ESL Vocabulary Fortunes

ESL Vocabulary Fortunes is a great online ESL game designed for teens and adults. This game is based on the classic TV game show Family Feud or Family Fortunes in the UK. This Game is simple to play and a fantastic way to practice vocabulary on different topics and sure to entertain students at the end of a busy class.

There are two ways you can play ESL Vocabulary Fortunes.

Version 1 takes less time to organise and is how I use this game in class.
Age/Level: Teens and adults – Lower Intermediate and above
Time: 10 – 15 minutes per category ( 2 rounds per category)
Players: Teams of two or three depending on overall class size
Preparation: None! Just use the prepared online game below
Aim: To guess the top 5 answers in to the survey question.

  1. First, put students in to groups or 2/3/4 depending on class size.
  2. Show students the question for the topic you have selected.
  3. In their groups, students think of 2 or 3 words that may answer the question.
  4. Write the students answers on the board. To extend the activity with lower level students, ask them to spell their words or justify their answers if they are higher level students.
  5. When all the words are written on the board, reveal the actual answers for each question awarding points to the teams if they have a correct answer.

Version 2 follows the original TV format.
Age/Level: Teens and adults – Lower Intermediate and above
Time: 25 minutes
Players: 2 equal teams
Preparation: None! Just use the prepared online game below
Aim: To guess the top 5 answers in to the survey question.

  1. Separate the class into two equal teams and have them choose a team name.
  2. Each round begins with one member from each team coming to the front of the     classroom and trying to guess a top five answer to the question. The questions in the game are divided in main topics that students study throughout the year so you can use this game many times throughout the year.

  3. The first student to answer correctly with one of the answers to the question can choose for their team to play or pass and let the other team play. The teacher should look at the answers before class so that they know what the answers are.
  4. The aim of the game is for each team member to write down the same ‘blank’ word as their teammate at the front of the class.
  5. Everyone then secretly writes down their missing word. They do this without talking or communicating which makes this game more difficult.

  6. Then, the teacher asks each player at the front of the class to reveal their word.
  7. After that, each teammate says or shows the word they wrote.
  8. For every word that matches with their player at the front of the class, the teams gets the points displayed in the game.
  9. Finally, repeat with different players.

Want to play this game with young learners? Check out our newly released kids version of this game here!

More Online ESL Games
Discover more of ESL Kids Games’ online activities  .
Describe the photo – A great way to practice speaking about photos for B1 (PET).
ESL Play Your Cards Right – A fun higher or lower game.
ESL Countdown – A great game to practice vocabulary and spelling.
ESL Writing Prompt Generator – A fun way to practice writing with young learners and even teens.

Find more games and activities on our YouTube Channel

Music: 60’s Quiz Show by Podington Bear is licensed under a Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 International License.


  1. I used your game with some of my students yesterday and they loved it, but today I am trying to use it again and I can´t, I only see a blank square… Is there something I need to download or upgrade so I can use it again?
    Thanks a lot for your great ideas!!!

    • Hi Nora,
      I can confirm that the game is working correctly. There are a couple of things you can try. The first is open a private window (or incognito window on Chrome) and paste the url into the the address bar. The other thing to try is clearing your ‘Cache’ for cookies. Lastly, if this isn’t helping try a different browser. The game should work well with Chrome, Firefox and Safari. If the issues persists, please send me and email at [email protected] and tell me your browser and I’ll try and help further. All the best, David

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