Theme 4: Teenage Life
Topic 3: My School and Friends
Lesson 6: Timetable Battleships
Author: Ian Garner
This lesson covers many key grammatical concepts and the teacher can choose which particular area to focus on. This year my students were practicing how to ask and answer questions in the third person and so I designed the activity with this in mind. The game also allows the students to practice using the prepositions 'at' and 'on' when discussing the time/day of an activity.
During the 'activate' phase of the lesson we first review how to say the times and days of the week. I draw attention to the fact that the teacher on the PPT is the 'third person'. On the whiteboard we construct a question...
"Does he teach PE at 8:10am on Wednesdays?" The students copy this question into their notebooks and then I ask them to also write their answer.
We check the answer together - "No, he doesn't"
Next, the students are asked... "What does he teach?" ... They write their answers.
I write the correct answer "He teaches English".
It is now very easy to focus the students on the grammar point of the lesson and what I expect to hear as they play the game.
This game is played in groups of four with 2 players on each team. My seating plan ensures that any low ability students are paired with a high ability classmate whom I encourage to provide assistance as and when required. To further help the lower ability students, the game cards include all the vocabulary that they will need to participate in the activity.
The actual game will last in the region of 20 minutes and the students will be speaking and actively listening for the entirety. Teachers can circulate and listen for any mistakes. I find that many students struggle with saying 'teaches' (they say teachs) and also some students get confused with 'Tuesday' and 'Thursday'.
Students will not all finish the game at the same time and so when a group has finished I ask them to complete the three questions on the PPT.
The first question is a translation whereby the students should notice when they write their answers that English is the opposite of Chinese
(English = at... on.../ Chinese = on...at...).
Questions 2 adds a level of complexity as I have added the question word 'when'.
For question 3 students will are required to change 'have' to 'has' in the third person.
Obviously at the end of the lesson we will refer back to the lesson objectives before reviewing the answers and checking the key areas that mistakes are often made.