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'The' and 'A'

Introduction: Students use their listening and comprehension skilld to follow the teachers or a students instructions.

What is learnt? Articles / another / the other / the last / one / ones / + Listening Skills

Preparation: You'll need about twenty brightly colored pens. Ideally there should be four or five in three different colors and some twos or singles in other colors.


How the game is played:

  1. Ask one of the students to come up and sit near you at an empty table. Make sure all the rest of the class has a good view of the table.

  2. Hold all the pens upright in a bunch in the centre of the table. Release them, letting them fall at random.

  3. Give the student at your side instructions as follows: 'Take a blue one. Take the blue one on the right. Take another blue one. Take the last blue one. Take a red one. Take another red one. Take the rest of the red ones. Take the brown one. Take the green one on the left. Take a green one.' etc.

  4. Carry on until the table has been cleared by the student. If at any time the student can't follow your instructions, repeat two or three times until they get it. If the student misunderstands, indicate that they should replace the pen and you repeat the instruction.

  5. Repeat step 3 if you think the students need another model. Otherwise reverse the process and get the student to instruct you. You simply obey the student's instructions when their utterance is correct. Do and say nothing when they're not correct (the fact that you haven't taken a pen is a clear indication that they have made a mistake). Continue until the table is clear.

  6. Repeat the exercise until you are sure most of the students have got the grammar. Organise small groups of students. Get them to empty and pool their pencil cases and try the exercise in small groups.


Acknowledgments: Thanks to Graham.J.B. for submitting this game to us.

01.01.2007. 00:00


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