English for students
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 ...
- Ask the students to stand up.
- 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.)
- Students sit down if the sentence is true for them.
- 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.
- The activity ends when all pupils have sat down.
- 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?
- Ask a student 'Why didn't you come to my party last night?'
- When he/she has made up an excuse, go on to the next student and ask the same question.
- 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.
- 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.
- Ask a student 'What was the first thing you did this morning?'
- 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?'
- After a few answers you can prompt students to take over asking the questions.
- 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.)