Apples to Apples Junior (board game review for EFL teachers)

I received a copy of this game from a friend a few weeks back, and just got around to trying it with a class of junior high school students yesterday.

Basically the game consists of one player laying down an adjective card, like ‘scary’, and then the other players laying down nouns, like ‘car accident’, ‘octopus’, or ‘tree house’. The original player then chooses which of the nouns they feel is closest in meaning to the adjective or most appropriate. Players can also choose ridiculous or illogical cards if they want. The player that laid down the card that was chosen gets a point, and another player gets to decide the next adjective.

This game worked extremely well, as students had to understand all the words in order to play. There was a lot of asking and dictionary use, and students really seemed to enjoy the game. Being the junior version, the language used was appropriate for my keen junior high school students. I would estimate that they knew about half the words involved. We played for about fifteen minutes, but it would be just as easy to have shorter games once the students are used to the rules and start learning the language.

One thing I really like is that the adjective cards list two or three synonyms, and the noun cards have some simple facts or jokes printed on them, so there is a lot of potential for students to move beyond the basic vocabulary.

The game contains almost 600 word cards, so should be a useful resource for the long term. I thoroughly recommend this game, with the caveat being that it does not seem to be available in Japan, and will only ship it to a US address. Still, if you can get hold of a copy, I think you’ll like it!





15 Jul 2011, 1:10pm
by Clarissa at Talk to the Clouds


Ah, good to know! The Party Edition of the adult game apparently has cards like Harry Potter, etc.–I don’t know if they show up in this version. (The celebrities in the main game can be a bit dated for younger players/unfamiliar to non-US-players. However, there are so many cards that you could spend some time sorting them out into ones you think they’d know, and I think you’d still have a lot.) Anyway, I’ll probably pick this one up.

Hi Clarissa

Thanks for stopping by! This Junior version only has generic nouns and adjectives, so very easy to use regardless of cultural context.

I was curious about the main game -might be picking one up in the future for use with advanced students…

15 Jul 2011, 1:53pm
by Clarissa at Talk to the Clouds


Ah, right, I see! Well, it might be worth a try, especially if you teach any college-age students–but the newer party box might be better. (Too bad Lady Gaga postdates the game — but the main game does include some blank cards, and you can buy more!)

Thanks for the post!


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