About the Activities

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Before I explain the rationale for using these activities I would like to point out the objective underlying them all. This is a wide ranging collection of activities including puzzles, pair work tasks, role plays, information gap activities, games and other communicative activities. The basic aim of all of them is to get the learner to speak. Some of the activities are quite short and won't take more than 5-10 minutes to complete. This, however, is an advantage in my opinion. It makes integrating the activities much easier. Quite a few, especially the letter and number activities, can be used as simple warm up activities to any lesson. This is highly justified by the fact that letter and number practice is something most learners constantly need. You will also probably recognise quite a few of the activity formats used. I have taken advantage of existing, well known and popular activity types and adapted them to my own purpose. Some of them are so simple that many of you could have prepared them (or may have already done so) yourselves. The advantage here, then, is that they are ready-made for easy use. For those who may not be familiar with all of them, here is a brief description:

HAPPY FAMILIES. This is a card game for three to four players- no more. It consists of a set of cards showing six or seven families. There are four members in each family. One player shares out the cards among the group. Each player looks at his cards and sorts them into families. The object of the game is collect as many complete families as possible. In turn, a player asks another player for a specific card. If the person asked has the card, s/he hands it to the person who asked and the first player has the right to ask again. S/he may ask the same person again or another player in the group. If the person asked does not have the card requested, then s/he now has the right to ask for a card. When a player has a complete family, he or she puts it down on the table.Traditionally, the way to ask for a card was simply by saying, 'have you got……? In fact, as you will see with the ways I have adapted this card game, any yes/no type question will do.

PAIR PUZZLE. In a pair puzzle, each learner has different pieces of information. Together, by sharing their clues, they can complete the table and solve the puzzle.

INFORMATION GAP. Two learners exchange information to complete a table. Usually, each leaner must ask a specific question to find out the information needed.

BINGO. This game can be played with the whole class. Each student has a card with numbers (or letters) on it. No two students have the same numbers (or letters). The teacher, or a student, calls out a number (or letter) and those who have the number on their cards cross it off. The game is continued in this manner until any one student has crossed off all the numbers (or letters) on his or her card and declares himself the winner. Traditionally, as the last number (or letter) is crossed off, the person shouts out 'house'.

FIND THE DIFFERENCES. Two learners have similar documents. It could be a timetable, a menu, a description of something or even a picture. They ask each other questions concerning the document to find out the number of differences between them.

WHO ARE YOU? This game may be less familiar to most people as it's a game I adapted myself from a commercially produced game. For this game three sets of identical cards are necessary (three photocopies of the game sheet, cut up into individual cards). Each player takes a set and places them on the table in front of him. All the cards in the set are similar and all have certain points in common with other cards. However, no two cards are exactly the same. Each player takes a card from the third set (without the other seeing which card was chosen) and this becomes the hidden identity for the other to guess. In turn, each asks yes/no type questions about a characteristic of the hidden identity. According to the answer the players discards those cards in his own set which don't correspond. The game is continued in this manner until a player has discovered the hidden identity of the other.

Chris' TEFL teacher resource site | Articles | About the Activities | Numbers and Letters | Companies and Employees | Eating Out | Meeting People and Socialising | Travel and Hotels | Business Writing | Telephoning | Presentations | Negotiating | Meetings

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Date de dernière mise à jour : 21/11/02