Using English Games to teach Kids in Ikoma
At my Smith School of English franchise in Ikoma I really strive to make the classes both interesting and practical. In my last blog post I wrote about exploring my students interest in cooking. This time, I want to focus on some of the English games we play in the kids class at my school. English Games are excellent for kids for a variety of reasons. They raise motivation because they are fun. Games make it easy to learn otherwise boring stuff like lists. They create a social dimension to the class by creating new situations and relationships in the class. This new social dimension is very stimulating and heightens students awareness of the whole situation.
Kids who are just starting at my school need to learn numbers. I put a high priority on numbers and counting. There are many ways to learn numbers, but one of the English games that the kids at Ikoma love learning English numbers is through the animals game. This is a version of battleships, so it includes some skill or strategy, suspense and a small amount of competition. Some of my English kids students are sensitive to competition, and if that is the case, we don’t play this English game quite as much.
The ‘Put’ Game
Another of the English games my beginning kids students like is the ‘put’ game. We get to practice prepositions of place by giving simple commands to put dolls in, on, or under ‘houses’ in the class. The kids get to pass the dolls to each other, rotate between positions in the class and make decisions about where to instruct the other kids to put the dolls. There is movement and speaking and clearly tangible correct and incorrect responses. For excitement, we sometimes use a timer to see how far we can get completing the set in a given time.
Another possibly boring task that games make fun here in my Ikoma English school is memorizing writing letters. Kids here love to play the treasure hunt game (sometimes I call it ‘pirates’). Each kid has a map with a grid. the ‘master’ map has treasure and monster tokens on it. The students have to write a different letter on each grid square. If their square is the same as a token on their turn the get the token, be it monster or treasure. Everyone finds it fun and exciting.
These are just a few of the English games that my kids English students play to learn. Many of them are surprised when class time is up. I guess it means they are having fun learning English!