I and my students, from all levels, have been having fun using the “Question Word” Cards as prompts for initiating questions. Although this is an Intermediate Item I have found that the word cards can be used with impressive results across different levels simply by creating a framework similar to the routines, where we provide hints which I then supplement with a basic framework. I do this by helping the students couch questions (basic and pre-intermediate) to having students from higher levels determine the content of the questions that they ask. The actual process I use depends entirely on the student’s reaction but I find that they are stimulated and that they certainly enjoy it very much. I am supported in my belief that it is being well received when using the same word cards I get feedback from basic students that indicates that they not only enjoyed the lesson but that they also expanded their vocabulary, to where higher level students comment that it was testing but fun lesson and by the way that they also expanded their vocabulary. The obvious differences in the opinions across levels is directly related to how much detail I provide and how many hints etc were given during the lesson.
The fact that I am having students ask me if we can “play” the question “game”, again and again, is proof that this is a great way to coach students to communicate in English. It sure beats “WH” questions hands down, although naturally many “WH” questions are asked during such a lesson.
Ken – Smith’s School of English Koenji
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