Matching Cards 2 - Phrasal Verbs


Upper Intermediate.

Skills Practised

Matching phrasal verbs with synonyms.


5 -10 minutes.


1. Print out a set of cards (Set 1 or Set 2) or make your own set of cards.

How it Works

1. Divide the class into pairs or groups of 3 to 4. Give each pair or group a complete set of 18 shuffled cards and have them place the cards face down in 3 rows of 6 in such a way that no-one sees what is written on any of the cards.

2. One player then begins by picking up any two cards and showing them to the group. If the player believes the cards are a match (i.e. one has a phrasal verb and the other has its synonym), he or she says so and keeps the cards. If the player believes the two cards are not a match, he or she returns them face down to the same positions from where they were taken. Then the next player to the left takes any two cards, and so on.

3. The game continues until all the cards have been claimed as 'matches', with the player having the most cards at the end winning.

- If players believe a pair of cards claimed as a 'match' are not, in fact, a match, they may ask for the teacher to check. If they are a match, the player picking up the cards keeps them. If not, they are returned to the same positions face down from where they were taken.
- This game tests not only knowledge of phrasal verbs, but also short-term memory. Players must try to recall what is written on the cards they have already seen and their positions in order to choose 'matches'.

Variation for a smaller class: In order to keep a pair of cards, a player must use the phrasal verb correctly in a sentence. Have each pair or group call you over to check whether the sentence is correct or not when necessary.

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