Game – Red Herrings / Call my bluff – you will need big English dictionaries.
Here is the handout with examples of strange English words and the correct definition, students have to invent fake definitions.
Use the sheet Red Herrings to introduce the game. Choose one of the examples from the sheet and put it on the board.
There are strange words with 3 possible definitions, put SS in teams, pairs or threes depending on numbers. SS have to decide which is the correct definition, encourage them to explain why they think it is correct, they should use modal verbs of deduction:
- It can’t be number 1 because
- It could be number 2 because
- It must be number 3 because
Each team gets 1 point for each correct guess.
Do 2 examples if necessary. Then you can either give the students the strange English words with the correct definition (on the handout) and they have to invent to fake ones, or you give them the dictionaries and they find strange words themselves.
Students must prepare 3 definitions (1 real, 2 fake) with a sentence example. Teacher must check definitions and sentences for accuracy before they’re used in the game, if there are mistakes it is obvious which ones have been invented.
Give SS time to write their definitions and correct them, then play the game as a class, each team reads out a word and the 3 definitions and the others must guess which one and explain their decisions. SS get 1 point for a correct guess and the team whose word it is gets 1 point for each team they tricked the others into guessing a fake definition.