This is the first post I’ve written in a little while – it’s been Easter holiday time! Before the Easter break, a colleague and I were due to teach our 10-11 year olds ‘going to’. We wanted a fun way to introduce it, and happened on this little beauty from online stopwatch [go to Classroom Timers and scroll all the way down]. I’d used the timers in class before, and the students had always liked them. (If you’re not familiar with the timers provided by the online stopwatch site, take a look! They’re so useful.)
Here’s what I did with my class:
- First I asked students what they could see. They told me things like sportsperson, running and race. Then I asked each pair to predict which runner would win the race and wrote down their guesses, eg. Pablo and Noelia – runner no. 2. We have a points system in our class and I told them that if they got it right they would win a point. I set the timer for 30 seconds and started it off. The students got really into it, cheering on their runner (which was a good opportunity to teach “Come on!”)
- They clamoured to do it again, and of course I had no objection because this time, when they were so eager to give me their predictions, I asked them to tell me their prediction using the target language. I wrote the skeleton sentence on the board for them to use: ” _____ is going to win.” There was not an ounce of reluctance to use the new language!
- The third time you do it, I would advise rubbing the skeleton sentence off the board and asking them to remember the phrase. After becoming familiar with the meaning of ‘going to’, we went on to look at the form and pronunciation before tackling some controlled practice exercises.
The winner seems to be random, although for some reason number 2 kept winning in my class. There are also two other race-based timers you can use – a swimming race and a snail race. I used this activity with kids, but I’m sure adults would get a kick out of it too.