Warm ups


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Warm-ups you can use in your ESL lessons or in your CLIL lessons.

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Warm ups

  1. 1. WARM-UP ACTIVITIES & LEAD-IN ACTIVITIES 1. WARM-UP ACTIVITIESThey can be used to energise the students or to calm them down. The most important thing is that they attract the attention ofthe students and prepares them for a classroom mood. Students have lots of things in their minds going on and we must find away to make them stop thinking about their problems and concentrate on what’s going in class.Warm-ups don’t need to have a link with the lesson. In fact, they are a good way to recycle grammar or vocabulary previouslyseenWhat’s most important is that they are low-demanding, easy to do and communicative. 1.1. The five minute interview.Students have a piece of paper with several beginning sentences. Here are some examples:If Iweren’t talking to you now I’d be…..I wish people would takemore notice of….In a nutshell, my philosophy is…..A phrase I use far too often is……I’m good at….I’d love to meet……The most surprising thing that has happened to me is…..My favourite English word is…….I’m very bad at…..The best age to be is……It works as if it was a speed-dating encounter. Students work in pairs and after five minutes they change partners! First theylisten, then they speak (or the other way round). * See Appendix: The 5 minute interview 1.2. No, but guess what? And Yes, and on top of that…If you had breakfast, raise your hand.If you had been to X before, turn roundIf you are ready to start, go to the centreA asks questions to B and B must always answer “yes”B asks questions to A and A must always answer “no”Then you do the same but the answers must be:No, but guess what….Yes, and on top of that….
  2. 2. 1.3. Counting from 1 to 8 and go back 1.4. Shout your questions and answers warm-upThis activity was introduced to me by Thomas, from Austria.Very energising warm-up. Students make two groups that will befacing each other but quite far away one from the other. Those who answer, are standing with their backs to the blackboard sothat the teacher can write the questions on the blackboard.A asks B three questions. They have 1 minute to get two pieces of information for each question.Sample questions are: -What did you do yesterday? -What do you do in your free time? -Why do you like Cambridge?Then, B asks A three questions for one minute too. They also have to get two pieces of information.Sample questions: - What are your plans for the weekend? - Who’s your favourite actor/actress? Why? - What are your plans for the summer holiday? 1.5. Circle ChairsPlace the chairs in circles. First the teacher to bring an example or two but then the students, ask questions such as: “Did youhave a good weekend?”. If the answer is “yes”, students stand up and change seats. If the answer is “No”, students stay on theirseats.Every time there is a students who has not seat. He or she will be the one to make the question. 1.6. Back to the board (also called hot chairs) Definition Warm-upIn groups of 3 people, one person in each group sits backing the blackboard. There the teacher will write a word that themembers will have to describe. If the student backing the blackboard thinks he knows the answer, he/she stands up and saysthe word. 1.7. Word cloud (it can also be a lead-in activity)Give a word cloud to each group of 3. The word cloud contains several words. Students choose 3 words and provide a title for anewspaper or a website. 1.8. Stickers in the correct alphabetical orderOn stickers the teacher writes an animal and sticks it to the forehead of the students so that all the students can see the other’sstickers but not theirs.Task: - the students must put themselves in alphabetical order - the students must gather in groups of animals, for example: birds, mammals, insects, etc. - students must decide what their classification is and write it down.
  3. 3. Rules: - No body language can be used - No one can speak at all. 1.9. Who am I? with stickers on foreheadYou must guess who you are by asking yes/no questions. 1.10. RhymesTeacher writes a word on the blackboard (for example, “tea”) and the students, in pairs, have 30 seconds to write as manywords that rhyme to it as possible. You get one point for each word you said and nobody said. 1.11. Train your brainFirst place your students in a potato shape.Ask them to count from 1 to the number of students they are (one by one).Then, ask them to count again by they can’t say 3 or a multiple or 3 or a number that contains 3. Instead they will have to say/bi:/.The same with number 5. Instead they will say /bu:/ 1.12. ENERGISER WARM-UPIn a potato shape circle. You can say WISH and extend your arms towards the next student or WUSH and stop the clockwisecirculation to make it change otherwise.You can also say MIXER, TOASTER, ELEPHANT OR ELVIS.Mixer: the person who says it must raise their arms and the people next to him/her must turn around.Toaster: The person who says it must jump and the people beside must extend their hands towards the jumper.Elephant: the person who says it must make the trunk and the people beside must form big ears with their arms.Elvis: the person who says it must play the guitar and the rest sit on their knees to show adoration towards elvis. 1.13. ROUND TABLEEveryone walks clockwise around a big table. The students change directions when they hear a word that does not fit thenormal.For example: - regular verbs (they change directions when they hear an irregular verb) - adjectives vs. opposites - animals vs. Plants - inner organs vs. Outer organs - touch something that is blue, made of wood, transparent… 1.14. ASK ME/ TELL ME: speaking1 minute to mingle around and talk about what you know or listen for what you are interested in.3 things you can ask me about 3 things I’d like to know more about
  4. 4. 1.15. CATEGORIES – warm-up with lots of revisionThe teacher writes words and concepts he/she wants to revise on the blackboard in a mingled way. They all belong to certaincategories or topics.In teams of 4 students, the teacher says a category and one member of the team goes to the blackboard and explains one wordthat belongs to that category. Then, the student erases it.At the end, all the students have to rewrite the words back in the blackboard. Will they remember them? 1.16. RECREATE A SCENE OR A PICTUREChoose a couple of students. They must give instructions to the rest of the students and tell them how they must place in orderto copy a picture. 1.17. DINGBATS-ONE At http://www.kensquiz.co.uk/documents/Dingbats1A.pdf 1.18. DOUBLE DOUBLEDouble double this, double double thatDouble this, double thatDouble double this that 1.19. PICK UP A CARDPick up a card from a pile of cards the teacher has given you and define it. 1.20. ENERGIZERS - Studentorgs.umich.edu/downloads/handouts/icebreakers.pdf - Similar block all studentorgs.umich.edu results - File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat – Quick View - In high school, I lettered in basketball. I even dunked on…. The class. When she was introduced she stood up and greeted everybody by saying that those who… 1.21. Teaching tips: Energizers in the Classroomwww.the-teachers-lung.com/.../teaching-tips-energizer... - United States Cached 15 Mar 2012 – Looking for some fresh ideas forclassroom energizers? … I’ve posted a few of my favourite energizers here. … High school English Teacher. 1.22. FIRST DAY ACTIVITY * See Appendix: First Day Activity 1.23. TEN TWENTY THIRTY AUCTION * See Appendix: Ten Twenty Thirty Auction
  5. 5. 2. LOW TECH ACTIVITIESThese activities aim to promote communication and should be achievable by most learners. They require little to no preparationand can be recycled/re-used for most contents. They require little to no preparation and can be recycled for most contents.Learners are engaged throughout, active and repletion facilitates retention.These activities include:  So you said…  Sticky Labels  Walk and Swap  Visualisation with music  Dyadic circle  Strangers Chatting  Collocation tables/walls  Instant Boardgame * See Appendix: Low tech activities 3. MINIMAL RESOURCES: WHAT TO DO WHEN THE PHOTOCOPIER BREAKS DOWN! 3.1. Back to the board game (use to revise vocabulary/grammar) 3.2. Grammar Circle Game 3.3. Which word do you like? 3.4. Do you…? Have you…? Can you….? 3.5. Students are asked to speak for about one minute on a topic of your choice. 3.6. Crystal Ball 3.7. Sell the product! 3.8. Let’s change lives 3.9. The adverb game 3.10. Rhyme Contest * See Appendix: Minimal Resources. 4. LEAD-IN ACTIVITIES 4.1. Sticky NotesIn groups and using sticky notes, each student must brainstorm 2 or 3 ideas and stick them on a large piece of paper.For example:A good teacher is someone who…A good CLIL teacher is someone who…
  6. 6. 4.2. Match photographs with word cloud (pre-teach vocabulary and lead-in)Give each student a word cloud with words you would like to teach/revise. Then, in groups of four, spread photographs thatmatch the words. Students must give a word to each photo in pairs. Then, the two pairs discuss their results. 4.3. FLY SWATSWith fly swats, spread the photos again. In groups of four, the student defines or says a word and the students must hit thecorrect photo. 4.4. Match words with their meaning (pre-teach vocabulary)The words will appear in a following reading or listening. 4.5. Word cloud (it can also be a warm-up activity)Give a word cloud to each group of 3. The word cloud contains several words. Students choose 3 words and provide a title for anewspaper or a website. They have to guess what the topic will be in class that day. * See Appendix: Word Cloud Example 5. USING GAMES5.1. What makes a good game?  It has rules  There is a winner and anyone could be a winner  There is a clear aim/goal  It is fun  Generally involves everybody  It’s motivating  It has a competitive and a cooperative element  It builds up team-spirit  There is an element of change/skill5.2. Why use games in the language classroom?  Learners generally enjoy playing games  They provide a context and purpose for using language  They take the focus away from language practice for its own sake  They provide an authentic framework for rules (bonus language exposure)  They generate enthusiasm and involvement  They allow for achievement and success  They develop important general learning and social skills  They promote natural communication and interaction  They provide variety in moods, pace, skills, interaction patterns  The same game can often be played at different linguistic levels5.3. Things to remember:  Clear instructions  Demonstrate the game  Feed in and encourage the learners to use interactive language for playing  Stop the game before learners lose interest (sometimes).