Key words: warm-up activity, interaction, motivation, icebreakers
Warm-up activities are essential part of teaching language that are directed to get students’ attention during classes. Conducting lessons through warm-up activities make students attentive, interested and ready to participate at classes. In addition, reviewing language from previous lesson or starting the lesson with new topic.
There is a list of warm-up activities that do not require any preparation. Most of them can be used as filler activities.
Write two or more questions on the board which introduce the topic of the lesson. For instance, if the topic is about food, you could write: What’s your favorite food? What kind of foods do you prefer? etc. Give 3–5 minutes to think and discuss the questions, then students present their answers to the class.
Make the longest words
Write a topical word vertically down on two sides of the board, for example, ENVIRONMENT. Divide students into groups, they should write the longest word that begins with each letter. Score a team with a point per word.
Eventually Nocturnal Vitally Initially Rehearsal Obvious Nausea Minimum Especially Necessary Treasure
Find the meaning of your name
For this activity students can use dictionaries, google or other resources to find out proper adjectives that begin with each letter of their name. For example,
Joyful, Inquisitive, Magnificent.
Write a sentence on the board but change the word order, then ask students to make up the correct sentence. For example,
a motorcycle more economical riding is a car driving than
Ask students to think of 5–10 items that fit particular criteria. For instance:
– Jobs where you have to wear a uniform
– English football clubs
– Sports that are played with a ball
– Foods that contain egg
– Animals that lay eggs
– Three letter parts of the body — eye, arm, leg, hip, ear, toe jaw, rib, lip, gum
Who am I?
In this game, the leader prepares cards with famous people's names on them. The leader tapes one card on the back of each member. Then everyone pretends they are at a party and asks each other questions to find out their own identities. When someone guesses their own name correctly, the name-tag gets taped to their front and they continue to chat with the party guests until everyone is wearing the nametag on the front.
This game is one of the most effective and interesting activity among students. Teacher tells initial word, for example, travel and every student takes it turns to say a word that related to the previous word.
Travel — tourism- luggage — ticket — hotel-……
Three things in common
This is an effective icebreaker, it can be used as a lead-in to a topic or to check students’ knowledge of a grammar reference. Ask students to work in pairs and find three things that they have in common and report back to the class. Teacher can specify the topic area like three foods we both do not like, three things we both like about studying at university, three things we both can do, three sports we both like, etc.
Fortunately / Unfortunately
Students make story by using these adverbs. One by one students make sentence that related to the previous one putting the adverbs fortunately/unfortunately. For example:
Teacher: Yesterday my purse was stolen.
Student A: Fortunately, I had money in my pocket.
Student B: Unfortunately, it was not enough.
Student C: Fortunately, I met my friend.
Student D: Unfortunately, he didn’t borrow any money.
One person thinks of an object (person, place, or thing). Everyone takes turns asking yes/no questions until someone can guess correctly (or until 20 questions are asked). The difficult part is that you cannot ask «wh» questions!
Example: PINEAPPLE. Does it talk? No. Does it make life easier? No. Do you eat it? Yes. Is it something you would eat for dinner? No. Etc...
If someone makes a mistake in forming the question, other club members can help turn it into a proper question.
Draw the Picture
In this activity members split up into pairs or small groups. One person looks at a scene from a magazine or book (the leader should cut out enough pictures, or bring in enough magazines for the club). The other person has a pencil and a blank piece of paper. The person with the picture will try to describe everything he sees to the drawer. This is good practice for using prepositions of place. When the describer is finished, compare the drawings to the real thing! Whose is the closest to the original?
All above mentioned activities can be used for all age group learners. Using icebreakers, fillers and warm-up activities keep students energetic, motivated and active, as well as, it helps to create language learning atmosphere and to allow students interact each other easily at classroom.