My E8 students are kind of fed up with grammar and vocabulary revision. No wonder, it’s already mid-June. So I’ve decided to devote the last lesson to speaking mainly. All conversation questions go with the exam topics. Some of them are really challenging but I’m sure our students will manage. If you still want your students to revise vocabulary or grammar while practicing oral skills, you may always ask them to prepare a word cloud to a particular question or use a certain grammar structure while giving opinions.
Mixing may lead to outstanding results. Have a look at my newest short presentation on mixed tenses for lower levels. Good for the revision of the main English tenses and irregular verbs, especially for students preparing for different exams. The last part includes speaking practice and thus is more creative.
This post is useful for the end-of-year lessons. If you want to revise exam vocabulary with your students, it’s enough to pick a topic using the wheel and/or one of the ideas below to have a nice warm-up or even the whole lesson. Not only will your students have to be really creative but they will also revise exam vocabulary in context and develop their speaking and writing skills.
- Challenging writing – students work in groups. Each group gets a different topic (for example group A: Health and group B: Crime). They write down 8-10 words connected with their topics. Then we give them a writing task on a totally different topic (for example Nature) and they have to write it using all their 8-10 words. Follow-up: peer correction and identifying 8-10 words.
- Chain stories – students work in pairs or groups. Each pair gets a different topic and writes a few words connected with their topic. Then one pair starts a story in which they use one of their words, the next pair has to continue using their word, then the other pair does the same. We can repeat it depending on how many students we have in each group or how much time we have left.
- Small talks – I ask my students to prepare 1-2-sentence conversation starters on all exam topics. Next lesson each student picks a different exam topic. Then students work in pairs (for example student A gets Sport and student B gets House). Then I give them a conversation starter on a totally different topic (for example Culture) and they have to make a dialogue trying to change the topic into theirs in a natural way. If one of them succeeds in doing it quite quickly, they other student has to try to change it into his. I set a time limit of usually 3-5 minutes. So the students have to continue till the time is up.
- For other ideas see the ‘Secret word’ post.
I personally hate questions such as: ‘How did you spend your last weekend?’, “What interesting did you do yesterday?’. But we need to practice past tenses with our students. This exercise is ideal for a warm-up. Ask your students to choose one famous character (real or fictional) and a picture that would illustrate the way the character could spend their last weekend. Students work in pairs. One is a famous person, the other a journalist who has to learn as much as possible about the celebrity’s weekend. They talk. Then the journalists share the most interesting facts about their celebrities with the rest of the class.