Level: Upper Intermediate
Location: Connected Classroom
Skills Focus: Peer Dictation
Language focus: Separable Phrasal Verbs
This is a guided peer dictation using the game shown above. There are actually 10 stages of this game (stage 1 is shown above) although I only generally go through the first four in class which takes about half an hour.
There’s a walkthrough here if you want to know how to play the game and get an idea of the range and complexity of the language. Use it to play the game before hand to get familiar with the game or print a copy off to take it into the class to help you play the game.
There is also an advert that plays before the game. Usually I present separable phrasal verbs on an IWB and then get learners to copy an explanation, examples I’ve given and some I’ve elicited from them. Meanwhile I use the freeze function on the projectors remote control to keep the text learners are copying on the board, open an internet browser, turn the volume down and navigate to the game. The advert plays silently out of sight while learners are finishing their copying.
When learners have finished I ask them to draw a line at the top of a new page and then to write 1 to 5 down the page.
1. I show learners the game. Tell them we are going to play four stages of the game and that I want them to tell me the name of each stage of the game.I click on stage 1 and ask for the name of this stage of the game (usually ‘The Desert” (or possibly dessert)).
2. I then elicit vocabulary items that they can see on the screen by asking “What’s this?” several times, “Who is this?”, “How does he feel?” and “Why?”
3. I then either pick the stone up or cut the top of the cactus off. You can do either in this stage of the game although at other points in play you have to follow a set order. I then ask learners what I did.
4. I guide learners towards a grammatically correct sentence using the target language using a degree of meta language such as:
5. When I can elicit a complete sentence from a learner (a sentence that is grammatically correct using a separated phrasal verb and encapsulates the full game play that’s taken place) I ask them to dictate it to the class for everyone to write down.
6. I continue in this way for the first four stages of the game.
I then ask learners to play the game at home. They should use the sentences they’ve written down to get through the four stages we played in class as quickly as possible and then write down the sentences for the next two stages. I collected the homework in the next class and used code correction to indicate the mistakes for learners to self/peer correct.