of the most interesting language games that you can use to hone and sharpen your kids’ language and translation skills, it is time to get your creative muscles up and working. You can introduce new games of your own to make kids learn new words in another language.
Encouraging them to learn new vocabulary in other languages is likely to help them in communicating with people of other languages and countries easily while allowing them to be more confident about their own language skills and to practice these skills in their future endeavors.