Then show them the picture of the guy at the top of the post. Students come up with 5 deductions/speculations based on the picture. Tell them they can speculate about his age, nationality, job, personality or anything else they like.
The show them the pictures from the handout. Give them a few minutes to make speculations about the people.
Then show them the following list:
A police officer
A rock star
A bank robber
A professional sports-person
Tell student that they must decide which person has which job. The secret is: There’s no correct answer! But don’t tell them that yet. Give them 5-10 minute to make speculations and provide reasons for which person has which job, then have them present their reasoning to the class and debate them. Only then can you reveal that there’s no correct answer!
Follow up activity
Composition: Can you judge a book by it’s cover? Have students write and essay/article on the topic of first impressions and judging people based on their appearance.
Students get 20 questions to guess where the teacher went on holiday.
Allow students to ask you more questions to find out some information about the holiday.
Project the handout onto the board. Students must circulate, speaking to all their classmates until they have found someone who did all of the listed activities during the summer holidays. When they find someone who has done one of the activities they must also ask them for some details and record them in the details column.
Before starting model past simple yes/no questions on the board:
Went to another continent:
Did you go to another continent?
Also model questions for details:
Where did you go?
What did you do there?
What did you eat?
The winner is the first person to find someone people who have done each of the things on the list or prove that nobody has done them by speaking to everyone.
Try to speak to everyone in the class. You must find someone who did the following things in their summer holidays.
Thanks to Nicky Hockly at The Consultants-e for the inspiration for this lesson plan. It’s an icebreaking lesson in which students can use their mobiles (shock horror) for intermediate levels and up.
In a new class students are always keen to learn a bit about their new teacher and if you’re willing to share and personalise your classes the students will reciprocate with you and each other. So start by projecting some photos of things from your life on to the board with some sentence stems for deduction.
He/she/it could/might/may be his girlfriend (possibility)
He/she/it must be his brother (almost certain)
He/she/it can’t be his sister (impossible)
I’d say that…
I’d hazard a guess that…
I bet you €X that’s his brother.
I (don’t) reckon that…
I’m absolutely certain that…
There’s no doubt in my mind that…
There’s a good/strong/slim chance that…
I could be wrong but I think…
Drill sentence stress and intonation. Then put students in pairs and show them some of the pictures. Monitor them as they make guesses about who the people in the pictures are and have students share their deductions with the class. Award points for correct guesses.
Here are some example pictures from my life:
Other useful language:
You look just like (your mum)
You don’t look anything like (your sister)
You are the spitting image of (your Dad) (you look exactly the same)
You take after (your Dad) – you look/act the same.
Step 2: Pair work
Put students in groups of 2/3 and tell them to take out their phones and go to their photo albums. They must then take it in turns to show their group a picture of the following things:
A very close friend
An activity you love
A great meal
A fantastic day
An amazing view
The others in the group must use the language of deduction to guess what the picture is and then they can ask questions to discover more information about their partner.
You might want to model some questions on the board:
When was the photo taken?
How long ago did you take this photo?
Where were you when you took the photo?
What does your Dad do?
How long have you been …ing?
Language for reactions:
Wow! That looks amazing/lovely/gorgeous
No way! Me too!
Your Dad works in finance? No way, mine does too!
That must be (amazing/fantastic etc.) – present event/state
That must have been (amazing/fantastic/so much fun) – past experience
Give SS 10-15 minutes to talk, encourage the use of the vocabulary, award points to groups using the most.
Students then report back to the class about the favourite photo their classmates showed them. If you can, project the photos onto the board so the whole class can see them.
Story behind the picture. SS write a composition (150-200 words) telling the story behind one specific picture. Encourage them to copy paste the picture at the top of the page. This is a good opportunity to practice narrative tenses: “I had been walking all day, that’s why I look a bit tired in the photo.” “The sun was shining, the wind was blowing in the trees” “It was the scariest thing I have ever done.” “I was walking down the street when I saw a…”
Kahoot is a great site where teacher’s can design quizzes and surveys that students can play on their mobile devices in class. It makes for fast, frantic and fun classes with competitive, engaged students. I’m definitely going to be putting this one to the test this term.
A great site offering texts in a number of different languages with instant translations, simply click on the word you don’t understand and the translation appears above it. The site then generates a flashcard set based on the words you’ve clicked on.