Theme: History Language Narrative Tenses Vocabulary for historical events Level: Elementary and above (adjust language to level Time: 45 minutes – longer if using extensions Materials: 2 sets of Cuisenaire Rods 'Norman Conquest' Worksheet Organisation: Horse-shoe – no desks.

1. Set the chairs up in a horse-shoe. Do not have students sitting behind their desks. You WILL kill the lesson. It is important that they can see the rods and that they are close to the action. If you don't believe me, try it! 2. Tell the class that the lesson is about an important event in British history and elicit suggestions from the class. If anyone offers 1066 and the Battle of Hastings, invite them to tell the class what they know of it. If no-one knows tell them! It is a good idea to warn the class that there will be a lot of listening, to you, but there will be opportunities for the to speak. However, if they have any questions, just ask. If they don't understand anything, ask. If you are speaking too quickly, tell you to slow down, or vice-versa. But, most importantly, sit back, get comfortable, relax, and just enjoy the ride! 3. Lay out a rough outline of the south and east of England (from Plymouth to Scotland) using the orange rods on the floor and elicit suggestions from class as to what it might be. 4. Lay out rough outline of northern Europe using the black rods (Normandy to Norway) and elicit. 5. Hold up a red rod and tell the class that this is YOU (the students). Tell the class: your name is Harold Godwin. You are a very rich, powerful man. You own a lot of the south of England (gesture). You have a large moustache. You are the Earl of Wessex. You want to be King. 6. Ask the students to point to London. Place a green rod (Edward the Confessor – King of England) with a small white rod (his crown) in London and lay it flat – not standing. Elicit from the class who this is. Ask them if he is standing (no) and why (ill / dying). Explain to the class that the King is dying but he doesn't want you to be king. He wants this man – hold up a yellow rod – to be king. Place the yellow rod in Normandy. Tell the class that his name is William and he is the Duke of Normandy. If the class ask you why, explain that at this time the French, Normans at least, had considerable influence in the English court (rather like America today) and that William was very close to the Pope. He even wore a hair of St. Paul around his neck, a present from the Pope. Ask the class how they (Harold) feel about this (annoyed / jealous / threatened / worried / angry). Explain that history is history and it's never this simple. Hold up a brown rod. Tell the class that his name is Harald Hardrada. He is the King of Norway and he also wants to be King of England. (If they ask why - he only

Ask them what they think will happen next – invade / attack. Tell the class that they send a spy to France to keep an eye on William. Then march south to meet William. But. You (Harold) rushes to London. Re-fill the ranks. Tell them that they stop in London and gather support. (If they ask – Tostig was the Earl of Northumberland and was extremely unpopular due to being a southerner and rather fond of taxes. Then. You meet Tostig and Hadrada south of York. very nice man. and Harald Hardrada are both killed (this marks the end of the Vikings). Ask them who they think will invade first – don't accept or refuse any suggestions. It's an easy win. Hadrada's army are enjoying the sun.“What are these?” Answer – his army (about 7. it wasn't called Battle then. Senlac Hill was c. 5 days. The date – September 25 th 1066. Tostig's supporters were killed and he was outlawed. 275 feet above sea level. Aren't the French so nice? He shows him – lay down three or four long blue rods . ask them what to do about William. you march south to London. Tostig. Then March north. 12. Blah. Another 5 days. There was a rebellion. He takes him around his beautiful country. For continuity's sake make the last question “What was the name of the battle here – point to Stamford bridge. blah. Move Harald Hardrada to the north of England and tell them that he invades first with the help of – hold up a dark green rod – this man. 7. Tostig accused Harold of instigating the rebellion. Harold was sent to negotiate with them. you persuade him to make you king (we don't know how). eyes on the throne. Lay out a line of orange rods. January 5th 1066 – Edward is very ill. You arrive first. Move spy north.. blah. (just watch their faces – you'll tell if they've got . Tostig.move the white rod across the Channel and ask “Who is he?' Answer .) 9. It is a surprise attack. He dies later in the day and you are crowned king of England in Westminster Abbey on January 6 th. rid himself of his troublesome brother. back to more pressing matters – Hardrada in the north. The Battle of Stamford bridge ensues. What a very. (Harold Godwinson's army are heavily armed and Hadrada's lightly armed and are waiting for re-inforcements but they come to late). Ask the class – What are you going to do? They'll probably say fight Harald Hardrada and if they do. Tell the class that he is your brother. Point to Pevensey Bay (Note – most historians now dispute Pevensey Bay as William's landing point as it was mostly marsh land and unsuitable for an invasion force to land on. Move Harold to London. Ask the class how they feel (ecstatic / over the moon etc. Hardrada and Tostig destroy York. 8. Go back to the spy. Have a quick re-cap of the events. very. “What do you think William does with the spy?” They'll probably say kill him. Clear away the rods. It's worth mentioning how close it is to Eastbourne. For now. Tell them that this is their army. The leaders of the rebellion went to London to meet with Edward the Confessor. It's called Battle after the Battle. It's worth pointing out that the Battle of Hastings never happened in Hastings.) How do William and Harald feel about this? (annoyed / jealous / William probably feels betrayed). You take up position on the ridge (explanation will help here) of Senlac Hill (It was originally known in English as Santlache ("Sandy Stream"). Harold. eating and relaxing after destroying York. which the Normans punned into Sanguelac ("Blood Lake") which was then shortened to Senlac: thus Senlac Hill is the commonly held name for the high ground defended by the English army.had a vague claim to the throne through his nephew – but Harold Godwinson's and William's were also vague). Before Edward dies. Put Harold behind them. You are now Harold II. Tell the class that you'll return to the spy in a minute. Answer – hold up a white rod . Wrong! He takes the spy on a holiday. Who won? Then explain that as the battle ended you heard that William had invaded on the south coast of England. 10. before the top of the ridge was leveled off to create Battle Abbey) It's about 6 miles / 10 km north of Hastings.a spy ( a little James Bond mime helps here. 11. “What does he do next?” Answer – sends the spy back to England (move spy to England) “Why?” So he can tell you (Harold). It happened in Battle.500 men). Your brother. Tell the class that William discovers the spy.

Ask the class who has the better position – answer – Harold because he is on the top of the hill. lay out a line of long blue rods – two rows deep. Say to the class However. to write the names in the correct spaces for questions a. It started with William instructing his archers to fire at Harold's army (shoot some white rods at the orange line). Harald Hardrada. However. instead use 'you'.i etc. you and your students will enjoy this lesson. William repeats this feigned withdrawl several times – repeat this using the rods and each time have an orange rod 'massacred'. alone or in pairs. 17.c. Harold at the top and William at the bottom. He tells his archers to fire straight up instead of straight at Harold's army (mime helps) the archers fire off their arrows .d.it). The students are now dead. swords and spears but no archers or cavalry. the battle is still at a stalemate. and parallel to the orange rods. it can be comforting for the teacher to be at the front of the class 'teaching'. The personalisation helps too. Elicit from the class what's happening.demonstrate with a white rod. and I am confident that. Hand out the Worksheet 'The Norman Conquest '. William had something you don't (mime / elicit) archers. He then charged up the hill but Harold's army threw down rocks and spears. More extroverted students still have the . it brings it to life and involves the students in the lesson. Christmas Day 1066 – William is crowned King of England in Westminster Abbey. it is important to remember that it is the teacher. (for your information – the fighting didn't stop there – it continued for a further two weeks or so. The orange rod is killed – put it back in the box. But. try not to refer to Harold as Harold.b. Ask the students to insert the correct names in the spaces for the following questions e. William has an idea. In front of. Past Continuous and Past Perfect. The rods certainly help to paint a picture of the story. He is now known as William the Conqueror. William is victorious. It works on many different levels. 13. 18. you. it had little effect. Again.h. Whole class feedback. towards the end of the day. and those used to a transmission method of teaching. 14. William sees this and sends some of his soldiers to assist – move another blue rod over and make it sandwhich / surround the orange rod. The Dark ages end and we are now in the Middle ages. 20. It is rich in vocabulary and there is plenty of scope for further practice and consolidation of narrative tenses: Past Simple. Rationale and Notes I hope. Then. Mimes and a little humour help too. Put a little white crown on his head. However. 15. Whole class feedback. and you have to bring iit to life. William and Edward the Confessor – on the white board. Put William behind them. and (mime / elicit) cavalry. To further involve the students. you can invite and direct them to move the people and things around. Then a group of French had had enough and broke off – move one blue rod away. Ask them – what happens next? Answer – Harold's army lose heart at the death of their king and flee – they are chased and killed by the Normans – demonstrate. The battle started at nine o'clock on the morning of October 14 th 1066. Drink some water! 19. William waits in Hastings for the English Earls and Dukes to come and surrender to him (demonstrate if you so wish) 16. Invite the students.f. three columns. The rods can'r do all the work. For the quieter students. But.g. You had (mime/elicit) infantry with shields. This is William's army. Harold's soldiers see this and rush down the 'hill' to attack them – move one orange rod down the 'hill'. Harold is killed. but it is generally considered that October 14 th was the day that William won). that tells the story. No success. Write the names of the four key players – Harold Godwinson. Harold looks up and an arrow strikes him in the eye – demonstrate with the rods and mime.

Writing – Students write a letter from Tostig to Hardrad asking for his help. 3. showing him his army etc. it is important to ask the class questions 'What do you think happens next? / What's this? / Who's this? / How does he feel? Etc. Tostig and Harald Hardrada . You could try and do it on the board but colour can be limiting and you'll find that you are constantly rubbing things out. Different outcomes .)This role-play could be done in threes.english-heritage. William and the Spy . 2. Finally.opportunity to speak and 'stand out'.http://www. but no-one knows for sure.uk/server/show/nav. This can include a possible follow up of reported speech (forced / threatened / said/ mentioned etc.wikipedia. Extensions 1.Tostig asking Harald to support him. positive teacher talking time. As with all stories.http://en. Edward. It is believed that Tostig sailed to Norway.wikipedia.http://en. Students that I have done this with have all responded positively to this.org/wiki/William_the_Conqueror The Battle of Hastings .http://en. Speaking .http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harald_III_of_Norway Tostig Godwinson .http://en.org/wiki/Edward_the_Confessor Harold Godwinson .http://en.org/wiki/Battle_of_Hastings The Battle of Stamford Bridge . Harold and an aide to Edward who simply listens and reports back to the class how Harold persuaded Edwad to make him king.wikipedia. Re-tell .14113 . you told one story but but each student will go away having experienced it differently to the others.Get the students to tell the story back to you.Harold trying to persuade Edward to let him be his successor. Further reading Edward the Confessor . Possible scenarios could include: Harold and Edward on his death bed . Unanimously agreed that it was far more interesting than if they had read about it. or tell another story. What would've happened if. they have all said that the rods helped them to understand and follow the story.. If you bring the class together to re-tell it they'll have to work together. Leave it a couple of days.wikipedia. In the feedback sessions.org/wiki/Battle_of_Stamford_Bridge Battle Abbey . 4. if you decide to do this.org/wiki/Tostig_Godwinson William the Conqueror .wikipedia. don't do it straight away. Secondly.org/wiki/Harold_Godwinson Harold Hardrada . The Spy and Harold – The spy returns from France and spills the beans.William showing the spy around France. practice first! I think this is a good example of constructive.http://en. But.You could explore different outcomes with the class.org. Therefore.wikipedia.Pause at specific eevnts in the story and ask the students to act out / role-play the conversations.. they will all rember different parts of the story.

Teachers' own true life stories Acknowldgement I would love to claim credit for this but I learnt this from Jim Scrivener whilst attending an English UK Conference in London 2008... The lives of other Kings and Queens – Henry VIII c. Birth of nations – Pilgrims to America d. mumbling and return it to the box. It doesn't necessarily have to be colour. . Talk for a few minutes – enough to give your students a good example. Stories in the news – The missing canoeist e. Many thanks! This is my. shake your head. pick up a _____ coloured rod and begin to tell the class about the person or animal you associate with that particular rod. I often use one of the magenta ones and explain to the class how it reminds me of my daughter – her bedroom walls are very similar in colour. 2. Open the box of Cuisenaire rods and pick up one rod. Fairy tales – Cinderella / Little Red Riding Hood b. Don't be frightened off going off on tangents. World folk stories f. 3. it could be size. Put the students in groups of 3s or 4s and ask them to share their person with the group. Invite the students to come to the front of the class and choose a rod that reminds them of someone. put it back.Variations The same procedure lends itself to other stories such as: a. pick up another. explaining why they chose that particular rod. Theme: Close friends and family Language: Vocabulary for describing people Various tenses Time: 20 minutes Level: Any Age: Any Materials: Students One set of rods Procedure 1. Finally. Biographies – Martin Luther King / Princess Diana g.

if they have understood any of the vocabualry. and so on. Notes It might be necessary to explain to the class why they are using the rods. a lot of students enjoy fiddling with things. Put students into groups – 3 or 4 students per group. Explain that they are going to re-read the article and use the rods to tell the story which they will then share with the rest of the class. When they have all finished 'constructing' their stories. Move to the next group. 8. 2. using the rods.4. Newspapers can be same or different. Once they have a article they should quickly read through it and answer the following questions: Who? / What? Where? When? Why? And possibly How? 5. Firstly. Also. For example. 10. the rods will help them to remember the story / events and the order in which they happened. 7. it will help the listeners deal with any unknown vocabulary whilst the story is being re-told. and gather the studnets around their table. Lastly. Optional extension of work on idioms / metaphors of colour. 6. how they use the rods and the 'images' they create will show to you. The group. Invite a few students to share anything they've learnt from their fellow classmates Feedback on language. tell their story to the class. the teacher. Monitor and make notes of any particularly good or bad language. if the article were about conjoined twins and the students have two white rods placed next to each other. 11. 6. Tell them they have 5 minutes to flick through the paper to find an article that interests them. Karen's Story Theme: Current Affairs Language: All and any – one big lucky dip Time: 60 – 90 minutes Level: Intermediate + Age: Adult Organisation: Pairs / Small Groups Materials: Newspapers – 1 per group 1 set of rods per group (if you don't have enough divide each set in half) Procedure 1. instruct them to leave their rods on their tables (some groups may have constructed elaborate scenes). Give each group a set of rods. Ask if any of the groups would like to go first. 7. Monitor and check and help where needed. 9. Give a newspaper to each group. 5. if not nominate / pick a name out of a hat etc. Secondly. 4. 3. . it is pretty clear they have understood the lexis.

7. making any necessary changes. preferably without looking at the original text. who listen and build a the new bar chart (tell the students not to dismantle their bar charts when they have finished – they'll need them for reference in step 6 and 7. 2. When both groups have finished. you will need 6 short texts. 5. This bar chart shows the number of teachers using rods Theme: Describing Bar Charts Time: 45 minutes Language: Vocabulary / Collocations to describe graphs Level: Intermediate Age: Adult Materials: Enough rods for students to accurately describe and re-create their bar charts Texts describing bar charts – enough so that each pair has a different text. . If you have 12 students. and how the students used the rods to represent it and you can review it in the next lesson / day by showing the class your reconstruction and see if any students can remember what it is. Pairs describe their bar chart to another pair. Students read the text and re-create it in full. Compare their version with the original text. Use the rods to review / recycle and elicit language used for describing bar charts. Pair off students and give out texts – one text per pair. behind a 'screen'. they can see each others bar charts and compare. 3. Organisation: Groups of 4 split into 2 pairs Procedure 1.Extension / Review Make a note of any particularly interesting or useful language that came up during the lesson. living 3D – secretly. Swap over and the listeners become speakers. Groups write a description of their new bar charts. 6. 8. 4.

2. 5. Check answers as normal. 6. 2. They must work through the worksheet and in pairs discuss and try to agree on the answers. a dark green and a magenta rod. Put the students into pairs (3s if necessary) and get them to compare their answers. display the answer for all to see.B. Give out the worksheet so that everyone has a copy and they then write in their answers – hopefully all correct (satuisfying for weaker students) . vocabulary or a reading exercise. Give out the rods and expalin the procedure (as above) to the students. clarifying and helping their partner where necessary. if there are 4 answers. or D? Theme: Multiple Choice checking Language: Whatever! Time: Depends Level: Any Age: Any Materials: A set of rods A multiple choice to check! Procedure 1. Give out and get the students to do the multiple choice questions like normal. 4.C. a blue. blue is answer B. but instead of saying the answer. However. if you so wish. green is answer C. Award a point for every correct answer. 4. For example. You can ask them to discuss number 1 first and give them a time limit before they show their answer or let them work through all the questions. You will use your rods to show / tell them the answer. give each group an orange. explaining. Give each pair / three the same rods and one set for yourself. 3. Tell them that orange is answer A. they should stand up the blue and lay the others flat.Is it A. If they think the answer to question 1 is B. it is best to jump around the answers and not do them in chronological order. Give out the multiple choice worksheet – whether it's grammar. Check as normal. 3. do it like this: 1. and magenta is answer D. When the students have finished give out either 3 or 4 rods to the students depending on how many multiple choice answers there are. If they have different answers get them to discuss and choose one final answer. Tell the students that they are not allowed to write anyhting on the paper. Give a point for every correct answer Variation Instead of giving the students the text to work through and then checking the answers.

. so if they are always forgetting the 's'. she will learn that it is 'He has black hair' and not 'He have black hair'. (don't let her choose orange – it's a real pain having the longest one in the palm of your hand for three hours every day!) 3. Explain that every time she makes this mistake you will hold out a red rod -she can choose the colour if your that type of teacher. who consistently make the same error over. white objects. 2. Rationale The student will learn to correct herself. Level: Any Age: Any Materials: One different coloured rod per student error For the student. and can never seem to remember the verb to be. and over. then choose the error that irritates you the most and concentrate on this. insist on using the base form 'go' regardless of the time they are speaking about. When she sees the rod. or students. Procedure 1. or develop a fear for small.He have black hair. Theme: Errors Language: Any – they can. This will only work for one of their errors. and over again. she should try and correct herself. Point out to little Maria the error of her ways: forgetting the 's' for example. Either way. do and will get anything and everything wrong! Time: Faster than you can say Maria I think you mean 'He HAS black hair.

(if you don't have enough rods simply let them keep the money – only take the money when they are incorrect. If they are correct give them money and if they are wrong. Give out worksheet as you would normally.My money's on false. When you come to check the answers give out the 'money'. 2. Assign a different value to each rod. and the shortest (whire) is £1 3. 4. So. the longest rod (orange) is £10. Theme: Grammar Auctions / Poker Time: 30 minutes – possibly more -I don't know Language: Anything you throw at them Level: All and sundry Age: Not for the littlest ones – gambling is wrong Materials: Grammar Auction worksheet 1 or 2 sets of rods Procedure 1. but instead of writing how much. Students bet on their answers in the same fashion. use the rods as chips. . take money. and by this I mean the rods.

. 4. adjusting it as necessary to your particular students. it lends itself to students doing role-plays as you go – at the check-in desk / immigration etc.. It's best to start at the front door. Weddings.orange works best as they are the longest.An Englishman's house is his castle. Theme: Houses Language: There is / are Vocabulary for houses / furniture Prepositions of place Level: Beginner to Pre-Intermediate Age: Any Time: 20 minutes Organisation: Whole class around table Materials: 1 set of rods (2 if you live in a very big house and / or have a lot of furniture Procedure 1. 2. Group the students around the table. You can choose how accurate to make it and what vocabualry to teach.. Re-cycle the language. For example. Elicit what it is and then proceed to walk them through the house eliciting the vocabulary as you go along – use the rods to help with this and mime.. Variations This works well with many forms of situationally rich themes and topics. 3. . Lay out the floor plan for the ground floor . Give the rods to the students who descibe a typical wedding ceremony in their own countries.Use the rods to descibe a typical Western wedding ceremony. If you do airports. journeys – you can describe your last holiday – set off at eight o'clock – arrived at the airport – checked in – put my luggage on the scales – passport control – departure lounge etc etc..

MA . Continue with a new student and a new word. the student should do this: 5. Give out a handful of rods to each team. The first student with the correct answer wins a point for her team. 3. 6. So.tion Theme: Word or sentence stress Language: Recently studied words / sentence patterns Level: Any Age: Any Time: 10 minutes Materials: One set of rods List of words Blu-Tac – a little stuck to each rod Organisation: Two teams Procedure 1. Prepare a list of recently studied words.in – for . If. for example. Call out a word and one student from each team runs to the board and sticks the rods on the board representing the stress pattern. . if the longest word has 5 syllables. Divide the class into two teams. you called out 'information'. give them 5 rods (same colour is fine – but don't use white) 4. You will need to give a rod for every syllable. 2.

4.C.out a rough floor plan of a room in a house on a piece of A4– students could copy this from the board on to A4.B. It's quicker and easier to move the rods than to rub-out and re-draw it.D 7. 11.. 6. The A-group describe their room to the Bs. Optional – write a description of the room. 2. check and help – make a note of good and bad language.. Groups have a look at each others' rooms and check. 12. Set a time-limit of about 5 minutes for this. When group A and C have finished – swap over 10. When they have finished assign each group a letter – A.It's in the corner!!!! Theme: Houses Language: There is /are Prepositions of place Furniture vocabulary Level: Beginner – Pre-Intermediate Age: Any Materials: Photocoied basic floor plan As many rods as you can get your hands on Organisation: Divide the class into either 2 groups or 4 – maximum of 4 per group. Monitor. Send each group to a different room of the classroom. 9. Procedure 1. 3. Rationale Using the rods avoids any complaints from students who can't draw.. Group C describes their room to group D.. Divide the class into pairs / small groups – you'll need an even number of groups. Tell them to use the rods to 'furnish' a room – they can choose whatever room they like. 13. Monitor. . 5. Give out rods – half a box to each pair / three. Include basic things like windows and doors. Feedback. 8. Hand. but make sure they all have the same version.

Work through 'o'clock. Procedure 1. mingle and find their partner. If you have 10 students. 2. . They can then make a time and test their partner. 2. 5. Arrange the hours. Select rods. 'past' etc. you will need: 2 blue rods. use 3 of one colour. 7. 2x yellow / 2x blue etc. the yellow rod for the hour hand and the orange rod for the minute hand. Tell the pairs to make a clock. 3.) for every pair of students.. WOLF Theme: Time Language: Telling thetime Level: Beginner / Elementary Age: Any Materials: 2 / 3 sets of rods Procedure 1. and elicit the time. 3. Who's my partner? Aim: To allow the chance for students to work with different partners Time: 2 minutes Level: Any Age: Any Materials: 1 pair of rods eg. 2 2 green rods and 2 black rods.eliciting and drilling. If you have an odd number of students. Students stand up. Make a circle using the white rods for the hours. 2 orange rods. When they have found their partner. Pair off the students. 4. 6. Instruct the students to make the time. 2 white rods. Group the students around a table. 'quarter'.WHAT'S THE TIME MR. Give out the rods randomly. they should sit down together.

or let the students decide. For example. Choose the groups yourself. They decide together. Ask the group to choose a team captain. Explain that they are going to have a competition – a speaking competition. relax and listen to group A. 4. making a sweeping 'horse-shoeish' shape with you at the front. Give each group a letter: four groups – one is A. you will take rods. Tell them that you will give each group a question and they will have one minute to come to a consensus on the answer. It should generate a little bit of language and discussion. 3. Expalin that the game has rules but you are not going to tell them. and so on. the other groups should simply sit back. Explain that it will be group A who will start. the next B. Get them to sit together in their groups. The questions You can grade the language of the questions to suit your learners. The next rule is very important – while group A are deciding together. The winners are the group with the fewest rods at the end of the game. you will give them rods. mention a colour or a number. if you are asking general knowledge questions it is best to use questions where the students can make an educated guess at. if they do things that you don't like. then B. Expalin that if they do something you like. and then C. They will learn the rules as they play the game. Divide the class into groups – 3 or 4 students per group. and finally it will be group Ds turn. However. but it is the job of the team captain to provide you / the class with the answer. However. which country in the world recieves the most foreign tourists (Answer- . Distribute 10 rods to each group – doesn't matter what colour.Variation Follow the steps as above but add an exta element to the activity by not allowing the students to see the rods. 2. serving as a warmer to the activity you have planned for them. They mustn't talk – only listen. Speaking Competition Theme: Various (see below) Language: Various (see below) Level: Elementary – Advanced Age: (teenage) Adult Time: 45 minutes (1 hour + with extension) Materials: Some questions (see below) 1 set of rods Organisation: Groups of three or four – not behind desk – preferably in the centre of the room Procedure 1.

The criteria This is the best bit! It can be absolutely anything – and is particularly suited to mixed-level classes: you just make it harder. choose sample Part 4.. or even Part 3 style questions. France. according to each student's abilities. Italy. take a rod! Correcting themselves Being honest and saying when they don't know something backing down / changing their mind / agreeing to disagree seeing that a member of the group doesn't understand and helping them Bad things (give a rod) being sloppy with their grammar when they should no better (depends on level. choose a student from a different group and ask them to discuss what she did for her last holiday (make sure none of the group are best friends with her).France)..really irrates me) . but most importantly there is the opportunity to support their suggestions. The wrong type of question would be who sang the song. For exam classes. Spain. or not – and thus doesn't give them the opportunity to speak. If there is one student whi is clearly listening with interest to the group that is speaking. For example. but you should expect everyone to say something) Moving their chairs in – making a nice. or easier. Here's a sample list: Good things (take a rod) • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • Making eye-contact with the group Everyone contributing (you can be more lenient on weaker students. Leaning in when people speak / listen Active listening – 'really' / nodding heads / etc.. less talkative students to speak Attentive listening – particularly for the listening groups. but an Upper-intermediate student who comes up with I go pub last night deserves to have two rods taken away) not listening to each other speaking over people no eye-contact not participating speaking while it's another group's turn instantly giving the answer to the teacher without discussing with the group captain not giving the answer not moving together / sitting in a line (sorry – pet hate . Sexy vocabualry – idioms / phrasal verbs / difficuly vocab (adjust expectations to level) Compex sentences Acuracy Range of vocabualry Making the group / class / you laugh Being interesting Intonation Stress Inviting other.. Asking the students a question about another student in the class can be particularly fruitful. tight group.(students will either know it. Japan would all be possible answers. and in particular FCE. Students can make a guess – the UK. America..

As strange as it sounds. mutter things about Zen and motor-cyles and journeys and tell them not to look at the finger or else they will miss all the heavenly beauty! Extension When you have finished. if he isn't listening and is staring into space. if a student in another group is talking and it's not his turn I will give out rods until he shuts up. rewarding way to provide students with feedback on their speaking and also works as a way of teaching/showing them what you. It deals both with linguistic competence and non-linguistic (body language/attitude) aspects of conversation and interaction. However. Notes / Warning Try and keep it light-hearted and fun! Not all students respond well to criticism and the nature of the beast noramally means they are the ones who will be receiving rods rather than giving! . However. or a future examiner. group A starting and then group B because I believe that the students need to learn to listen to each other. in the second round. what is important is the interaction – the group coming to a decision through negotiation and discussion. The students will probably notice this (competive aren't they) so I usually explain that the answer is not important and I couldn't really careless how high the average flea jumps on a hot summer's day. expects from them. the students can write up the things they should and shouldn't do – the rules. Likewise. it works best when you have smaller classes – 6-9 students – as the waiting time to speak is reduced. I will always give a rod. I tend to give out / take back the rods after their minute is up and whilst I am doing this.• if you ask a question which concerns a member of the class (What did Maria do last night?) and the captain only looks at you when he/she gives the final answer. For the first round of questions (one question per group) I usually take a rod for a 'correct' answer. I don't. At this point. I ask the class what they think they did right or wrong. Thus. you can go all misty-eyed. It's a funny idea I know! So. Why? Because I don't know the answer – why tell me! That's why I asked the question! Duh! (pet hate numer 2) The points and feedback I like it going round the class. but they could possibly learn something from their classmates. Rationale It's a fun. But.

95 – 18.98 http://wizardofmath.bebc.uk (just click on 'Buy online' and then put 'Cuisenaire rods' in the search box) Same as LTC's set Cambridge International Book Centre £12.uk £14.uk/Wooden_Educational_Cuisenaire-RodsIntroductory-Set-Wood.asp? gclid=CKDTtYGMo5cCFSIcEAodgho49g £19.bestilearnstore.uk/toys/wood-cuisenaire-rods-introductoryset.co.co.75 http://www.50 at http://www.asp? RefId=220&adid=LRRS11075 (wooden) £15.worldwideshoppingmall.50 http://www.htm? traffic_src=froogle&utm_medium=organic&utm_source=froogle-GB&id=uk £11.co.htm Bournemouth English Book Centre £14.co.68 http://www.eflbooks.95 http://www.com/CUISENAIRE-RODS-SMALL-GROUPWOOD/M/B000F8R5N2.auravita.ebay.Buy me now! £12.co.50 www.uk/cuisenaire-rods-125-c.co.lighthousetoys.com/products/aura/LRRS11075.uk Same as LTC's set .95 http://www.asp (in a horrible looking plastic tray) £13.

Cuisenaire Rods .

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