Riddles can be a great way to practice speaking with ESL students. Riddles are a fantastic way to practice vocabulary and also engage students to think outside the box. This weeks’ game is a simple “What am I?” set of riddles. These riddles are made for young learners.
These can also be used with other levels as quick warmers.
Activity Time: 5 mins +
1. Write or project the riddles in the following presentation.
Find printable riddles and creative ways to create curiosity in the class room here.
For those who have not tried this game before, students look at four pictures that are connected by one word. They must guess the word.
Activity Time: 10 +
Materials required: Powerpoint presentation below.
Skills practiced: Speaking, listening.
Level: Kids, teens and adults Beginners +
1. Split the class into teams. Groups of two and three are best.
2. Explain the game to the students. Tell them that they are going to see four pictures. The four pictures are connected by one common word. In their groups, they must decide what the word is. To ensure that they understand, try this example.
3. Now begin the game. For each correct answer, each team gets one point. If both teams guess the correct answer, they both get the point. To avoid any problems, ask the teams to write down their answer before they say it. Don’t let students shout the answer. If you need to, deduct points to deter shouting out answers.
ESL Countdown is a very popular show in the UK and Ireland. It is a simple game that is great as a warmer or cooler for the ESL classroom. It’s useful with nearly every level and a great way to get your students writing and practicing spelling. Everyone from young learners to adults can enjoy this simple and fun ESL activity.Activity Time: 5 mins +
Note: The clock is set for 30 seconds. Allow extra time for younger or lower level students.
2. Explain to the students that they must pick vowels or consonants and then they have 30 seconds to write any words they can make with the letters on the board. The team who creates the longest correct words gets one point for each correct word.
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Story of St Patrick (Video)
Whiskey In The Jar
Project or give each student a list of the key vocabulary of the song. First, get the students to find the meaning of the words if they don’t know them.
Part Two: Listening
Give each student a copy of the handout. Give them some time to read and correct any errors they think they see, then let them listen and correct the errors.
Stage 1 Listen and correct the errors
|The original lyrics|
The Wild Rover – gap fill
1. Give students a copy of the handout. Tell them to look at the gaps. Each gap is missing a verb. Tell them to predict which word is missing.2. Students check their ideas in pairs.3. Students listen to the song and correct their answers.4. Now get them singing and clapping! My students always love singing this song.
St Patrick’s Day Storyboard
Activity Time: 10 – 15 minutes +
Materials required: Copy of picture board
Skills practiced: Vocabulary and expressions
Level: Young Learners +
1. Print out a copy of the storyboards for each pair of students.
2. Cut up the cards and mix them.
3. Give a set of the cards to each pair of students. Tell them that they must look at the pictures and arrange them in the correct order. Then they must write a story using the cards. Tell them that they must write one sentence per picture (Young Learners, a paragraph for teens etc) Tell the students they have 10 minutes.
Allow the students to use resources such as dictionaries etc to develop their stories.
4. After students have written their stories, get them to share and present them to the class.
St Patrick’s Day Idioms
Materials required: Copy of idiom pictures below PDF
Skills practiced: Vocabulary and expressions
Level: Young Learners (one or two idioms),Teens and adults. Beginners +
1. After you have introduced other vocabulary for St Patrick’s Day, you can introduce idioms. Show the students the idiom and then show them the picture.
2. In pairs, students try to decide what the idiom means then they report back to the class. Give an example of the idiom in use and then get the students to write their own sentence.
3. Revision is important with Idioms. As in the Powerpoint presentation, when revising idioms show the students the picture and ask them in pairs to write the idiom. After check if they have remembered correctly. Following this, concept check the meaning.
|Definition: A wish of good luck to someone.|
|Definition: A talent for making things grow.|
|Definition: To recycle materials and good for the environment.|
|Definition: A different place appears better than where you are.|
|Expression: The Irish are lucky or have luck.|
|Definition: To give someone permission to do something.|
Extra materials For Young Learners
Flashcards – Large flashcards
Key words Ireland, leprechaun, pot of gold, rainbow, shamrock and snake
Word Search – A word search to practice the key vocabulary of St Patrick’s Day