So, what brings you here?

Introduction: 

This is a board game that could be used to assess your learners’ needs or to simply do a review of tenses. Students answer questions in pairs or small groups of three and the teacher closely monitors to determine what the learners are struggling with. I have deliberately chosen the questions that hopefully only evoke positive 🙂 emotions from learners to make them feel good throughout the activity especially if is their first class and they don’t know the teacher and/or the classmates.

Level: B1+

Time: 45 minutes

Objectives:

  1. To assess the learners’ needs.
  2. To review past, present and future tenses etc.
  3. To answer questions containing the target language whilst playing a board game.

Materials (Click on the worksheet below to download the PDF file):

  1. So, what brings you here board game and one die per group of 3.

Procedure:

  1. Put the students in groups of 2 or 3, and give them a copy of So, what brings you here? board game and a die.
  2. Players take it in turns to throw the die twice – the first throw indicates which column they should use, and the second throw indicates which row, to obtain the question.
  3. When a player lands on a square all three players must answer the question from that square in as much detail as possible. Encourage students to ask each other additional questions to obtain more information.
  4. The game continues in the circle going left.
  5. At the end, write down the mistakes students made during the activity and ask them to correct them in their teams.
  6. Check together as a class.
  7. Ask students what they found out about their classmates.

Recommended reading:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/amberjohnson-jimludema/2018/03/29/for-a-high-performing-team-ask-positive-questions/#46af16781ddf

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Do you believe in ghosts?

Introduction: 

This is a board game for B2 students to review common verbs and prepositions. Students answer questions containing the target language and do a couple of recycling activities at the end to further reinforce the vocabulary.

Level: B2

Time: 45 minutes

Objectives:

  1. To review common verbs and prepositions.
  2. To use the verbs and prepositions in context whilst playing a board game.

Materials (Click on the worksheet below to download the PDF file):

  1. Do you believe in ghosts? board game.
  2. One die per group of 3.

Procedure:

  1. Put the students in groups of 3, and give them a copy of Do you believe in ghosts? board game and a die. All the verbs and dependent prepositions are in bold to encourage noticing.
  2. Players take it in turns to throw the die twice – the first throw indicates which column they should use, and the second throw indicates which row, to obtain the question.
  3. When a player lands on a square all three players must answer the question from that square in as much detail as possible. Encourage students to ask each other additional questions to obtain more information.
  4. The game continues in the circle going left.
  5. At the end, ask the students to copy all the verbs and prepositions in alphabetical order in their notebooks and finally circle the verbs they use on a regular basis, underline the ones that were new and tick the expressions they didn’t get to use whilst playing the board game.

Fast finishers:

  1. Ask students to write their own questions with the verbs they didn’t practice whilst playing the board game and interview their classmates.

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What would you do if…?

Introduction: 

This is a board game for B2 students to review the second conditional. Students complete the board game with their own examples and then play a game in pairs or small groups of three.

Level: B2

Time: 45 minutes

Objectives:

  1. To review the second conditional.
  2. To write examples on the board using the target language.
  3. To answer questions containing the target language whilst playing a board game.

Materials (Click on the worksheet below to download the PDF file):

  1. What would you do if… board game and one die per group of 3.

Procedure:

  1. Put the students in groups of 2 or 3, and give them a copy of What would you do if…? board game.
  2. Students now complete the blue squares with their own examples. If the verb is already given, students must use that verb in their example, e.g. What would you do if… you broke your friend’s phone?
  3. When the students have finished they pass their board game to the team/ group on their right.
  4. Students now go over ALL the examples written by their classmates to make sure they are grammatically correct.
  5. Check together as a class.
  6. Hand each group a die.
  7. Players take it in turns to throw the die twice – the first throw indicates which column they should use, and the second throw indicates which row, to obtain the question.
  8. When a player lands on a square all three players must answer the question from that square in as much detail as possible. Encourage students to ask each other additional questions to obtain more information.
  9. The game continues in the circle going left.
  10. At the end, ask the students to choose three questions they didn’t answer during the game and answer them in writing.

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I will make better mistakes tomorrow

Introduction:

This is an activity for B2+ students to review some of the most common mistakes they make. The students correct the mistakes individually and interview their partners. I have created this activity with my Spanish students in mind, but I am sure you could use it with other nationalities too.

Level: B2+

Time: 45 minutes

Objectives:

  1. To identify and correct common mistakes made by B2+ students.

Materials (Click on the worksheet below to download the PDF file):

  1. I will make better mistakes tomorrow Worksheet, one per student

Procedure:

  1. Give each student a I will make better mistakes tomorrow  Worksheet and in pairs ask them to discuss the quotes at the top of the page.
  2. Elicit some answers from students to learn more about their attitudes to errors.
  3. Now individually ask students to correct the mistakes in questions 1 to 18.
  4. When the students have finished, ask them to check their answers with a classmate. Together they must decide on an answer and agree.
  5. Check together as a class. The class must decide as a group what they believe the correct answer to be. As teacher, only write their final answers on the board, do not tell them if they are correct or not at this stage. Once they have discussed and agreed on all of their answers as a class, tell them how many (if any) they have wrong – do not tell them which ones are wrong. As a class, they must review all of the questions and decide which one(s) they think is incorrect. This increases talking time and requires repetition of the language; it also encourages competition.
  6. In the same pairs, or groups of three, ask students to interview each other using the questions 1 to 18.

Fast finishers:

  1. Ask students to write down true statements about themselves using the expressions they were not able to correct by themselves.

P.S. “Your best teacher is your last mistake.” Ralph Nader

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Triple treat makes a comeback

Introduction:

These are three board game activities to talk about health, students’ hometowns and fashion. They can be used together or separately, and are a great way to help students practise speaking and develop fluency, as well as prepare for Part 1 of the FCE /CAE speaking exam.

Level: B2+

Objectives:

  1. To practise speaking about health, students’ hometowns and fashion.

Materials (Click on the worksheet below to download the PDF file):

  1. Triple treat makes a comeback, one PDF board game per pair or group of 3; a die and a timer per pair or group of 3.

Procedure:

  1. Put the students in pairs or groups of 3 and give them a copy of one of the board games and a die, they can use their phones for the timer. Aim to have all three board games in use at the same time.
  2. Players take it in turns to throw the die twice – the first throw indicates which column they should use, and the second throw indicates which row, to obtain the question.
  3. The player must then speak for at least 1 minute on that topic and provide their partner, or other two group members, with as much detail as possible.
  4. The game continues in a circle going left.
  5. Swap the board games after sufficient time to allow all three games to be played by each pair or group.
  6. At the end, ask the students to name three new things they have learnt about their classmates.

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Make or do? Have no clue :(

Introduction:

This is a fun, competitive card game for small groups of 3 or more players to review the most common collocations with do and make.

Level: B2

Time: 45 minutes

Objectives:

  1. To practise and review common collocations with do and make.
  2. To divide expressions into two categories: ones that collocate with do and ones that collocate with make.
  3. To collect the most cards by completing the sentences written on the cards.

Materials (Click on the worksheets below to download the PDF files):

  1. 36 printable Make or do, have no clue Cards (laminate for future use).
  2. Make or do, have no clue Worksheet.

Procedure:

  1. Elicit some common collocations with do and make and write them on the board, such as homework / washing / judo; a cake, a mistake, a mess.
  2. Put students in small groups of 2 or 3 and give each group a Make or do? Have no clue Worksheet.
  3. To make the activity more competitive, tell students that the first group to complete the task correctly wins.
  4. Monitor and check answers as a class.
  5. Print and cut out the Make or do? Have no clue Cards, one set per group of 3 or 4.
  6. Place all cards face down on the table.
  7. The first player draws the top card off the pile and reads the incomplete sentence out loud. The remaining players listen to the sentence and try to guess if the expression in the sentence collocates with do or make (make sure students use the correct tense). The first player to raise their hand and give the correct answer keeps the card. To discourage random guessing you can penalize incorrect responses. If the answer is wrong, the card is placed at the bottom of the pile. Play continues in a circle going left.
  8. The winner is the player with the most cards at the end of the game.
  9. At the end of the game ask the players to give their cards to the player on their left. The players now individually make sentences with the collocations on their classmates’ cards, e.g. I make myself a cup of coffee as soon as I wake up. Adam makes wonderful coffee for his mother every morning.

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Do, make, have or take? An instant headache