My bucket list

Introduction:

This is a free board game to talk about things students would like to add to or put on their bucket lists. I have done this activity with a variety of classes already and unexpectedly had students both overcome with emotion and excited about things they suddenly felt inspired to try. I have purposefully chosen ONLY irregular verbs for this game, so you could use it either to revise irregular verbs or as a fun speaking activity.

Level: B1

Objectives:

  1. To revise irregular verbs
  2. To talk about things students would like to put on their bucket lists

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

  1. My bucket list worksheet
  2. PDF My bucket list board game per pair or group of three.

Procedure:

  1. Write to kick the bucket on the board and elicit some answers from students as to what the expression means. None of my students knew the expression, so just make sure you explain it at the beginning of the class. Other “fun” expressions you might want to add are : pushing up daisies, to sleep with the fishes, six feet under, your number is up, to pop one’s clogs, on the wrong side of the grass, dead as a doornail, to fall off one’s perch, to go home in a box.
  2. Next ask students if they know what a bucket list is and give them a few personal examples to create interest and elicit the answer e.g. be a black belt in karate, speak fluent German, run a marathon, drive a race car etc. ( These are all the things I would love to do)
  3. Once the concept is clear, put the students in pairs or groups and give them a copy of My bucket list worksheet and ask them to write a few examples of the things they would like to do before they kick the bucket and write them down in I am all in column. When they are finished ask them to briefly compare with their classmate(s).
  4. Next give the students My bucket list board game and a die.
  5. 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.
  6. The players now speak about the idea e.g. win a bet at the races (Well done Adam) and each player must explain to the others if they are all in and WHY, if they have already done it (been there, done that) and if so describe the experience, if it is not their cup of tea and WHY or if they are on the fence about it at this moment in time. After discussing each idea the students write down the name of the activity in the appropriate column. Do not rush the students and give them control over the activity as long as they answer the questions in English. Monitor and help with vocabulary as needed.
  7. At the end, ask the students to choose a few ideas they didn’t have time to discuss in class and in writing give reasons why they would like to add these ideas to their bucket lists.

Food for thought:

http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2012/feb/01/top-five-regrets-of-the-dying

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So, what brings you here?

Simply perfect

Summary of past or recent events

Double Decker

Time to keep up with the times

 

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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Simply perfect

Introduction: 

This is a board game for B2 students to review past simple and present perfect. Students complete the board game with their own examples and then answer question in pairs or small groups of three.

Level: B2

Time: 45 minutes

Objectives:

  1. To review past simple and present perfect.
  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. Simply perfect 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 Simply perfect board game.
  2. Students first underline the verbs in all the questions on the board.
  3. Next, students use the underlined verbs to write a new question in the empty square provided below, changing all questions in the past simple tense into questions in the present perfect tense and all the questions in the present perfect tense into questions in the past simple tense, e.g. Change the question in Square 1:1 What did you eat for dinner last night? into What have you eaten today? for Square 2:1. Change the question in Square 4:1 Have you ever ridden an animal? into Did you ride a horse when you were little? for Square 4:2. The only requirement is for students to use the same verb in their new question.
  4. When the students have finished they pass their board game to the team/ group on their right.
  5. Students now go over ALL the examples written by their classmates to make sure they are grammatically correct.
  6. Check together as a class.
  7. Hand each group a die.
  8. 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.
  9. 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.
  10. The game continues in the circle going left.
  11. At the end, ask the students to choose three questions they didn’t answer during the game and answer them in writing.

Related posts:

http://www.onestopenglish.com/community/lesson-share/pdf-content/lesson-share-time-expressions-lesson-plan/556366.article

Summary of past or recent events

Best birthday ever

Ir(regular) Xmas

Double Decker

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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A grand (two-party) coalition of verbs and prepositions

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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(Un)conditional love

Stop beating around the bush

Introduction:

This is an activity for B2+ students to review some of the common phrasal verbs related to communication. Students use context to come up with their own definitions of the ten phrasal verbs, answer the questions and share their examples with other students.

Level: B1 +

Time: 45 minutes

Objectives:

  1. To familiarise students with some of the most common phrasal verbs related to communication.
  2. To write down definitions of the phrasal verbs using the context provided.
  3. To discuss students’ examples with another classmate.

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

  1. Stop beating around the bush Worksheet

Procedure:

  1. Write the following questions on the board and ask students to briefly discuss them in pairs: What is good communication? What are the greatest challenges to effective communication? What role does body language play in communication? Do you believe people could benefit from communication courses?
  2. Elicit some answers from students and then write the following phrasal verbs on the board: to back up, to bring up, to cut off, to open up, to point out , to rant about, to speak up, to talk down to, to tell off, to tune out.
  3. In pairs, ask students to briefly define the phrasal verbs they know or think they remember. Tell the students all the phrasal verbs are related to communication.
  4. Hand each student the Stop beating around the bush Worksheet.
  5. Individually, students look at the questions in column 2 and complete the first column, e.g. Definition/ synonym: Support. Name two people who you know would always back you up.
  6. In pairs, students compare their answers with a classmate.
  7. Correct and provide feedback.
  8. Individually, ask the students to answer the questions in column 2 using the appropriate phrasal verb, e.g. Name two things you find yourself unable to stop ranting about. Your examples: I can’t stop ranting about men. I am constantly ranting about work. Encourage students to vary the structures slightly to give them an opportunity to play with the form of the verbs.
  9. When the students have finished, ask them to switch their worksheets, read each other’s answers and circle all the examples they have in common with their classmate, underline 3 examples they want to know more about and cross out 3 examples they completely disagree with.
  10. In their pairs, students now discuss their examples. Encourage students to use the phrasal verbs in their responses. You can ask students to switch pairs again to provide them with more opportunities to practise the target language.

Fast finishers:

  1. Students choose 4 questions from the worksheet and try to predict what the teacher’s answer would be or the classmate’s that they haven’t spoken to, e.g. What two topics make you tune out in the middle of a conversation?  Karolina tunes out when people talk about board games and the weather. When they are finished they give their sentences to the teacher/classmate to check if their predictions were correct.

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Phrasal verbs can be put off, never forgotten

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How do you …?

You talkin’ to me?

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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