giovedì 14 novembre 2013

When Tradition Becomes Innovation

I don't like labels but if I have to include myself in a millenial generation I have to say I belong to Generation Y. Most of my students, on the other hand, belong to Generation Z.
I'm one of those people who could live with a mobile phone that just lets me make calls and send text messages. Using the computer only at home or at school wouldn't drive me crazy and I could survive without an I-pad. Could Generation Z say the same? Maybe not! 
So we teachers try to keep our methods up-to-date in order to make our lessons fun and engaging.

Last weekend I was tidying up my parents' attic and I came across my old computer, which looked like this one in the picture. I started to remember happy memories from my youth and I thought about the games I used to play when I was a teen and how they could be effective  for teaching English to teenagers.

I used these games to review grammar and vocabulary this week.

This is a classic game for parties. Chairs are set in a circle with one fewer chair than there are players. As the music plays, the players move around the chairs. To make the game more suitable for the dance party theme, have the players dance as they move around the chairs. When the music stops, the players scramble to sit down on one of the chairs. The person without a chair is out of the game. Remove one of the chairs and repeat the process until only one person is left. I changed a little the game by asking a question to the student without the chair. If they answer correctly they go on playing otherwise they are out of the game. Remove one of the chairs and repeat the process until only one student is left. I used this game to check if my pre-teen students remembered COLLOCATIONS with MAKE and DO. You can use it to review vocabulary or grammar.

This is one of my favourite game (I used to play it when I was younger than a teen). You just need a dice, 1 counter per player  and a gameboard you create according to your studentes' needs. I created this one for my teen students who had to review the past simple. They really enjoyed it because they had the chance to review History topics, too! 

My father who works on tanker ships taught me this game. This is a game for two players where you try to guess the location of five ships your opponent has hidden on a grid. Players take turns calling out a row and column, attempting to name a square containing enemy ship.  There are one length 2 ships, two length 3 ships, one length 4 ship, and one length 5 ship. Instead of ships I used words. After my second group of teens had studied vocabulary about the house I divided them in two teams (two players) and they put on the grids words which were 4, 5, 6, and 7 letter long. 

Have you ever dug up anything from your past to make your teaching method(s) more effecttive?
I'd like you to share your experiences with me!

2 commenti:

  1. I totally agree with you, games are fantastic and students can improve English and relationships among them

  2. I've played the game Noughts and Crosses recently and the teens loved it! I put 9 papers on the board. In each paper I wrote the words and phrases I wanted them to train, then I divided my students in 2 teams. And they had to make sentences with the words. So, we played the traditional game.