Posted in Games

Last Day of Term: Top 5 Quiz

Image credit: www.drupal.org

Follow me on twitter @RobbioDobbio

The last day of term is fast approaching so I’ve made a fun quiz to keep students entertained. I recommend bringing sweets as a prize for the winning team. Credit to my friend Dan for the inspiration and some of the questions. Download the questions and instructions below:

top-5-quiz

Instructions

Spilt the class into groups of 2 or 3, give each group a piece of paper and encourage them to come up with an interesting team name. Explain that you are going to give the teams a category and they have 3 minutes to come up with the top 5 items in that category. For example: the top 5 largest countries in the world by area. Students are awarded 1 point for every answer that they guess that appears in the top 5, and an additional bonus ½ point for every answer that is in the correct place in the list, meaning that there is a total of 7.5 points on offer for each round. The different categories are listed below:

(Note: this was designed with Spanish students in Barcelona in mind so some categories may not be suitable for all groups)

Largest countries in the world by area

1.       Russia

2.       Canada

3.       China

4.       USA

5.       Brazil

Most popular pets in the USA

1.       Cat

2.       Dog

3.       Fish

4.       Small mammal (hamster, gerbil, rabbit etc.)

5.       Bird

Most viewed artists on youtube.com

1.       Justin Beiber

2.       Rihanna

3.       Taylor Swift

4.       Katy Perry

5.       Eminem

Highest grossing films of all time

1.       Avatar

2.       Titanic

3.       Star Wars: The Force Awakens

4.       Jurassic World

5.       The Avengers

Best-selling books of all time

1.       The Lord of the Rings

2.       The Hobbit

3.       The Little Prince

4.       Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s stone

5.       And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie

Largest oceans in the world

1.       Pacific

2.       Atlantic

3.       Indian

4.       Southern

5.       Arctic

Richest people in the world

1.       Bill Gates

2.       Amancio Ortega

3.       Warren Buffett

4.       Carlos Slim

5.       Jeff Bezos

First 5 Pixar films in the order they were released

1.       Toy Story

2.       A Bug’s Life

3.       Toy Story 2

4.       Monsters’ Inc

5.       Finding Nemo

Largest cities in Europe (inc Russia)

1.       Istanbul

2.       Moscow

3.       London

4.       St. Petersburg

5.       Berlin

Countries in Europe by population

1.       Russia

2.       Germany

3.       Turkey

4.       France

5.       UK

 

Male tennis players with most grand slams

1.       Roger Federer

2.       Pete Sampras

3.       Rafa Nadal

4.       Novak Djokovic

5.       Bjorn Borg

Female tennis players with most grand slams

1.       Steffi Graf

2.       Serena Williams

3.       Chris Evert

4.       Martina Navaratilova

5.       Margaret Court

Most popular ice-cream flavours in the world

1.       Vanilla

2.       Chocolate

3.       Cookies and cream

4.       Strawberry

5.       Mint choc-chip

Best-paid football (soccer) players (2016)

1.       Cristiano Ronaldo

2.       Lionel Messi

3.       Wayne Rooney

4.       Zlatan Ibrahimovic

5.       Yaya Toure

Most popular football clubs in the world

1.       Man Utd

2.       Real Madrid

3.       Barcelona

4.       Chelsea

5.       Arsenal

Autonomous regions in Spain by area.

1.       Castile-Leon

2.       Andalusia

3.       Castile-La Mancha

4.       Aragon

5.       Extremadura

Barcelona FC’s most expensive signings

1.       Neymar Jr.

2.       Luis Suarez

3.       Zlatan Ibrahimovic

4.       David Villa

5.       Marc Overmars

5 elements in the periodic table from which the letters in the symbol do not appear in the name of the element in Spanish or in English. (award 1 point for name of element and ½ for correct symbol:

1.       K – Potassium

2.       Na – Sodium

3.       Hg – Mercury

4.       Au – Gold

5.       W – Tungsten

Most popular boys names in UK

1.       Muhammed

2.       Oliver

3.       Jack

4.       Noah

5.       Jacob

Most popular girls names in UK

1.       Sophia

2.       Emily

3.       Lily

4.       Olivia

5.       Amelia

Most popular boys names in Spain

1.       Alejandro

2.       Daniel

3.       David

4.       Pablo

5.       Adrián

Most popular girls names in Spain

1.       Maria

2.       Lucia

3.       Paula

4.       Laura

5.       Andrea

Posted in Games, Writing Classes

Circle Stories

Image credit: www.thekettle.ca

Follow me on twitter @RobbioDobbio

This is a lesson plan designed for lower-level (A2-B1) teenagers. It is designed to help students write short stories using different narrative tenses, sequences and discourse markers.

Preparation

All you need is plenty of paper and a pen for each student.

Procedure

Sit students in a circle and give them each a pen and piece of paper. Tell them that they are going to write stories together; if you have 8 student, at the end of the class they will have written 8 stories.

Write on the board:

Once, there was a man/woman called ……. who….

Tell students to copy the sentence onto their piece of paper, decide if the character is a man or a woman and give them a name.

Students then pass the piece of paper to the left; they must then complete the first sentence, for example:

Once, there was a man called Jimmy who lived under a bridge.

Students then pass the paper again, and copy down and complete the following:

One day ….. was …..ing….

For example:

One day Jimmy was walking down the street

Students pass again and complete the following:

when…+ past simple

One day Jimmy was walking down the street when he saw a police car driving towards him.

Continue the process but now start to introduce different words to begin the sentences, the whole writing process will look like this:

 

  1. Once there was a man/woman called …who…
  2. Complete sentence 1.
  3. One day …. was….ing
  4. Complete sentence 3: when…..
  5. Suddenly….
  6. Fortunately….
  7. Unfortunately….
  8. And in the end….
  9. And the moral of the story is….

While students are writing try to monitor and help them with vocab and narrative tenses. When they have all finished have them read out their stories one by one and then vote on their favourite one.

Follow up

Students write another story using the same basic structure for homework.

Posted in Conversation Classes, Games, Writing Classes

Tall Tales

Image credit: breweryarts.org

Follow me on twitter @RobbioDobbio

This is an activity that can be used with all levels in which students have to invent tall tales and try to convince their classmates that they’re true. It is similar to two truths and a lie but the stories have to be at least 5 sentences long and must contain a range of narrative tenses as well as language of cohesion appropriate to the level. Credit to my colleague Peter Rassa for the idea. Download my stories below:

Tall Tales

Preparation

Write three short stories (5 sentences long) about your life or the lives of your family members, one of the stories must be true, the others should be made up but believable. For example:

  1. My Dad used to work as a doctor in the emergency department of a hospital. One day he was working the night shift when suddenly the police came into the hospital and told the staff that someone very important was about to come in. The police secured the hospital and then Prince Philip, the Queen’s husband, arrived. He had broken his arm when he fell off his horse playing polo. My Dad did an x-ray on his arm and helped to cure him. Two weeks later he received a thank you card and an autographed photo from the prince.
  2. My Granddad was a war hero. In the second world war he was a paratrooper, this meant that he had to jump out of a plane and parachute into enemy territory. In 1944 when the allies landed on the beach in northern France my Granddad parachuted in behind enemy lines and sabotaged Nazi fortifications. He was almost captured several times. He was shot in a big battle in the winter of 1944 and got sent home to recover. He was given a medal of honour after the war.
  3.  When I was at university I used to work as a waiter at the weekends and in the evening to earn extra money. One weekend I was sent to work on a big battleship. We didn’t know what the event was but we had to wear special white suits. We were given silver trays with glasses of champagne. We had to stand on the deck of the ship and serve drinks to the guests. Suddenly everyone stood up and Princess Anne, the queen’s sister walked in. She stopped to speak to some of the workers, I spoke to her and offered her a glass of champagne, when she took it I almost dropped the tray! It was almost a complete disaster!

Procedure

Split the class into groups of 3, it works best if you have 3 or more groups. Project or print out your three stories, tell students that one of them is true and two are false. Give them a few minutes to read the stories and decide which one is true. Students then guess, award points for correct guesses.

Then tell students that they must write 3 short stories, 1 true and 2 false. Give them 10 minutes to do so. Monitor and help them while they do this, make sure the groups are well separated so that they don’t overhear each other, maybe play some music to mask the sound or consider sending one group to another room.

Students then read their stories out, the other students must guess which story is true. Award points for correct guesses and points to any team whose story convinces another team that it is true. The winning team is the one with the most points at the end.

Posted in Games, Uncategorized

Game: Alphabet Quiz CPE Idioms Version

Image credit: www.20minutos.es

Follow me on twitter @RobbioDobbio

This is a new version of my Alphabet Quiz game designed for very high levels (high C1) in which students have to guess different idioms which begin with each letter of the alphabet. Credit to my colleague Peter Rassa for the idea. The game is similar to the gameshow “Pasaparabla” on Spanish television. You will need the lesson plan with the question sheet:

Alphabet Quiz CPE Idioms Version

Procedure

Write the alphabet on the board, if you’re feeling really creative you can do it in a circle as shown in the picture above. Quickly recap the letters that often cause your students problems. It varies from place to place but in Spain they struggle with J, G, E, I, Q, W, and Y.

Quickly recap the letters that often cause your students problems. It varies from place to place but in Spain they struggle with J, G, E, I, Q, W, and Y.

Write all your students’ names on the board in a list.

Choose a player to go first, explain to them that you are going to ask them a question, the answer to the question begins with the letter A. They have two options: they can attempt to answer the question or they can say “pass”. If they choose to answer and they get it right, they get 1 point but if they get it wrong they lose 1 point. If they choose to pass, then it is the next student’s turn but the next student is asked the “B” question. You continue like this through the list of questions, every time a question is answered correctly you cross that letter out from the list on the board. When you reach the end of the list (the “Z” question) you then return to the top of the list and work your way through any questions which were not answered the first time around.

NOTE: It is important that students don’t shout out the answers to the questions if it’s not their turn as that question could be revisited later.

The winner is the student with the most points when all the questions have been answered or at the end of a set time limit.

 

  1. A person’s weak spot. Achilles heel.
  2. A person who is bad and makes other bad. Bad Apple
  3. A relaxed, quiet time immediately before period of violent activity or argument .Calm before the storm.
  4. If you are overcharged or underpaid, open, unfair and hard to prevent. Rip-off has a similar meaning. daylight robbery.
  5. If someone has egg on their face, they are made to look foolish or embarrassed.
  6. If you have to face the music, you have to accept the negative consequences of something you have done wrong.
  7. If you get something off your chest, you confess to something that has been troubling you.
  8. If someone is happy-go-lucky, they don’t worry or plan and accept things as they happen.
  9. This expression is used to refer to something good that happens on top of an already good thing or situation. Icing on the cake
  10. If people are joined at the hip, they are very closely connected and think the same way.
  11. When someone kicks the bucket, they die.
  12. The last straw is the final problem that makes someone lose their temper or the problem that finally brought about the collapse of something. It comes from an Arabic story, where a camel was loaded with straw until a single straw placed on the rest of the load broke its back.
  13. If you make a killing, you do something that makes you a lot of money.
  14. If two competitors or candidates, etc, are neck and neck, then they are very close and neither is clearly winning.
  15. If you’re on a roll, you’re moving from success to success.
  16. If you go out for a night out with lots of fun and drinking, you paint the town red.
  17. If someone’s as quiet as a mouse, they make absolutely no noise.
  18. Someone who starts life very poor and becomes rich goes from rags to riches.
  19. When all the best people, things or ideas and so on are used up and people try to make do with what they have left, they are scraping the barrel.
  20. If you take a leaf out of someone’s book, you copy something they do because it will help you.
  21. If you are feeling a bit ill, sad or lack energy, you are under the weather.
  22. A vicious circle is a sequence of events that make each other worse- someone drinks because they are unhappy at work, then loses their job… ‘Vicious cycle’ is also used.
  23. If something belongs to the past and isn’t important or troubling any more, it is water under the bridge.
  24. If something is x-rated, it is not suitable for children.
  25. This idiom means that if you do something for me, I’ll return the favour. You scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours.
  26. This is used to tell someone to be quiet. Zip it.
Posted in Games

Game: Alphabet Quiz

Image credit: www.20minutos.es

Follow me on twitter @RobbioDobbio

This is a trivia game designed for teenage pre-intermediate (B1) students that could also be used with adults. I have also created a slightly easier set of questions for kids,and a harder version for adults. Credit to my colleague Peter Rassa for the idea. The game is similar to the gameshow “Pasaparabla” on Spanish television. You will need the lesson plan with the question sheet:

Alphabet Quiz

Alphabet Quiz Kids version

Az quiz hard version

Procedure

Write the alphabet on the board, if you’re feeling really creative you can do it in a circle as shown in the picture above. Quickly recap the letters that often cause your students problems. It varies from place to place but in Spain they struggle with J, G, E, I, Q, W, and Y.

Quickly recap the letters that often cause your students problems. It varies from place to place but in Spain they struggle with J, G, E, I, Q, W, and Y.

Write all your students’ names on the board in a list.

Choose a player to go first, explain to them that you are going to ask them a question, the answer to the question begins with the letter A. They have two options: they can attempt to answer the question or they can say “pass”. If they choose to answer and they get it right, they get 1 point but if they get it wrong they lose 1 point. If they choose to pass, then it is the next student’s turn but the next student is asked the “B” question. You continue like this through the list of questions, every time a question is answered correctly you cross that letter out from the list on the board. When you reach the end of the list (the “Z” question) you then return to the top of the list and work your way through any questions which were not answered the first time around.

NOTE: It is important that students don’t shout out the answers to the questions if it’s not their turn as that question could be revisited later.

The winner is the student with the most points when all the questions have been answered or at the end of a set time limit.

Credit to: http://www.sporcle.com/user/QuizzleMyShizzle/games for most of the quiz questions.

Questions:

  1. What’s the largest reptile in North America? Alligator
  2. What’s the biggest animal in the world? Blue Whale
  3. What’s the capital of Venezuela? Caracas
  4. What’s the name of the headmaster of Hogwarts in the Harry Potter books? Dumbledore
  5. North, South, _______, West, what’s missing? East
  6. Who was the lead singer of the band Queen? Freddie Mercury
  7. What metal does the symbol Au represent on the periodic table? Gold
  8. Which characters in Greek mythology did 12 impossible tasks? Hercules
  9. Tony Stark is the alta-ego of which superhero? Ironman
  10. Which Italian football club based in Turin wears black and white stripes? Juventus
  11. What’s the tallest mountain in Africa? Kilimanjaro
  12. Which singer’s real name is Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta? Lady Gaga
  13. Oktober fest is a beer festival which happens in which European city? Munich
  14. Which tennis player won 9 French open titles between 2005 and 2014? Rafa Nadal
  15. What sea creature with 8 legs is eaten in parts of Spain and Portugal? Octopus
  16. Who is the president of Russia? Vladimir Putin
  17. What is the capital of Ecuador? Quito
  18. Which famous singer from the Caribbean has the surname Fenty? Rihanna
  19. Which actress plays Bella Swan in the Twilight series? Kristen Stewart
  20. What historical region of Romania is considered the home of Dracula? Transylvania
  21. 1930, what country hosted and won the first football world cup? Uruguay
  22. What’s the smallest country in the world? Vatican city
  23. What is the name of the cowboy in the Toy Story films? Woody
  24. Cyclops, Iceman and Wolverine are member of which superhero group? X-men
  25. What’s the name of New Yorks most famous baseball team? Yankees
  26. What is the name of the scientific study of animals? Zoology

 

Kids’ Version

  1. What’s the largest reptile in North America? Alligator
  2. What’s the biggest animal in the world? Blue Whale
  3. What’s the biggest country in North America? Canada
  4. What’s the name of the headmaster of Hogwarts in the Harry Potter books? Dumbledore
  5. North, South, _______, West, what’s missing? East
  6. Which famous pink bird lives in Africa and South America? Flamingo
  7. What type of medal does the winner get at the Olympic games? Gold
  8. What’s the name of the famous Greek hero from the Disney film? Hercules
  9. Tony Stark is the alta-ego of which superhero? Ironman
  10. Which Italian football club based in Turin wears black and white stripes? Juventus
  11. What’s the tallest mountain in Africa? Kilimanjaro
  12. Which singer’s real name is Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta? Lady Gaga
  13. Alex the lion, Marty the zebra and Melman the giraffe are characters in which film? Madagascar.
  14. Which tennis player won 9 French open titles between 2005 and 2014? Rafa Nadal
  15. What sea creature with 8 legs is eaten in parts of Spain and Portugal? Octopus
  16. What is Spiderman’s real name? Peter Parker
  17. Who lives in Buckingham Palace? Queen Elizabeth the 2nd
  18. Which famous singer from the Caribbean has the surname Fenty? Rihanna
  19. Who sang the songs “I Kissed a Girl” and “Roar”? Katy Perry
  20. What historical region of Romania is considered the home of Dracula? Transylvania
  21. 1930, what country hosted and won the first football world cup? Uruguay
  22. What’s the smallest country in the world? Vatican city
  23. What is the name of the cowboy in the Toy Story films? Woody
  24. Cyclops, Iceman and Wolverine are member of which superhero group? X-men
  25. What’s the name of New Yorks most famous baseball team? Yankees
  26. Which princess does Link rescue in the Nintendo computer games? Zelda
Posted in Conversation Classes, Exam Preparation Class, Games

Game: Just a Minute/Blockbusters Mash-up

Image credits: www.bbc.co.uk and www.youtube.com

Follow me on twitter @RobbioDobbio

I’m running the Barcelona Half-Marathon dressed as David Bowie to raise money for Cancer Research, sponsor me here:

https://www.justgiving.com/Timothy-Warre/

This is a game that can be adapted for a range of levels. I thought it up specifically for students to practice for the FCE/CAE/CPE speaking part 1, in which candidates must give complete answers to a series of interview style questions.

You will need Adam Simpson’s amazing blockbusters powerpoint game which you can download here. You will also need a list of typical Cambridge exam questions which you can download below. Alternatively, for non-exam classes, you can play the game with the “Just a minute” topic cards also included below with the class procedure and rules.

Class procedure and rules

Typical Cambridge Exam Questions

just a minute

Class Procedure and Rules

Divide the class into two teams, orange and green, show the blockbusters power point. The green team’s objective is to make a line of tiles from left-to-right across the board, while the orange team has to do the same but from top-to-bottom.

Teams claim a tile by speaking about a topic for a minute with no hesitation, repetition or deviation. For lower levels you could change the time limit to 30 seconds and be more lenient with hesitation repetition and deviation. Students nominate one member of their team to go first.

The team decides which tile they want to try to claim. The teacher chooses a question from the list or a topic from the “Just a Minute” topic cards. The student must then speak for a minute about the topic, if they hesitate, repeat themselves or deviate from the topic the teacher stops the stop-watch and a member of the opposing team can try to talk for the rest of the minute to claim the tile for their team.

Useful language

Time buyers

Well, let me see…

That’s an interesting question…

Rephrasing/Clarifying

What I’m trying to say is…

What I want to say is…

I mean…

Discourse markers

Obviously,

Sadly,

(un)Fortunately,

Probably the (most important)…

etc.

Topic nomination

Speaking of…, … (Speaking of living abroad, my sister is currently living in…

That reminds me…

Before I forget…

Addition

What’s more…

Also…

On top of that…

Besides that…

… as well.

Just a Minute Topic Cards

The best advice my parents ever gave me. The best day of my life. Being an only child Albert Einstein
My favourite dessert Falling in love The most annoying thing in the world

 

My favourite toys as a child.
The worst thing about living in Barcelona My most embarrassing moment My favourite hobby How to cook the perfect paella
Bullfighting

 

 

Making a cup of tea Learning to drive Chocolate
Things that make me angry Weddings What I was like as a child. cheating
Don Quixote

 

Breakfast The best way to propose to your boyfriend / girlfriend Red wine
Beer English tourists Real Madrid Crocodiles

 

 

Ghosts and the supernatural

 

The pope Going to the dentists Buying a new car.