Among Us is a hugely popular game right now, especially with our third graders! They’re always focused on getting their work done by Fridays at 3:30 p.m. so they can play together, and we’ve started joining in. To be honest, we teachers might be hooked too!
If you’re wondering what Among Us is, you’re not alone! Among Us is a multi-player social deduction game (do I hear higher-order thinking?) for 4 to 10 players. The game takes place on one of three maps: the spaceship (Skeld), sky base (MIRA HQ), or alien planet (POLUS). Each player is (secretly) assigned one of two roles: Crewmate or Impostor.
Crewmates: Complete all tasks before getting killed by The Impostor(s) and/or identify The Impostor and eject them off the map.
Impostors: Sabotage the ship and eliminate as many crewmates as possible before being identified and voted off (identified as an impostor).
The game fosters a surprising number of key skills such as communication, collaboration, critical thinking, reasoning, and map fluency. Here are some ways to incorporate it into the classroom, just make sure to get parent permission!
One of the simplest ways to monopolize this popular fad is to use it as a motivational tool. In John Cox’s 3rd grade classroom, he designates 3:30 – 4:00 p.m. on Fridays as “Kid Time.” Students who have completed all work for the week and participated in class have the opportunity to play Among Us together (teachers join in too!) during this time.
Kaitlin Rodrigues implements a similar system: “I have a Friday lunch bunch that comes to play with me over Zoom. It’s kids from my classes and some siblings, mute except for meetings and no telling who kills you (their rules)! They miss being able to just socialize and good off and I do too.”
Kim Chambers uses Among Us to encourage students to pay attention during class presentations. “After each student presents, a display of characters with a fact from the presentation is shared. One of those facts is incorrect, and students have to guess the impostor (the incorrect fact).”
Among Us Themed Escape Room(s)
Our students flip out over breakout or escape rooms, and we’ve incorporated a multitude of themes from Mario to Jurassic Park. Why not Among Us, too? You can easily create your own or, if you’re trying it for the first time, use a template or pre-made game.
Breakout/Escape rooms are great for education because they:
- Are fun and engaging.
- Can be adapted for any subject, content, or grade level.
- Can be implemented virtually, in-person, or hybrid.
- Allow students to flex their critical thinking skills.
- Require collaboration and teamwork.
Here are a few pre-made Among Us classroom escapes on TPT:
If you elect to create your own from scratch, check out So You Want to Build a Classroom Escape Room to help you get started!
“Find the impostor” can be used as a quick check for understanding in any subject. Give students a handful of choices and ask them to find the impostor (the one that doesn’t belong). For deeper learning, have students discuss how they knew and what the other “crewmates” have in common.
Get the template here.
Educator Mabel Z uses a similar “Find the impostor” set up for vocabulary practice. She says, “I created a 2×2 table, each rectangle has one Among Us character, and beside each character, there is a Chinese and English word. One pair (two words) doesn’t match, and students need to find it (impostor).”
Jessica Potter, a 2nd grade teacher, came up with a way to use Among Us in spelling. She calls it, “Which word is ‘sus’?” Students spell the words she says and then look back at them to see if they’re “sus” (spelled funny). You could also provide the target words and have students decide whether they are correct or “sus” and need to be fixed. She watches them spell in real-time and can use phrases like, “Oooh, that word is sus, try again!” or “Out of your 10 words, one is an impostor (spelled wrong).”
As many districts transition back to in-person learning, consider incorporating Among Us into your classroom decor. Sarah Humiston had each of her students design their crewmate to be displayed!
Virtual Classroom Banner
If you’re still teaching virtually, upload an Among Us themed banner to Google Classroom. Make your own or check out these freebies: Banner 1 , Banner 2 . If you make your own, be sure to set the dimensions as 1000 x 250 pixels, so it doesn’t get distorted.
Student Engagement Using the Terminology
Sus, elec, vent. Try incorporating these Among us terms into everyday teaching. Teacher Julia Welciek says, “I told (students) they had to get their ‘tasks’ done throughout the day. They kept coming up to me and asking with urgency, ‘What’s my next task?!'”
Need a cheat sheet? Check out the six Among Us terms you need to know below.
*Educators, please always seek parent and admin permission before using Among Us at school. It should be noted that Among Us does include cartoonish violence, and The Apple Store suggests it is appropriate for ages 9 and up.*
How are you using Among Us in the classroom? Let us know in the comments.
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