Animal Anagrams

Individual activity Group activity

Early Stages

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Ive got 20 min

20 min

Ive got 60 min

60 min

About the activity & how to play it

Noils and giters and rabes*, oh my! Can you unscramble those three?

Animal anagrams is a word game, where you rearrange the letters to reveal animal names. It’s lots of fun and encourages cognitive thinking, whether someone plays alone or in a group. Don’t let it become competitive, though, it’s really nice if people work together to find the right answer!

This fun activity is great as a standalone game, or incorporated into a special animal-themed event if playing with groups. You can make it harder or simpler, just by using shorter or longer words, and jumbling up the letters less or more.

*Lions and tigers and bears, oh my!


You’ll need

  1. A list of animals scrambled up
  2. A flip chart, whiteboard or very large sheet of paper to pin to the wall
    Press 'Email Resources' button below the image above to get an email with animal anagram examples

The Activity

  • If one person is playing alone, list all the anagrams on a sheet, attach it to a clipboard and give it to the person to do at their leisure
  • If you’re playing in a group:
  1. Gather the group together in a room or area
  2. Put the chart, whiteboard or large people paper where it can be clearly seen, or on the wall
  3. Write the scrambled animal words on the board and ask the group to guess what they are
  4. Give or act out a clue, if needed
  • Scrambled words can look quite obscure, so if you’re playing this with a group at exploratory level, adjust the anagrams like this:
  1. Scramble up the words but keep the first and last letters the same and just scramble the middle letters. For example, rsqurlei (squirrel) can be written as srquierl – this should make it a little easier to find the answer

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