Technologically and linguistically adventurous EFL teacher, trainer, writer and manager

This is a very simple two- or three-stage activity I’ve successfully used with small classes of young learners and teens to revise both grammar and vocabulary. They love drawing on the board!

Stage one: drawing

Drawing

Drawing the past simple

Divide the board into a space for each student/team.

Say a word (e.g. car, trousers) or a sentence featuring the grammar structure you want to practise (e.g. I went to the beach. I played with my brother.)

Ask the students to draw a relevant picture. They shouldn’t worry about their artistic skills, just draw anything that they feel represents the language.

Repeat, ensuring they don’t clean the board in between.

When they have about 10 pictures, stop! 🙂

Stage two: hitting

Hitting

Before giving students the flyswatters, I normally give them two rules:

  1. If you hit anyone with it, we stop.
  2. They’re very cheap. If you hit the board too hard, it’ll break and we’ll have to stop. (This happened once!)

Give the students flyswatters.

Call out one of the words/sentences.

The students hit the relevant picture.

Start with them hitting their own pictures, then move them around – this can be quite challenging if other students have interpreted the language in a more abstract way!

You can also ask one of the students to be the teacher. With small groups, you replace them as the player.

Stage three: cleaning (optional)

Repeat stage two, but this time, instead of flyswatters, give the students board rubbers. They clean the relevant picture each time you say the language.

When there are only two pictures left, they have to tell you the words/sentences.

Alternatives

You can also use paper rolled into a tube instead of flyswatters. Stage two works well with flashcards too.

Adults would also enjoy this game.

With larger groups it could be done in teams or on paper.

Simple, minimal preparation, and lots of fun! Enjoy!

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Comments on: "Hitting the drawing board" (7)

  1. This will be very useful to my Japanese students…thank you.

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  2. I LOVE flyswatter! It is one of my FAVORITE games to play with students. http://eslcarissa.blogspot.com/2012/09/flyswatter.html I’ve played with rolled up newspapers when I couldn’t get a hold of flyswatters.

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  3. samia bilal said:

    Really it has fun and benefit I’ll try it with my students

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  4. I love the idea of students drawing the TL before playing. I’ve usually done the drawing myself [ugh!], or brought flashcards; but your way is much more involving for kids! Super!!

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  5. Hi Sandy,
    Just to let you know that we’ve shortlisted this blog post for this month’s TeachingEnglish blog award and I’ll be making a post about it on Saturday’s TeachingEnglish Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/TeachingEnglish.BritishCouncil, if you’d like to check there for likes and comments.

    Best,
    Ann

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  6. Nice one! Great idea thanks Sandy 🙂

    Like

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