First a conundrum: which is the odd one out? 1. The White House, 2. The Eiffel Tower, 3. Buckingham Palace. Here are some possible answers:
This is a wonderful and classic game to play in a classroom to get a collaborative comic book narrative from the students. The game is as old as the hills and is also known under the names of exquisite corpse (a Surrealist version of the game), consequences, comic jam, and a hundred other variations.
In this collection of lessons I have readapted some of the most successful and entertaining gameshow formats from US and UK television and radio from over the last forty years. This set of lessons forms the third pillar in my theory of communicative learning.
I’ve written before invoking Sturgeon’s Law in relation to the shortcomings of ESL coursebooks. I know I ruffled some feathers with that and maybe 90% is a bit high. There certainly are some good activity books around, but at the same time it has to be said that there is a lot of rubbish.
I love language games but one game in particular couldn’t be easier to enact and brings great benefits for learners. The essential race-to-the-board game works as follows: divide the class into four or five teams and get a team name from each one. Then write this on the board:
4 videos, 4 activities.
It is said that Winston Churchill was such a formidable conversationalist that he could reply to almost anything anyone said, with a literary quote. He was such a voracious reader and had such a remarkable memory that he had a massive bank of ready wisdom he could draw on for any given situation.
Along with debates and drama, game shows are the third pillar in what I consider to be the true essence and art of student-centred communicative language learning. In this respect, Family Fortunes is a perfect game for groups, engendering whole class focus and synergy.
I was looking out of the window while they were doing some pair work and all I could hear behind me was Chinese being spoken. No English. So I stopped the class and decided to reason with them.
In Scott Thornbury’s blog the other week there arose, as usual, quite a lengthy discussion in the comments section, in which Rob Haines wrote this interesting remark.
‘Personality’ is a word we use to describe famous people and this is partly because celebrities often have a repertoire of interesting stories to tell. They can hone this persona into a fine art because they get interviewed so much that they have heard almost every question that can be asked.