Looking for Activities to Teach the Eigo Note?

Below are activities used in the EigoNoto.com lesson plans. Most require no materials or preparation! Several of the activities have video explanations in Japanese.
Take some time to look around- there's a lot more than just activities at EigoNoto.com!

Janken or Rock-Paper-Scissors

Janken 4's -No materials or preparation! -日本語のビデオ説めもある

THE warm-up activity beginning all of the EigoNoto.com lessons. Works for any language pattern- Teaches conversation skills, too! See an in-class explanation on video

Janken Conversation Rounds -No materials or preparation!

*This activity was chosen by a group of elementary teachers as the main activity for their English classes. It is the best way to teach and practice Conversation Skills. It can be used for meaning- or pattern-focus, and for all of the language structures.

Maru-Batsu (O/X) Game -No materials or preparation!

EigoNoto.com version of the classic Japanese game. Very powerful learning activity.

Hot Potato -No materials or preparation!

A small group creative substitution activity.

Get The Picture (GTP)

see an in-class explanation on video

Pair Karuta -No materials or preparation!

A very simple version of the classic game.

Interview Bingo

see an in-class explanation on video


Eraser/Keyword Game

Pair listening activity from the Eigo Noto text.

Ohajiki Game

Listening activity from the Eigo Noto text. A blend of Bingo & Karuta...


My version of the classic game. NOW it's really communicative! With a link to download the board.

Row Practice/Row Races -No materials or preparation!

Find 3 People -No materials or preparation!

Find 3 People-Tell the Teacher -No materials or preparation!

Liar! Liar! -No materials or preparation!

Hand Sandwich -No materials or preparation!

A fun way to finish off a pair activity (with a winner & loser).

Clue Bingo

Pair Slap -No materials or preparation!

Individual Student Translation

Short notes on how to lessen the stress...

Hebi Janken

Teams compete to get to the end of the line of vocabulary cards first.

Dictionary -(can be done with) No materials or preparation!

Builds an important skill for language learners- how to say a word they don't know!

Pictionary -(can be done with) No materials or preparation!

Builds an important skill for language learners- how to draw a word they don't know!

Gestionary -(can be done with) No materials or preparation!

Builds an important skill for language learners- how to act out a word they don't know!

WYAN- Word You Aleady Know. Students already know a lot of English words- prompt them to tell you what they already know!

Listen, Repeat and Point- Turn on students' power to remember.

Repeat and Change the Pattern Speaking- No materials or preparation!

A simple activity to help students perform short speeches.

Interactive Introduction- No materials or preparation!

A simple step-by-step way to introduce new language patterns. You do the speaking, the students learn the rest as a class.

Drawing an Explanation One Line at a Time- for Grade 5 Lesson 7 What's This?

Black Box Activity Adaptation- Let's all the kids participate, not just one at a time. For Grade 5 Lesson 7

Story Telling in Rounds

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Gr. 5-7 What’s This? Lesson Notes  


Lesson Focus- speaking/conversational ability
EigoNoto.com Additions: word families; I don’t know.; What’s this OO?
Conversation Skills: Production & comprehension of meaning using gestures, natural & man-made sounds, drawing and oral description/paraphrasing (describing something without using the unknown/secret word); Word Families.
Additional/Alternate Activities: Interview Bingo, Pictionary (a variation), Dictionary, GTP (Get The Picture) and Black Box pair adaptation.

    Lesson 7 targets a very important question for beginning language learners: “What’s this?”. This very simple question empowers one to learn new words naturally using conversation (ie., not by studying).

It is an obvious fact that the words a new learner doesn’t know far outnumber the words the learner knows; the importance of this question cannot be emphasized enough.  But like too much of English education, this question -really just a language tool- is taught without something very important.  Students also need to be empowered to use it with skills and strategies.  In addition to the ability to ask ‘What’s this?’, the ability to produce AND comprehend answers using a variety of strategies is also very important to language learners at all levels.
    Considering these points, I think there are several ways the contents of Eigo Noto Lesson 7 can be improved. In terms of developing students’ speaking ability, too many of the activities are full-group activities.  Many or most students soon fail to say or repeat ‘What’s this?’ during these kind of whole-class activities. To insure students practice saying ‘What’s this?’ as much as possible, I have included a pair conversation activity in each of the EigoNoto.com lessons.
    In terms of comprehensive ability, the Eigo Noto lesson activities include visual clues (pointing to parts of pictures, looking at silhouettes) and touching/tactile clues (feeling objects hidden inside a box).  As humans, we have 5 senses; these activities don’t include clues via hearing, taste or smell. A hearing-based activity is included in the EigoNoto.com lessons.  If a teacher would bring, or ask students to bring, objects that have characteristic tastes or smells, these could easily be included in the activities as well (blindfold a student, then place something under his nose, or in her mouth. Or for a bigger challenge, try pinching someone’s nose and then placing something in their mouth.).
    Why is it important to focus on learning via the 5 senses?  There are many reasons discussed in pedagogical theory; however, 2 suffice to convince me.  As humans most of us have 5 ways of perceiving the world- sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch. It is common, however, that each of us is stronger in some of the senses than the others (which is/are yours?).  So I think is it very important for students to be able to practice perceiving the world around them in as many ways as possible; not only in the ways they may already be strong at, but also to exercise their weaker perceptive abilities in order to strengthen them. (As a direct corollary, you can also think about this in the way that you do demonstrations in the classroom.  Does your style of demonstration allow as many students as possible to be able to understand you? Do your demonstrations target only one or two methods of comprehension?)
    The same simple reasoning can be applied when considering expressive abilities as well.  And in practical terms of conversation, pointing with your finger, or drawing a picture to describe something while talking on the telephone just doesn’t work.  So empowering students to use as many tools as possible to become competent communicators no matter what the situation becomes a very real, practical goal.
    To this end the lessons have also included gestures, sounds, drawing pictures and paraphrasing skills (done in Japanese at this level, but directly transferable to any language) in Lesson 7. From Lesson 6, lessons began introducing the concept of Word Families (red, blue, green = COLOR), and continue to practice this in Lesson 7.
    With a little imagination it should be very easy in these lessons to engage even the most disinterested student.  The Pictionary, Dictionary, and other games are perennial favorites in my classes.  If you haven’t tried them before, you’re in for some great language learning fun!
    The content as I’ve described it for Lesson 7 is really, for me, the essence of communication. As such, this proves to me again that the Eigo Noto lessons can be a great shell within which to develop lessons and lesson plans that allow us to teach not only language but also language- and communication- skills, the keys to Life Long Learning.
    I try to remember what Ben Franklin said: ‘Give a man a fish, and he’ll eat for a day. Teach a man to fish, and he’ll eat for a lifetime.

Gr. 5-7 What’s This? Lesson NotesSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

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