English games for Key Stage 3 (KS3)

KS3 English classroom reading literature

Published: February 1st, 2022

Key Stage 3 is when many children improve upon their existing critical thinking skills and other English knowledge they gained during KS2. At 11-14 years old, children are starting to learn about themselves, the world around them, and how they communicate with each other, and English taught at this level aims to nurture and encourage these developments.

More specifically, at this point in the National Curriculum,  students will be improving their reading, written and verbal skills by reading some of the biggest plays and books in the English language. This includes their first look at Shakespeare and other seminal texts. They’ll also be expected to apply critical thinking to both books and poetry, which can be made more interesting with games on ActivPanel interactive displays.

Our ultimate list of English games for KS3 will give you great games and resources to use in your future lessons plans. Suppose you’re looking for inspiration for other subjects. In that case, we also have a resource of classroom games for KS3 that provides interactive games and activities for other core subjects in the curriculum.

What is taught at KS3 English?

Key Stage 3 covers the first three years of secondary school when children are  between 11 and 14 years old. The curriculum’s main aim at this stage is to promote high English language and literacy standards by supplying students with the skills to master a command of the spoken and written word. At this age, students are also encouraged to develop their love of literature through the teachings of Shakespeare and poetry.

What are some fun English games (KS3)?

There are so many fun English games and quizzes out there it’s hard to choose! However, below you will find a great list of fun English games for Key Stage 3 that will engage and excite your whole class. We’ve split the games by each topic in the curriculum to help teachers find interactive activities relevant to their teaching topic that week!

KS3 Games for Fiction Texts

Twinkl Narrative Writing Samples

In Key Stage 3, students are expected to choose and read books independently and re-read books they’ve already covered to increase their familiarity with them and provide a basis for making comparisons. The Twinkl website has a variety of reading and writing samples to introduce students to new words and spelling, including nouns, verbs and adjectives they may not use every day.

KS3 games for non-fiction texts

Zombie Outbreak

Non-fiction writing comes in many forms, including persuasive writing, reporting or formal letters, but why not make this subject more fun with zombies! Using the world and language all to do with zombies, pupils will be taught to understand increasingly challenging texts and learn new vocabulary. They will be able to relate it explicitly to known language around the topic and come to understand more difficult words with the help of context and dictionaries. They will also build a range of oracy, reading and writing skills throughout this activity. 

KS3 spelling games

Easily Confused Words

Some words in the English language are so similar that it’s confusing to know which version should be used in specific contexts, for example, affect vs effect. Test your students on the different uses of homonyms and words people often find confusing with interactive quizzes.

Punctuation games for KS3

Punctuation Education Quiz

Quizzes are a great way to consolidate your pupil’s knowledge and skills regarding punctuation. Kids will learn the correct use of punctuation such as commas, speech marks, colons, semicolons, full stops, exclamation marks, question marks and apostrophes while engaging in interactive quizzes.  

English grammar games for KS3

Word Grammar – Skillwise

The Skillwise website is a part of the BBC Teach initiative and provides a wide range of teaching resources and printable games for you to play with your pupils to teach them all about English grammar. In these interactive lesson starters, your pupils will learn different word types and explore verbs, nouns, adjectives, adverbs, pronouns and connectives.

Online Shakespeare games for KS3

Shakespeare: Murder Mystery

Everyone loves a good mystery! What’s more, Shakespeare plays, particularly the likes of Macbeth, are perfect for a proper murder mystery game. Break the class up into groups and have them run through each character’s motivations and alibis for the death of Macbeth to find out who committedthe crime.

KS3 games for understanding poetry

Paint Chip Poetry

Using colour is a wonderful way to make poetry more vivid. Using a colour sample chip, you can be inspired by the colours and colour names to create flowing poetry. Create a prompt card and change your poems up every time to broaden your vocabulary and write something truly unique.

KS3 games for improving reading skills

Adventure at Dragon Castle: a Puzzled Adventure eBook

Adventure at Dragon Castle is an exciting puzzle adventure eBook featuring a fun-filled adventure story, vibrant illustrations and intriguing puzzles to solve. This eBook will help teachers educate their students about new nouns, verbs and adjectives, that students may not have encountered before. By asking students to take turns reading a section of the story aloud in front of the class, each individual will be exposed to these new words and improve their reading skills.

KS3 games for improving writing skills

Rory’s Story Cubes

What better way to get the imagination flowing for a creative writing session than with some simple randomised prompts? Story cubes, or story dice, let you roll for concept inspiration and storyboard ideas. Why not set a brief, give some story cubes to your class and let them create completely unique stories to practice and deepen their vocabulary?

KS3 games for improving spoken English

Tongue twisters

Getting your students to practice tongue twisters is a great way to introduce some silliness and fun into the classroom. Encourage students to pair up and see who can say a tongue twister quickly without messing up their pronunciation. Tongue twisters also are a great way to work on one or two sounds at a time to get the pronunciation just right if a student is struggling with a particular set of speech sounds or vocabulary.

Need more games for KS3?

There are so many more classroom games and activities for KS3 available that your students will love to play. Why not discover fun activities and games for many subjects in the curriculum such as Maths, History, Geography or Science?

Science games for Key Stage 3
Maths games for Key Stage 3
Classroom games for Key Stage 3 students

English games on interactive displays

All of the games listed above can be played seamlessly on a Promethean interactive display. The online games can be downloaded and played from the display and also mirrored onto student devices for ultimate engagement.

If you have enjoyed this guide, why not check out some of our other expert interactive whiteboard resources.

Are you interested in learning more? Speak with a Promethean expert and request your FREE demo today!