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02 Aug 2006

These are two simple listening activities which test students' understanding of two dialogues.

20 Jul 2006

Here are some useful learning activities based around scrabble letters.

13 Jul 2006

This warmer or end-of-lesson game is often very popular with teenagers although it can be used with both younger learners and adult...

29 Jun 2006

Why not play a game of consequences with a difference, where students must take on the role of another person?

14 Jun 2006

In this activity, students compare the advantages and disadvantages of living in different countries.

10 Jun 2006

This is a game to practise the vowel and diphthong sounds of the English sound system and the various ways in which these sounds are...

25 May 2006

This is an activity to help students consider the differences in pronunciation of regular past verbs.

17 May 2006

Divide the class in two teams. Give each team a set of slips with five (or three or two, depending on their level) things they have to...

01 Jan 2005

This activity involves group work and the four main language skills. The students respond to music and write a story.

12 May 2003

In this speaking activity students have to look at how to encourage migration to an imaginary city. They look at a number of projects to...

02 Feb 2003

This is a good way of getting students to memorise words and practise their pronunciation. The activity requires no preparation.

02 Feb 2003

This activity can be used for all levels in teaching English as a second language. I use it mainly for intermediate students and they...

02 Feb 2003

In this activity, students compare the properties of different but similar words.

02 Feb 2003

This is a great game to revise vocabulary and you can use it with any age group and any level by changing the category headings.

02 Feb 2003

At the start of the school year I ask my students to 'adopt a word' and share it with the class.

02 Feb 2003

These are two of the lexical threads that I use when dealing with the vast amounts of words that come up within my own classroom...

02 Feb 2003

This is an adaptation of the popular children's game where you have to pick up matching pictures, but in this activity we use the two...

02 Feb 2003

A persistent problem area for students is phrasal verbs. This story activity presents the verbs in a context helping the students to...

02 Feb 2003

This is an activity which can highlight and help with problems students may have with using words they've learned in sentences.

02 Feb 2003

One way to introduce vocabulary is having your students write poems.

02 Feb 2003

This game can help you check how rich your students' vocabulary is.

02 Feb 2003

This game can be adapted for matching definitions to words or matching opposites.

02 Feb 2003

The following games can be played throughout the school year but are also very useful as a round up at the end of term.

02 Feb 2003

This is a good way to help kids learn and review their vocabulary. It really helps them with the alphabet and spelling.

02 Feb 2003

This is an activity for advanced or, at least, upper intermediate students.

02 Feb 2003

A small box, such as a shoe box, is a very useful tool in the classroom - it can become a vocabulary box. You also need some small blank...

02 Feb 2003

This is a good activity for getting your students going in the morning. It is also excellent for revising vocabulary.

02 Feb 2003

I am a great believer in teaching phonetic script with new words, alongside their spelling, stress patterns and L1 equivalents.

02 Feb 2003

This is a good vocabulary activity to use with younger learners.

02 Feb 2003

Here are some tips you can give your students to help them with their vocabulary acquisition and self study.

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  • ProcedureGive each student a piece of paper. On this they must first write: The first name of their favourite movie star - male or female but of the opposite gender to themselves Their favourite fruit A number between 1 - 9 The names of vegetables...
  • The activity takes about 90 minutes and it is designed for intermediate students. Preparation Write these phrases on the board: standard of living mentality cuisine political situation environment climate culture Ask your students what they...
  • This is done through asking learners to identify words that rhyme, a challenging exercise for low levels, especially if the words are homophones (same sounds but different spelling). There is also a blank grid so you can adapt the game to your own...
  • The activity allows students to find the solutions themselves, making the language more memorable. My students particularly enjoy it as everybody has a chance to try out the sounds, whilst I can step away from the board and observe the class at work...
  • Examples: Name five things that move Name five drinks Name five things you would be doing if you weren't here Name five ways to get rich Name five animals A member of the team reads the category of things they have to name and the whole team shouts...
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  • PreparationDownload a copy of the budget worksheet for each student. You can download this below as a PDF document.Procedure
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  • PreparationThe teacher uses a vocabulary box. This box must mainly comprise of words on pieces of paper (either verbs, adjectives, adverbs etc.) all said by the learners themselves in previous lessons. Importantly a lot of words are required for...
  • It can take up to 90 minutes or be done quite quickly using fewer words and is designed for lower intermediate students, though again this depends on the number and complexity of the words used. Preparation Prepare a collection of words which have...
  • It really gets students focused and working on tasks as a team and can be a saviour to fill the last ten minutes of a class when you have run out of ideas! Procedure
  • Procedure I give my students templates with headings: Word Meaning Part of speech Example of usage         The students choose a word that they would like to adopt and do some research on it using the template above...
  • The main advantages of lexical threads are that they become familiar to the learners, they are easy to plan and they aid memory. After doing these activities, students don't need any further explanation of what to do when they are repeated. This...
  • Preparation During regular classes, note down the word combinations that come up. Then put each part of the collocations on two separates pieces of paper. Here is an example I had when we were talking about the environment. The word combinations...
  • It is also memorable so it's easier for students to remember them too.Preparation Have each of the phrasal verbs from the story written on a piece of card, large enough for all the students to read. Have the verbs in their infinitive form e.g. to go...
  • I've commonly found that although students are able to remember words and what they mean, they still have problems when they actually try to use the words in a sentence. This activity highlights the problem and helps to move students' knowledge of...
  • It sounds difficult, but you can make one yourself, such as I am a teacher, I work hard, I love my students, and they love me too. Give them the words you want them to use. Perhaps elicit some rhyming words for this vocabulary set. Students may...
  • Each row or team sends a representative to the board. They choose a coloured pen or piece of chalk and they stand in a line. You write a letter and the first student must write a word beginning with that letter. Then the following student writes a...
  • ProcedureYou need two sets of cards. White cards for the words and another colour for the questions. Put all questions in a bag or hat at the start of the game.Give each student at least three word cards, placed in front of them on their desks....
  • First play with the whole class and then try in groups (good for mixed ability groups). Guess the word This game is good for more abstract words. Choose five words relating to recent conversational themes. Write sets of clues to help students...
  • Procedure Prepare a colourful piece of paper which can be used as a background for the wall dictionary. Sew 26 pockets on it (or use glue/sticky tape) and label each pocket with a letter of the alphabet. Ask the children to prepare sets of letter...
  • Dictate to the students pairs of words (e.g. hold/embrace, high/tall) and ask them to classify the pairs as Same, Opposite or Different. Once you have finished dictating the pairs of words, the students should compare their choices with their...
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  • Being able to work out the correct pronunciation of a word from the dictionary all on their own helps the learner to become autonomous and independent of any 'helpers' in real life situations. So one of my revision exercises goes like this:
  • To teach the names of clothes, I have my students cut a page of a newspaper in the shape of a hat, gloves, trousers, etc. Then, using a washing line and clothes pegs, I ask my students to hang their projects on the washing line. My students repeat...
  • Make your own word box Use one card per word, with the English on one side and a translation on the other. Test yourself with the cards, sort them into categories, play games with them. Find a good basic vocabulary word list Look for a list...
  • My students particular enjoy the fact that in this activity they are encouraged to listen in to each other’s conversations: the concept of ‘eavesdropping’. You will need to decide on a context that will be of interest to your class. One idea that...
  • The four plays are: Hamlet Henry V As You Like It The Merchant of Venice It is designed to show the learners how Shakespeare's words are used in modern English, and to teach them a little about the plays the extracts are from. It also aims to show...
  • The class discusses how to make the phone and what materials are needed. The teacher elicits the necessary language to make and use the phones. Materials Disposable plastic cups, two per student Nylon string, about two metres per student Small...

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