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Here's a short description of the activities you can find on this page. Click on them to go there directly:

You can sit down if ...

  1. Ask the students to stand up.
  2. Say 'You can sit down if ...' and finish it according to the level of the group. (For example: ... if you've got a brother; ... if you've never been abroad; ... if you prefer cooking to washing up; etc.)
  3. Students sit down if the sentence is true for them.
  4. After a few sentences, prompt students to make up their own sentences; or, if you've done the activity before, they can start right away.
  5. The activity ends when all pupils have sat down.
Notes
  • I found that this activity is especially popular with younger pupils (below 12).
  • This activity is extremely flexible, since you can practise any structure you want.
  • You can tailor the activity to the interest of your group by using sentences like 'You can sit down if you watch Formula-1.'
  • My pupils always appreciate it when a sentence is so personal that it fits only one of them; for example 'You can sit down if you have a hamster and two parrots'.
  • I learnt this activity from Caroline Bodóczky; the variation that students should add their sentences is mine.

Why didn't you come to my party?

  1. Ask a student 'Why didn't you come to my party last night?'
  2. When he/she has made up an excuse, go on to the next student and ask the same question.
  3. Be careful not to make it too long; when you see that students are not coming up with any more imaginative answers, finish the activity.
Notes
  • You will notice that if you use it when you've just had a new structure that is appropriate here, students will use it without you having to prompt them to do so; for example 'had to' or 'was/were'.
  • Shy and less imaginative students are best asked towards the middle of the activity, when they've already heard a few examples but not all the easy answers have been used yet - or you can let them repeat previous answers, if you wish.
  • Important: Don't use it when you gave a party the previous night and all the students attended.

The first

  1. Ask a student 'What was the first thing you did this morning?'
  2. When he/she has answered, you can go on asking the same question, or even better, make little variations like 'What was the first thing you saw this morning?'; or 'Who was the first person you met this week?'
  3. After a few answers you can prompt students to take over asking the questions.
Notes
  • This is one of the warmers that can be used often, because it's so variable.
  • It's very good for pre-teaching the defining relative clause, which causes so many problems. (At least, for Hungarian speakers.)


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