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World Cup 2026 – Best football lesson plans, resources and ideas for KS1-KS4

Flag covered football boot representing 2026 World Cup

If your pupils are in a FIFA frenzy, these lesson plans, activities and ideas offer some excellent educational links…

by Teachwire
Football maths lesson plan
DOWNLOAD A FREE RESOURCE! Football maths – Make predictions using real-time statistics

Where is the 2026 World Cup?

The World Cup 2026 will be jointly hosted by 16 cities in three North American countries: Canada, Mexico and the US. This is the first time the tournament has been hosted by three nations.

When is the the next World Cup?

The exact dates for the World Cup 2026 have not been revealed yet. However, the tournament will take place in June and July.

Make World Cup predictions using real-time stats

Girl in school uniform taking part in World Cup 2026 activities

With major sporting events come great opportunities to bring the rich world of statistics into the primary classroom. Football provides vast amounts of data with which many children will already be familiar. This includes top goal scorers, league tables, numbers of passes and red cards.

Maths lessons are the perfect opportunity to harness the enthusiasm for the game in order to challenge mathematical thinking. Download Aidan Severs’ KS2 football statistic maths lesson plan.

KS2 PE & English lesson plan

Use the beautiful game to get children’s creative juices flowing. This diary writing activity for KS2 involves writing from the perspective of a footballer about to play in a big match.

Disney Shooting Stars training

Girls outside in colourful bibs, inspired by World Cup 2026

Help girls unlock their inner superheroes and get lost in the magic of Disney storytelling, all while getting physically active.

Designed to be delivered at breakfast club, lunchtime or after school, The Disney inspired Shooting Stars training course from the FA is free for primary school staff. It comprises an online training course made of five separate modules:

  • Introduction
  • The fundamentals
  • Put it into practice
  • The Disney experience
  • Bring it to the playground

Free KS1 football poetry resource pack

Harness pupils’ enthusiasm for football by reading the football poem included in this free Plazoom KS1 World Cup resource pack. They’ll look at how verbs are used, before writing their own poems.

The download contains teaching notes and slides, a poem, football images, a poetry planning sheet and themed writing paper.

KS2 World Cup oracy activities and worksheets

This Key Stage 2 World Cup resource pack from Plazoom asks pupils to create an oral commentary to accompany images from football matches, clips of football matches or school football activities.

They’ll explore the language commentators use. They’ll also identify how they show enthusiasm when speaking. Finally, they’ll write a short sports article that takes into account different viewpoints.

Describe settings with Frank Lampard

Illustrated space scene

Written by Frank Lampard, the Frankie’s Magic Football series is the perfect combination of magic and football to inspire creative writing. With each adventure taking place in a different location (from the prehistoric land of dinosaurs to the jungles of Brazil), the books prompt children to consider the idea of setting in story writing.

This KS1 football literacy lesson plan encourages children to think about the techniques involved in good descriptive writing and how powerful language, adjectives and sensory description can create different effects.

Motivate footy fanatics with pop art

Keith Haring artwork

It’s tempting to think that using the World Cup to engage children’s learning has to involve copious amounts of PE. However, making links between football and other subject areas can be a powerful motivator for children whose main interest is sports.

This KS2 football art lesson plan shows how the movements of favourite footballers, combined with pop art, can inspire an eye-catching art project.

KS2 book topic – Kick by Mitch Johnson

Kick by Mitch Johnson

Kick by Mitch Johnson focuses on young boy Budi who lives in Jakarta, Indonesia. Instead of going to school he has to work at the local factory making football boots.

This special book covers poverty, child labour and crime, while maintaining an undertone of humour, hope and bravery.

Read the book in class and use these cross-curriculular UKS2 activity ideas to extend children’s understanding of the novel.

Develop decision-making in games

This KS3/4 PE lesson plan is based around improving students’ decision-making skills no matter how chaotic a game gets.

It helps boost skills, confidence and character, while thinking about game-winning tactics as well as technique.

The physics of football

In 1997, Brazilian football player Roberto Carlos’ free kick hooked dramatically to the left and landed in goal. How did he do it?

Watch the video then answer quiz questions and learn more at TEDEd.

Football School writing resources

These KS2 resources were created for the 2018 World Cup but can easily be adapted.

The authors of the Football School series have set pupils an exciting challenge to write a lesson for their favourite subject, but with a World Cup twist. 

Head to the National Literacy Trust website to get the resource, handouts, a poster and printable certificates.

You can also download a Football School activity kit so children can design their own team kit, mascot, crest, stadium and more.

KS3 maths worksheet – percentage changes

This KS3 maths football worksheet asks students to use calculate percentage changes in footballers’ salaries over time.

More ideas and resources

Football reading lists

Check out the National Literacy Trust’s list of recommended football reads for children aged 0-12. We’ve also got our own list of football book recommendations here.

Using football to improve behaviour

Read about how Chris Baylis used Premier League Primary Stars to improve the behaviour of KS1 boys, focusing on the values of respect, fair play and teamwork.

What England footballer Leah Williamson learnt at school

Arsenal and England defender Leah Williamson looks back on the efforts her school made to help her realise her footballing ambitions.

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