By teachers from the Escuela Oficial de Idiomas in Spain from their blog ‘Cosas que encuentro para clase’
As most of our readers know, this blog collects the reflections and material sharing of more than 100 ESL in Spain. This month we’ve been talking about Christmas activities and resources, and this is what we’ve created and found:
- Carlos Martín suggests an “express lipdub“. For this activity you only need a videocam (a mobile phone should be enough). The procedure is very easy: select a well-known Christmas song, divide your class in several groups and divide the song among the groups. Each group has to work on their part. Rehearse a couple of times and go!
- Segis suggests using this interactive book in our computer room. This activity is recommended for lower levels.
- Olenka Naranjo and Carlos Martín have discovered the section that ESL video has created especially for Christmas. Here you can find ready-to-use songs with activities.
- Liz Gallagher is going to use this idea seen on the website Breaking News English.
- This is the description shown on the website: Assign each student a different Xmas character. Tell them to mill around introducing themselves and comparing notes on what it’s like being who they are. Roles might include: Santa, a snowman, Rudolf the Red-nosed Reindeer, a North Pole penguin, the Xmas tree fairy, the Christmas turkey, one of the three wise men…any other characters related to your students’ cultures …(others I’ve just thought of are Bing Crosby singing White Christmas!).
- This is the follow-up Liz has prepared: Motivating questions to get them talking and sharing about their new role or even do a ‘ Who am I?’ with lower level classes.I might also ask them to try and find a fellow Christmas character that they might hang out with where they have to reason their choice for hanging out with such a character (eg. A Turkey and Rudolph ; ))!Also thought of putting a post-it with the name of the character on each student’s back and the others have to give them clues as to who they are and then they get into that role.
- Marta Fernández has discovered this wonderful activity on the British Council Facebook Page, though it’s been taken from the blog Leoxicon. The video is based on an extract of the film “Love Actually“. For those who know the film, it’s the part where Rowan Atkinson acts as a shop-assistant.
- Luis Msánchez has found this listening activity on the British Council site. It is a text that talks about what we don’t like about Christmas and can be the basis for a later debate in class. It has a B1 level, more or less, but can be used with higher levels with an appropriate follow-up.
- Carmen López suggests we can use this activity seen on Mikejharrison‘s site. As its author says, it was created for upper-intermediate students, but can be used with intermediate and advanced students too. It suggests the use of word clouds and a video about The Theft of a Snowman (click to see the activity on the original blog). This idea can be used with other videos or recordings.
- Eva Gutiérrez shared with us this lesson idea called Fairytale in New York from the blog Lessonstream.org, where Jamie Keddie publishes a lesson based on a song. But it’s not the typical activity of gap-filling, but a whole lesson where students have to tell a story. The lesson is appropriate for B1 students and above.
- Antonio Jiménez invites us to watch this video found on The English Blog, where Santa passes his chimney test. We can invite our students (B1 and above) to comment it. An additional idea could be wathching it without its sound first and try to elicit what’s going on.
- This is what I’m doing this year: I’m using this communicative activity called “Zen Christmas“, where students interact. I did it last year too and it can help you create a wonderful atmosphere. You can find all the information and materials clicking on the previous link. Apart from this, I like using Photopeach to celebrate as Christmas Card with my students, but it has many other uses.
- Apart from this, I would also recommend the visit to the blog ELTbites, where its creator invites teachers to share their own activities.
Can you recommend us any other activity? If so, we are pleased to add it to this post. Keep an eye on it, it wil be growing and growing.