Do you want some fresh, new ideas for singular and plural nouns? Then you’ll definitely want to check out these plural noun games and singular noun activities, along with worksheets, lesson plans, online practice resources and more.
ESL Singular and Plural Noun Activities and Games
Without further ado, let’s get into the best singular plural nouns games and activities that you can try out with your English learners today.
#1: Plural Nouns Crossword
One of the best activities for plural nouns is to make up a crossword puzzle. My go-to resource is Discovery.com’s Puzzlemaker. Use the singular noun for the clues but the plural noun in the answers. Yes, it really is that easy!
#2: Concentration ESL Memory Game
If you’re teaching absolute beginners about singular and plural nouns for the first time, then you may want to consider trying out concentration. The way it works is that you make matching cards with the singular and then the plural version of the same word.
In groups of 4, students mix them up and place them face down on the desk. Then, they take turns picking two cards to see if they match. Find out how to set it up and play this ESL memory game here:
#3: Dictogloss Singular and Plural Noun Game
If you want to challenge the listening skills of your students, then consider trying out Dictogloss. Besides listening, you can choose to focus on either speaking or writing.
The way it works is that you find (or write) a passage filled with the target vocabulary. In this case, it might have lots of plural nouns for example. Then, put students into pairs and read it out at a faster than normal pace. Students take notes on what they’ve heard and try to recreate it by either speaking or writing. Read it again and students add to what they have. Finally, they can compare their version with the original.
Do you want to try it out with your students? Find out all the details you need to know here: Dictogloss.
- Amazon Kindle Edition
- Bolen, Jackie (Author)
- English (Publication Language)
- 110 Pages - 06/05/2020 (Publication Date)
#4: Flashcard Sentences
If you teach beginners, then consider bringing some flashcards to class with you. In my opinion, they are one of the most under-utilized teaching resources out there! In this case, have a mix of singular nouns and plural nouns. Then, show each student a card and they have to make a sentence.
That’s just one very simple example, but there are lots of other games you could consider too. Here are some of my favourites: ESL Flashcard Games.
#5: Singular and Plural Noun Videos
Sometimes I get the feeling that my students are tired of hearing me talk! Is that the case for you? Yes? Well, then you might consider using some videos in your class instead of lecturing all the time. In this case, there are a ton of excellent videos to teach singular plural nouns. Have a look on YouTube for so many good ones to choose from.
#6: Proof-Reading and Editing
It’s often not until students see something in writing, or have to write it themselves that they get a grasp on it. In this case, one activity I like to use to reinforce key grammatical concepts is proofreading.
For beginners, make a passage or dialogue filled with errors that are related to a certain topic. In this case, the errors would be related to plural or singular nouns. More advanced students can often handle a wider variety of errors, from spelling to grammar and punctuation.
Students have to correct the passage and I usually tell them how many mistakes they can expect to find. Do you want to give it a try with your English learners? Find out more here: ESL Proofreading Activity.
#7: Picture Prompt ESL Warmer
One easy, fun way to introduce singular and plural nouns is to use a picture filled with lots of interesting things. Then, elicit from the students what they see. They may say dog. If there’s more than one dog, ask how many. The students may say two dog. Then, you could correct them and say two dogs?
See where I’m going with this? It’s kind of the ultimate way to introduce plural nouns to beginners. More recommendations here:
- Amazon Kindle Edition
- Bolen, Jackie (Author)
- English (Publication Language)
- 85 Pages - 02/02/2020 (Publication Date)
#8: Clothing + Plural and Singular Nouns
The clothes unit is definitely one that lends itself well to singular and plural. For example, we always say pair of pants, instead of pant. Or, a glove vs. gloves.
For some of the best ideas on how to teach about clothing, you’ll want to take a look at the following resource: ESL Clothing Activities and Games.
#9: Singular and Plural Nouns Songs
If you teach kids, consider incorporating some songs and chants into your lesson. Not great at singing? Don’t worry about it. There are a million and one resources on YouTube for just about any topic or grammar point, including plural nouns.
#10: Whiteboard Games and Activities
I’m not sure why, but students seem to love writing on the whiteboard! Take advantage of this because there are a ton of fun relay type ESL games that you can play. And, many of them work very well with teaching plural nouns. One simple game is to say the singular noun of something and students have to race to write the correct plural form.
There are way more ideas here: ESL Whiteboard Games.
#11: Is that Sentence Correct?
I love to use this simple warm-up activity in the next class after I’ve taught singular and plural nouns. The way it works is that you write some sentences on the whiteboard. Some are correct while others are not. Students have to choose the incorrect ones and then fix them.
More details about this error correction activity here: Is that Sentence Correct?
#12: Brochure Scanning
A quick reading activity that you can use to introduce plural and singular nouns is brochure scanning. Find a brochure or menu of some kind. Then, have students quickly scan through it and make a list of 5-10 (depends on the length of the brochure) singular nouns and then the same amount of plural nouns.
Find out more details here: ESL Scanning Activity.
#13: Hot Potato
Try out hot potato, a fun singular and plural noun game with your students:
#14: Quantifiers and Singular/Plural Nouns
Quantifiers like some, any, much, many are a natural fit with singular and plural nouns and they’re in fact often taught together in many ESL textbooks. If you want some of the best ideas for teaching about quantifiers, then you’ll want to check this out:
#15: Countable and Uncountable Noun Activities
Singular and plural nouns are closely related to countable and uncountable nouns. For example, uncountable nouns like pollution or air will never be made plural.
For some of the best ideas for these kinds of nouns, you’ll want to take a look at this:
#16: Body Parts and Singular/Plural Nouns
Body parts is another one of those topics that is often combined with plural and singular nouns. Things like legs, fingers, toes, etc. lend themselves very well to making plurals.
Do you want to see some of our top ideas for this unit? Then you’ll want to check out the following:
#17: ESL Conversation Lesson
It’s easy to plan an English convo lesson about just about anything, including singular/plural nouns. Follow these simple steps:
#18: The Memory Circle
A fun memory game to help your students out with plural nouns is this memory circle game. Give students a topic. Animals for example. Then, the first student makes a sentence using a plural noun: I have 2 dogs.
The next student has to say that first sentence and then add their own. He has 2 dogs and there are 6 elephants at the zoo. The game continues on until someone can’t remember something. They are out and the game continues on until the last person is left standing. I recommend that the teacher take notes about the additions unless you have a freakishly good memory!
#19: ESL Vocabulary Auction
Although this ESL vocabulary and sentence-building game does require a bit of prep, I find that it’s totally worth it. In this case, you’d want to make some sentences with both plural and singular nouns. Then, cut up the sentences into words and students have to bid on words that they think can help them form the maximum amount of sentences. After that, there’s some trading time with other teams.
Finally, students make sentences and the team who can make the most is the winner. Do you want to try it out? See more details here: ESL Vocabulary Auction.
#20: Dialogue Substitution
#21: Eliciting Singular and Plural Noun Activity
Unless you’re teaching absolute beginners, it’s likely that your students already know a fair amount about how to make singular nouns plural. If this is the case, I like to elicit some information from my students about how to do this.
Doing this serves two purposes. The first is that it’s easy to see what my students already know and also where their knowledge gaps are so that I can target my lesson more appropriately to that. Secondly, it helps to activate the students’ prior knowledge so that it’s easier for them to retain the new information. Find out how to do it here:
#22: Dictation, a Singular and Plural Nouns Activity
Dictation has kind of fallen out of favour these days as the more communicative style of teaching is all the rage. However, it can still be quite a valuable exercise.
In this case, say a sentence that has either singular or plural nouns or both. Students have to write down what they hear, using correct punctuation and spelling. Check the answers together with the class.
#23: Running Dictation
Check out this singular and plural noun game for all ages.
#24: There Is/There Are Activities
There is and there are, along with singular and plural nouns. They are like 4 peas in a pod and can’t really be separated! Have a look here at some of my top ideas for practicing them:
#25: Find the Plural
Give students a worksheet or handout with sentences that contain singular nouns. Instruct them to identify the singular noun in each sentence and then rewrite the sentence using the corresponding plural noun. This activity reinforces the concept of changing nouns from singular to plural in context.
#26: Noun Hunt
Have students search for examples of singular and plural nouns in authentic texts such as newspapers, magazines, or books. They can underline or highlight the nouns they find and create a list of singular and plural pairs. Afterwards, they can discuss their findings and share their lists with the class.
#27: Plural Puppet Show
Divide students into small groups and provide them with craft materials to create puppets. Each group selects a singular noun and creates a puppet representing that noun. They then develop a short skit or dialogue in which the singular noun becomes plural. Encourage students to use the plural form of the noun correctly in their puppet shows.
#28: Board Game
Create a board game where students move around the board by correctly identifying singular and plural nouns. Each time a student lands on a space, they must say the plural form of a given singular noun or vice versa. Use colorful visuals and provide clear instructions to make the game enjoyable and educational.
#29: Online Quizzes and Interactive Games
Utilize online resources such as ESL websites or apps that offer interactive quizzes and games specifically designed to teach singular and plural nouns. These activities can provide additional reinforcement and practice in an engaging digital format.
#30: Singular or Plural Toss
Create two baskets or containers labeled “Singular” and “Plural.” Prepare a collection of noun cards, each with a singular or plural noun written on it. Students take turns selecting a card and deciding whether it is a singular or plural noun. They must then toss the card into the corresponding basket. Discuss and correct any incorrect choices.
#31: Collective Nouns
Collective nouns can be a little bit tricky for students. Have a look at this list:
Did you Like these Plural Activities for ESL?
- Amazon Kindle Edition
- Bolen, Jackie (Author)
- English (Publication Language)
- 87 Pages - 10/24/2019 (Publication Date)
Yes? Thought so. Then you’re going to love this book over on Amazon: 39 No-Prep/Low-Prep ESL Grammar Activities and Games. The key to better English class is a wide variety of interesting and engaging games and activities and this book will help you do that in style.
You can get these ESL grammar activities book in both digital and print formats. Keep a copy on the bookshelf in your office and use it as a handy reference guide when making your lesson plans. Or, take the digital copy with you on your phone to your favourite coffee shop for some serious lesson planning on the go.
Yes, it really is that easy! Check out the book for yourself on Amazon, but only if you want a serious dose of ESL teaching awesome in your life:
Singular and Plural Nouns ESL Lesson Plans
Are you a busy teacher who doesn’t have time to always plan lessons? Then we have some good news for you! There are a ton of excellent singular and plural lesson plans that you can just print off and use. Here are some of the best resources out there:
Plural and Singular Worksheets
Why reinvent the wheel if you don’t have to, right? The better idea is to borrow some ideas from teachers who’ve gone before you. In this case, there are lots of great worksheets to help your students practice plural nouns and singular nouns. Here are some of our top picks:
Online Practice for Plural and Singular Nouns
If your students need a little bit more practice with plural and singular, then you may want to recommend some of the following online practice resources:
Singular and Plural Noun FAQS
There are a number of common questions that people have about these kinds of nouns. Here are the answers to some of the most popular ones.
What is a singular and plural noun?
A singular noun is one person, place, thing or idea. A plural noun is more than one of these things. There are a few specific rules to remember to make singular nouns plural.
How do you teach singular nouns to plural?
Here are a few hints to teach students how to make singular nouns into their plural form:
- The spelling of the singular nouns will be your guide as to how to form the plural.
- Add s/es to the end of most singular nouns to make them plural.
- There are some exceptions (foot—>feet, mice—>mouse, half—>halves).
- Some nouns the same for both singular and plural (deer).
How to teach singular plural nouns ESL?
To teach singular and plural nouns to ESL students, first show them the forms and rules for making plurals, along with a few exceptions. Then, use a variety of interactive and student-centred ESL games and activities for students to get some practice, including running dictation, dictogloss, videos, reading and listening passages, concentration, flashcard games, and more.
How do you make a noun plural?
In English, most nouns become plural by adding “-s” or “-es” to the singular form. For example, “cat” becomes “cats,” and “box” becomes “boxes.”
Are there any irregular plural nouns?
Yes, there are some irregular plural nouns that do not follow the typical “-s” or “-es” rule. Examples include “child” (children), “man” (men), and “mouse” (mice).
What are some common mistakes learners make when using plural nouns?
Some common mistakes include forgetting to add “-s” or “-es” to make a noun plural, or adding “-s” to a noun that is already plural, like saying “childs” instead of “children.”
How can I help my students understand th concept of singular and plural nouns?
Engage students in hands-on activities, use visual aids, and provide plenty of examples. Encourage practice through speaking, writing, and interactive exercises.
Have your say about these Singular and Plural Activities
What’s your top pick for activities to teach singular and plural nouns? Is it one of them from this list or do you have another that you’d like to recommend? Leave a comment below and let us know what you think. We’d love to hear from you.
Also be sure to give this article a share on Facebook, Pinterest, or Twitter. It’ll help other busy English teachers, like yourself find this useful teaching resource.
Last update on 2022-07-17 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API