In our ongoing series of warmer suggestions for TEFL course students, we make reference to ‘RASCL’ (see articles 5 to 11), which is the acronym reflecting the qualities of a warmer. RASCL = Recycle, Active, Start simple, Contact and Link in. TEFL trainers can include these basic activities in their TEFL course, augmenting the repertoire of their trainees’ lesson plans.
Warmer 6: Be horrible.
This warmer works very well with adolescents, but all age groups enjoy it. The teacher gives each student/team (S/T) a plastic cup. Each S/T puts 20 points in their cup – a point could be a pasta shell, a bean, a piece of Lego… anything that represents a point. Plastic money is particularly motivating. The teacher asks the first S/T a question. If the answer is correct they must take 1 point from a different S/T and 2 points from another S/T. They cannot take both 1 and 2 points from the same S/T. The teacher then asks the next S/T a question, and so on. The winner is the one with most points when the teacher stops the game. The game is such that the S/T who correctly answers the question gets to ‘attack’ other S/Ts. However, revenge is always just around the corner, and that is the fun of the game!
Teacher trainer notes: TEFL trainers can pass on to TEFL trainees many effective techniques, but they can have their downsides. In 99.9% of cases this warmer provides good-hearted fun, but be sensitive to any S/T that are losing too many points! Avoid this by carefully pairing weak and strong students in the first place, or, failing that, grade the difficulty of the questions being asked to redress any dire imbalances!
TEFL / TESOL considerations: One of the nice things about this game is that it is self-regulating. S/T ‘attack the other S/T’s with most points in order to win, so overall, the final scores are always quite similar. As with other warmers in this series, it also requires no time investment in lesson planning.
Posted on May 11th, 2017