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Idiom Game: How Well Do You Know These Common Expressions?

How to Play Idiom Games and Why They Are Beneficial

Do you want to learn English in a fun and engaging way? Do you want to sound more natural and fluent when you speak or write in English? Do you want to spice up your language with colorful expressions that native speakers use all the time? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you should try playing idiom games!

idiom game

An idiom game is a game that involves learning and practicing idioms, which are expressions that have a different meaning from the literal meaning of the words. For example, if someone says "it's raining cats and dogs", they don't mean that animals are falling from the sky, but that it's raining very heavily. Idioms are very common in everyday speech and writing, and they can make your language more colorful and natural. However, idioms can also be challenging to understand and use correctly, especially for learners of English as a second or foreign language. That's why playing idiom games can help you improve your vocabulary, comprehension, and communication skills.

In this article, I will show you how to play idiom games and why they are beneficial for learning English. I will also give you some tips on how to learn idioms effectively and enjoyably. By the end of this article, you will be able to play idiom games with confidence and have fun while learning English.

What Are Idioms?

An idiom is an expression that has a different meaning from the literal meaning of the words. For example, if someone says "you hit the nail on the head", they don't mean that you literally hit a nail with a hammer, but that you said or did something exactly right. Idioms are often based on metaphors, comparisons, or cultural references that may not make sense to someone who is not familiar with them.

There are thousands of idioms in English, and they can vary depending on the region, country, or context. Some idioms are very common and widely used, while others are more rare or specific. Some idioms are informal and colloquial, while others are formal and polite. Some idioms are positive and complimentary, while others are negative and insulting. Some idioms are literal and straightforward, while others are figurative and sarcastic.

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Because idioms have different meanings from the literal meanings of the words, they can be confusing or misleading for learners of English. For example, if someone says "break a leg" to you before a performance, they don't mean that they want you to get injured, but that they wish you good luck. If you don't know the meaning of this idiom, you might think that they are being rude or mean to you. Therefore, it is important to learn idioms and their meanings in order to understand and communicate in English better.

How to Learn Idioms


One of the best ways to learn idioms is to expose yourself to them through listening, reading, speaking, and writing. By exposing yourself to idioms in different sources and contexts, you can learn how they are used in real situations and by native speakers. You can also learn the tone, mood, and intention behind the use of idioms.

Some tips on how to expose yourself to idioms are:

  • Listen to podcasts, radio shows, songs, movies, TV shows, or videos that use idioms. Pay attention to how the speakers use idioms and what they mean by them.

  • Read books, magazines, newspapers, blogs, social media posts, or comics that use idioms. Look for clues from the text or images that can help you infer the meaning of idioms.

  • Speak with native speakers or other learners of English who use idioms. Ask them to explain the meaning of idioms or give you examples of how to use them.

  • Write sentences, paragraphs, stories, or essays that use idioms. Try to use idioms that are appropriate for the topic, audience, and purpose of your writing.


Another way to learn idioms is to explain them through dictionaries, websites, teachers, or native speakers. By explaining idioms through these sources, you can clarify the meaning and usage of idioms. You can also learn the origin, history, or culture behind the use of idioms.

Some tips on how to explain idioms are:

  • Use online dictionaries or websites that specialize in idioms. These sources can provide you with definitions, examples, synonyms, antonyms, or related idioms for each idiom.

  • Use online search engines or social media platforms to find out how other people use or explain idioms. You can also join online forums or groups that discuss idioms or answer questions about them.

  • Ask your teacher or a native speaker to explain the meaning or usage of an idiom that you don't understand or want to learn more about. You can also ask them to correct your mistakes or give you feedback on your use of idioms.


The final way to learn idioms is to practice them through exercises, quizzes, games, or activities. By practicing idioms through these methods, you can apply and reinforce your knowledge of idioms. You can also test your understanding and recall of idioms and learn from your mistakes or gaps.

Some tips on how to practice idioms are:

  • Do online exercises or quizzes that test your knowledge of idioms. These sources can provide you with multiple-choice, fill-in-the-blank, matching, or ordering questions that challenge your ability to recognize, complete, or use idioms.

  • Play online or offline games that involve idioms. These sources can provide you with fun and interactive ways to learn and practice idioms, such as crossword puzzles, word searches, bingo, hangman, etc.

  • Create your own activities that use idioms. These sources can provide you with creative and personalized ways to learn and practice idioms, such as making flashcards, writing sentences, drawing pictures, acting out scenarios, etc.

How to Play Idiom Games

Types of Idiom Games

There are many types of idiom games that you can play online or offline, depending on your preference, level, and goal. Here are some examples of idiom games that you can try:





A game that involves matching the idiom with its meaning or an example sentence.


A game that involves guessing the idiom from a definition, a picture, or a hint.

Completing sentences

A game that involves completing a sentence with the correct idiom or part of an idiom.

Creating stories

A game that involves creating a story that uses as many idioms as possible.

Benefits of Idiom Games

Playing idiom games can have many benefits for learners of English, such as:

  • Increasing motivation: Idiom games can make learning idioms more fun and enjoyable, which can motivate learners to keep learning and playing.

  • Enhancing memory: Idiom games can help learners remember idioms better by using repetition, association, visualization, or context clues.

  • Improving fluency: Idiom games can help learners use idioms more naturally and confidently by providing them with opportunities to practice and review idioms in different situations and purposes.

  • Expanding vocabulary: Idiom games can help learners learn new words and expressions by exposing them to idioms that they may not encounter in other sources or contexts.

Tips for Playing Idiom Games

To play idiom games effectively and enjoyably, here are some tips that you can follow:

  • Set goals: Before playing an idiom game, set a clear and realistic goal for yourself, such as how many idioms you want to learn or practice, how long you want to play, or what level of difficulty you want to choose.

  • Choose relevant idioms: When playing an idiom game, choose idioms that are relevant to your interests, needs, or goals. For example, if you want to learn idioms related to business, play a game that focuses on business idioms.

  • Review feedback: After playing an idiom game, review the feedback that the game provides you with. For example, if you made a mistake or missed an answer, check the correct answer and explanation. If you did well or learned something new, congratulate yourself and note down the idiom for future reference.

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