This is an idea to help students with their writing of narratives. It gives all the students some essential (and some superfluous) vocabulary.

Brian Fowlis


Before giving the students the title (or first line) of the story, play a game of word association.

  • The teacher gives one word and the student on the left must say the first word s/he can think of which is associated with it.
  • Then the student on her/his left says the first word which s/he can think of which is associated with the previous word.
  • This can be repeated around the class a few times.
  • The teacher writes all the words on the board as they appear.
  • Eventually you should have 20 or 30 words on the board, the latter ones bearing no relation to the original.
  • Here is a typical collection: tree, forest, countryside, city, buildings, offices, work, leisure, holidays, beach, sun, moon, night, dark, black, reggae, music, piano, jazz, etc.
  • The teacher then gives the students the first line of the story using some of the vocabulary on the board (e.g., I'll never forget the night I went to my first reggae club while I was on holiday in a strange city).
  • The students (individually or in pairs) continue the story, drawing on the vocabulary on the board for ideas.
Language level
Language Level: 
Pre-intermediate: A2

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