ALL: Back to school! First day starters for the year. Games and assessment criteria.

Ice-breakers for our first day at school!
Activities to start using and improving your English in a fun way.

ESO1 and 2:
  • PASS THE BALL and introduce yourself. IN PAIRS: You can ask several questions to your classmate and then talk about him or her to the class.
  • MYSELF CARD. Draw yourself and fill in the gaps completing the sentences: My name is... I'm ... years old. I'm from ... I live in...  You can expand your information: My favourite animal/singer/subject is... I can speak... I like/I don't like... 
  • GAME: End up with a game: stand up and form a circle, and each student say a word related to a topic (e.g. SUMMER). When a student says a word that does not fit or remains silent, sits down and gets eliminated. The last one standing up is the winner.
  • An extra activity could be to intorudce basic instructions in English and hang a poster withe them, e.g.: How do you say ... in English?

ESO3 and 4:

  • ASK ATTACK: Draw a big question mark and let students ask you questions. Write them down to ellicit error correction (sentence structure)-, other students can help in the right word order/grammatical correction.
  • LIE DETECTOR: You say three sentences about yourself, two are true, one is false. The class have to guess which one is the lie. The more surprising your true sentences are, the better! If you have proof of it, show them! E.g.:
  1. I have been to Greece, Iceland and India this summer. 
  2. I have learnt Nepalese language.
  3. I have been parachuting.
  • GUESS WHO: in this case, your teacher asks you to write an anecdote about your (e.g. this summer) or a hobby you have, and collects them from you. Then, they are read loud and the class have to guess who is the person who wrote it.
NOTE FOR TEACHERS: It is important to set the assessment criteria in the first day, too. Make it in a clear and concise way, but make all the information available. They can be asked to be the markers of a particular text (written or oral) to experience the way the teacher is going to mark compositions or oral skills.

Exemplify compositions with a good layout and a really bad one to exaggerate the contrasts and make clear what is the model to follow. For the oral skills, we can try with this video about the trending topic speech by Ana Botella at the Olympic Games candidate cities final presentation (this is a parody with the transcription of the way it sounds in 'her' Spanglish speech).  We can invite students to reflect about pronunciation in a fun way. What would they correct about pronunciation?

40% Procedures (what you do: compositions, speaking, listening, reading, grammar, vocabulary)
30% Concepts (what you know: written tests, oral tests)
30% Habits (how you do it: homework, dossiers/portfolio, punctuality)

Written compositions:           Speaking:                        Reading:
Pr. Presentation 20%                Pronunciation 25%             2nd ESO Short stories
Acc. Accuracy 20%                  Accuracy 25%                   3rd ESO Short stories
Fl. Fluency 20%                        Fluency 25%                     4th ESO Romeo and Juliet
Str. Structure 20%                    Acting 25%                        + Voluntary reading
Or. Originality 20%

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