Word association recitation

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

Matthew Wilson


  • Write a word on the board, for example sun.
  • Get the students to come up with a word that they would associate with that word, for example round.
  • Write that word beside the original word on the board. Now get the students to come up with an association for the new word, for example circle.
  • Continue the word association game until you have a good number of words on the board for the size of your class (for a class of 40, about eight words will do).
  • Now get each student to quietly choose a word from the words on the board (they don't have to write it down, just memorise it).
  • Confirm by going through each word asking people to raise their hand if they have chosen that word. If there is a word that nobody has chosen, all the students should memorise it.
  • Erase all the words from the board, drawing a circle in the place of each one.
  • Then prompt the students to recite the list from memory by pointing to the circles on the board and asking the students to say their chosen word when the time comes.
  • When they get to any unchosen words, the class can either clap in unison, or have all the students say the word. Go forwards and backwards through the list at varying speeds.
  • Lastly, get all the students to say all of the words together.
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