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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Brace yourselves. Phrasal verbs r bk

 

 

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

Double Decker

Introduction:

These are two board game activities to answer funny questions using past simple and present perfect. The games can be used together, or separately, depending on the objectives of the lesson.

Level: B1 +

Objectives:

  1. To practise answering When was the last time you…? and Have you ever…? questions.
  2. To develop speaking fluency, whilst revising regular and irregular verbs.
  3. To draw students’ attention to the difference between past simple and present perfect if two games are played in the same lesson.

Materials:

  1. 2 PDF Double Decker board games, one per pair or group of 3; a die 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. Aim to have two board games in use at the same time if you want to concentrate on explaining the differences between the tenses.
  2. Ask the students to look at the infinitives on their board games e.g. To hold a new born baby and in their groups ask them to change each verb into past simple and past participle e.g. to hold, held, held.
  3. Check as a class.
  4. Now 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 expression.
  5. The player must then ask their classmate a question using the expression on the given square e.g. When was the last time you held a newborn baby? Or Have you ever called someone by the wrong name? The other players answer the question and provide their partner, or other two group members, with as much detail as possible.
  6. The game continues in a circle going left.
  7. Swap the board games after sufficient time to allow two games to be played by each pair or group.
  8. At the end, ask the students to name some surprising and unexpected things they have learnt about their classmates.

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Best birthday ever

Best birthday ever

Introduction:

This is a crossword puzzle you can do with intermediate + students to review past simple irregular verbs. All the clues together form a description of my own birthday a few years ago, which makes the activity more personal. Students solve the puzzle individually, compare with their classmates and describe their own birthday or any other special event in their lives.

Level: B1+

Time: 40 minutes

Objectives:

  1. To review irregular verbs.
  2. To complete a crossword puzzle with past simple irregular verbs.
  3. To describe a special occasion using the verbs from the crossword puzzle.

Procedure:

  1. Elicit examples of special occasions from the students, e.g. graduation, Christmas, wedding anniversary, birthday, etc.
  2. Explain that you are going to give them a description of your best birthday but they will have to complete the story with the missing verbs.
  3. Give students worksheet A and ask them to first read all of the clues (1 to 20) to give them context and to help them with completing the sentences.
  4. Students work individually to complete the crossword using the clues.
  5. In pairs, ask them to compare their answers.
  6. If the students are struggling at this stage, give them a list of all 20 infinitive verbs (on the answer worksheet) in random order and encourage them to keep trying. The students I have done this crossword with became very engaged and loved the challenge.
  7. Check and provide feedback.

Fast finishers / homework idea:

  1. Students choose ten irregular verbs from the crossword and describe their best birthday ever.

worksheet-a-best-birthday-ever-crossword

best-birthday-ever-answer-sheet

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Soap Opera

Time to keep up with the times

Introduction:

This is a fun, competitive board game for small groups of 3 or 4 players to review the time expressions used with past simple and present perfect tenses.

Level: B1

Time: 45 minutes

 Objectives:

  1. To reach the end of the board with the highest number of points by forming questions or affirmative and negative sentences whilst using the time expressions written on the cards.

Materials:

  1. 48 printable cards, one per group of 3 or 4.
  2. 1 board, 1 die and 3 or 4 checkers per group of 3 or 4.

How to play:

  1. Print and cut out the cards, one set per group of 3 or 4, and place in three piles (Qs, As & Ns) face down on the table.
  2. The players take it in turns to throw the die and move the number thrown.
  3. When a player lands on a Q, A or N square they take the top card from the corresponding pile and create a Question or Affirmative or Negative sentence using the time expression on that card. For example, Q: Have you ever ridden an elephant before?  A: I’ve ridden a donkey twice. N: I haven’t ridden a camel this week. If the player uses the correct tense with the expression given they receive a point. The card is then placed at the bottom of the pile.
  4. Play continues in a circle going left.
  5. Monitor and write down the mistakes the players make and offer them an opportunity at the end of the game to correct them. They receive additional points for each mistake they correct.
  6. The winner is the player with the highest number of points for correct sentences.

time-to-keep-up-with-the-times-board-game-cards

P.S.  Thank you for your helpful feedback Kate. I really appreciate it.

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Soap Opera

Summary of past or recent events

Introduction:

This is a speaking activity which allows students to describe the most important things that happened to them in 2016, over the holidays, the last school year etc.

Objectives:

  1. To describe past events using past tenses or recent events using present perfect tenses.
  2. To practise asking wh-questions in authentic communication.

Procedure:

  1. Ask students to write down ten important or memorable things that happened to them in the chosen time period. Make sure they know the events will be discussed in class and are not too personal. You can decrease or increase that number depending on how talkative your class is (I found teenagers usually struggle with ten).
  2. Put students in pairs (student A and student B) or groups of three.
  3. Student A briefly describes the first event on the list. Once student A has finished student B asks additional questions starting with who, whose, what, when, where, why, which, how, how long and how many.
  4. Encourage students to show pictures of the events, if they have any on their phones, to make the activity more relevant.
  5. Students continue until they have each described all the events from their lists.

Alternative ideas:

  1. You could also ask students to come up with a recent summary of events in politics, art, science, etc.
  2. You could use it as a getting- to- know- you activity with students writing a list of “Ten things to know about me “.

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Ir(regular) Xmas

Introduction:

This is a fun activity which allows students to recycle regular and irregular verbs and practise writing short summaries . The video reminds me of my dad, also Robert, who is not great at languages but he keeps learning and trying his best. 🙂

Objectives:

  1. To practise regular and irregular verbs in context.
  2. To encourage pair work.
  3. To correctly use linking expressions.
  4. To write a short summary of the advert.

Procedure:

1. In pairs, the students discuss what activities they do at Christmas, e.g. I spend a lot of time with my family , I eat out a lot with my friends etc. Ask if they ever spent Christmas separated from their family and, if not, how do they think it might make them feel.

2. Tell students you are going to show them a short Christmas advert.

3. Play the video (A Christmas advertisement for Polish auction website Allegro):

4. Ask students what they thought of the advert and what emotions it evoked in them.

5. Put students in pairs or groups of three; give them 2 minutes to brainstorm verbs from the advert, and as they call them out, write them on the board. You don’t need to write all their suggestions, but ensure you have at least 20 verbs e.g. arrive, memorise, receive, study etc.

6. Ask one student from each group to write the past simple form of each verb on the board next to its infinitive.

7. Students write affirmative sentences about what happened in the story using the verbs in past simple e.g. The man in the advert practised his English every single day. He watched TV in English every night. When the students are finished they put the sentences in chronological order.

8. Elicit the following connecting words e.g. afterwards, as soon as, at first, at last, before long, in the meantime, later, next, soon, then, etc.

9. Students write a short summary (140 words ) of the advert using the sentences they wrote previously as a guide. For example, An older man received a dictionary. At last he was able to start learning. Before long his house was covered in post-it notes he used to memorise and study new vocabulary.

P.S. Merry Christmas

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