The Grammar Wheel of Fortune‏‎

Lesson Plans & Activities

A roulette wheel.Traditional grammar classifies words based on eight parts of speech: verb, noun, pronoun, adjective, adverb, preposition, conjunction, and interjection.

Each part of speech explains not what the word is, but how the word is used. In fact, the same word can be a noun in one sentence and a verb or adjective in the next.

The “Grammar” Wheel of Fortune is a game to get students revise parts of speech. It is meant for adult students but there is no reason why it cannot be used with younger students.


Following the template of a common wheel of fortune, make a wheel out of cardboard; divide it into 8 slots and mark each one the parts of speech.

  • If you can get hold of a roulette wheel, even better! Party supplies shops are good places to find cheap lightweight plastic roulette wheels. Prepare sticky labels on which you will have written the parts of speech and use them to cover the numbered slots.

Make up a sentence (content and difficulty will vary according to the proficiency level of your students) and prepare an intriguing clue for it.

For example:


Worst Oscar nightmare for an actress …


… wearing the same dress as the presenter!

Parts of speech necessary

  • gerund (wearing)
  • article (the)
  • adjective (same)
  • noun (dress, presenter)
  • conjunction (as)

In Class

On the white/black board mark the exact spaces where the words that form your sentence will go.

-------  ---  ----  -----  --  ---  --------- 

To make it easier you can have an initial for each (or some) word.

w------  t--  s---  d----  a-  t--  p-------- 

Divide the class in 3 teams and get a student from each team to come up to the front of the class to play at the wheel. To establish who’s going to play first, second and third ask a question about a part of speech like: what’s an article? The first to answer correctly gets to have the first go at the wheel.

Once you are all set, provide the clue and get the first student to spin the wheel.

Every time the wheel stops on a part of speech the student playing will need to provide a brief explanation of that part of speech and then guess which word within that category would be appropriate.

The students has 20 seconds to consult with their team before giving the answer. If the answer is incorrect then the next student gets to spin the wheel, and so on.

Have a new set of 3 students play every time a sentence has been guessed.


Points are subtracted for any repetition or incorrect explanation of parts of speech. Extra points are awarded if the team can come up with the description of the type of sentence completed, in the example above: a depend clause.

The team who wins the most rounds wins!

Useful Links

Parts of Speech‏‎ in English Grammar – PoS explained.

Image © Phil Romans

Related Articles

6 Tips to Make your ESL Classes More Effective

Teaching is undeniably a challenging job, in fact many consider it one of the most difficult careers you could choose. Nevertheless, being a teacher is an enriching experience. Through quality education and effective teaching methodologies,...

read more

ICAL TEFL Resources

The ICAL TEFL site has thousands of pages of free TEFL resources for teachers and students. These include: The TEFL ICAL Grammar Guide. Country Guides for teaching around the world. How to find TEFL jobs. How to teach English. TEFL Lesson Plans....

read more