Five Cool Ideas for your CI Classroom!

I have recently been re-reading two books I purchased a few years ago, when I was still teaching languages traditionally. The books are:

100+ Fun Ideas for Practising Modern Foreign Languages in the Primary Classroom and

More Fun Ideas for Advancing Modern Foreign Languages in the Primary Classroom, both by Sue Cave.

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Here are some ideas I think we could use successfully and that would be engaging for our TPRS students:

Pictionary – have some sentences available from your latest story for a student to choose from. Pick a student and they choose a sentence. They then have to illustrate the sentence on a large piece of paper in front of the class, while the rest of the class guesses what sentence it is. The first one to correctly say the sentence is the next one to choose a sentence and do the illustration.

Predict the sentence – (lots of reading and writing practise in a fun way!) Make a sentence scaffold with words students are familiar with eg.

Ibu Anne                     mau                       makan                     di                   KFC.

Harimau              tidak mau                    berlari                     ke                   rumah.

Perempuan                                                muntah                                          pohon.

Laki-laki                                                                                                              Melbourne.

Students then choose words from the above lists to make a sentence. They could do this on mini whiteboards. Teacher also chooses from the words above to make a sentence, and students have to predict what the teacher has written! When they have finished writing their sentence, they stand up. Once all are standing,  you begin to read your sentence word by word. Ask them to sit down as soon as one of their words is not the same as yours. The students left standing should have the same sentence as you and win a point!  This is a great, non-threatening activity to encourage reluctant writers!

Predict the Sentence 2 – Same as above but this time students aim to write a unique sentence. They volunteer to read their sentence aloud. Anyone who has exactly the same sentence as the reader sits down, along with the reader. This continues until the students left standing do indeed have sentences that are unique and win a point.

I Want – Hand out picture cards or real items that are cognates in your language. Only give them to about half the class. Have students sit in a big circle. Encourage those students with nothing to raise their hand and when chosen, ask (in L2) ‘Saya mau (cognate). This seems to be forcing output but I think  younger students would love it they would be highly motivated to say the phrase. (Of course you would play my Qwin Game first, so the language has been modelled many times first.) You could ask receiving students to say ‘Terima kasih (thank you) to encourage good manners.


Kim’s Game – I have no idea why this game is called Kim’s Game, but I know my Prep students love it! You can play it traditionally with about 12 items (I use cognates) on a table and then cover them all up with a cloth and students have to tell you what is there. Great for reps on ‘Ada’ (There is)! Then you can draw the items on the whiteboard as students recall what is under the cloth. Then of course you have to count each time a student adds another one, to see if they have remembered all 12 yet! (Lots of counting practice!) I call it ‘Magic’ because I am covering something with a cloth so kids love it! Then, you can remove something from the table (students close eyes and cover them with hands) and see if they can guess what is missing. “What is not there?” Apa tidak ada? (Kim’s Game) Try removing two items, or three! BUT the coolest thing ever is you can make these games in Powerpoint! Just find and insert lots of cognates or acquired pictures onto your first slide. Then duplicate the slide lots of times! (Hold down and right click) Now remove a different item from each slide. You simply click through your slides and students say what is not there!