16 dez 2018 Finding Common Ground Between Technology and Kinaesthetics
If you have been teaching teens for the past years you have probably noticed how attached they are to their mobiles or tablets. To say that they love technology is an understatement. Playing video games, watching TV series and films or listening to music are some of the usual activities they perform in their free time and they all involve technology.
But technology is not the only thing they are interested in. Take, for instance, teenagers who practise sports or even go to a dance school. Would it not be nice to blend both interests and have them engage even more in your lessons?
Below you will find ways to provide your teenage (and adult) students with fun and gripping learning moments in the classroom.
- Working with Music
Even us teachers sometimes get tired of the so-called fill in the blanks exercise. So, to get off the beaten track, we can elaborate activities that will make students listen to a song and stand up for a while. Below you can find one example of a successful vocabulary activity, which you can adapt according to your needs.
- Step 1: choose a song and pick out a set of vocabulary you want to work with
- Step 2: cut up cards with all the words you have selected (a minimum of ten words is recommended)
- Step 3: randomly stick the cards on a board or wall
- Step 4: divide the students in two groups and have them form a line facing the cards
- Step 5: play the song and have them pick a word card as they listen to the word being sung
- Step 6: the group with more cards at the end wins
Extra idea: you can use this activity with idioms or even grammar structures that you may want to explore later in the lesson.
- Working with QR codes
QR codes have been used for a while in many ELT lessons and they are a great example of activities that contemplate technology and kinaesthetics. There are a lot of ways you can use them, but I will present one example of activity that tends to work really well with a younger audience.
Picture the following scenario: after having delivered a vocabulary lesson, you decide to start the next lesson with a review of this vocabulary set. What you could do:
- Step 1: access a code generator website
- Step 2: for each word/expression, create QR codes with definitions
- Step 3: stick the QR codes around the class
- Step 4: divide the students in two or three groups
- Step 5: have each group stand up, choose a QR code, scan it and say the correct word/expression
- Step 6: the group with more correct answers is the winner
- Working with Videos
Videos are fun and extremely effective when you are looking for a less book-centred activity. Remember: it is valid to consider what kind of films and TV series your students watch in order to select an appropriate video.
Here I present one activity which you can adapt as you find suitable for your students’ level and age.
- Step 1: pick a video
- Step 2: create yes-or-no questions about the video (for instance: ‘Were the people wearing blue?’ or ‘Were there five people in the video?’, etc)
- Step 3: divide the students in two or three groups
- Step 4: have each group gather in the centre of the classroom
- Step 5: ask a question
- Step 6: if the group thinks the answer is true, they move to the left, and if they think the answer is false, they move to the right
- Step 7: the group with more correct answers is the winner
I hope these three activities inspire you to go further, adapt and create new ones. If you do so, please share them with me. I will be pleased to know what you have to say about them. And if you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact me. My e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org. Let’s keep in touch! ?