lunes, 30 de abril de 2012

Dice dice baby.

Have you ever played Russian Roulette? Slept rough in Paris? Worked as a spy?*

Sadly, questions like this rarely appear in oral exams, but the structure abounds. And it's frequent enough as a conversation starter in real life. (You remember real life... those disorientating moments when you're neither teaching nor sleeping...? No? Well never mind. It abounds in oral exams.)

If you have a dice and a cup, you might want to try this game out.

Write or project up the following expressions:

1. No, I haven't had the chance.
2. I'd be a bit scared, actually.
3. Oh, yes, lots of times.
4. I couldn't afford it.
5. Once or twice.
6. I'm not really into that kind of thing.

(Here, maybe drill for pronunciation)

This is how it works:

Student A takes the dice and shakes it in the cup. She slams it down and looks at the number, keeping it secret. Her objective is to ask the student on her left a have-you-ever question, and elicit answer 4 from student B. He has to answer, choosing the phrase on the board which is closest to his own truth.

So if I throw a 2, and I know you're not very physical/sporty I might ask you:

Have you ever tried boxing?


Have you ever been go-karting?

...and I hope you'll answer "I'd be a bit scared, actually."

And it's simply a question of going round the group and awarding points.

The nice thing about this is that it offers an insight into your students likes, interests and experiences. You may be able to use these affordances in future lessons.


This game can also be used with the structure "Would you like to...?" or "Do you ever...?", which also feature frequently in oral exams.

* PS: I have done ONE of these three.

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