Categories
A1 A2 Crafts Primary Secondary

Infinite Christmas Card

This Christmas card folds infinitely from a Christmas tree, to a present, which you open to reveal a photo of the child. It’s a really lovely and very different craft for any classroom, not just the ESL one.

I adapted the original idea from Tiktok creator, @creationsbylynzb79, and created this downloadable template to make life easier for any not-as-creative teachers that want to do something a little more interesting in class.

If you visit my own Tiktok profile, @islaidiomas, you will find videos explaining my materials, as and when I release new stuff. Please like and follow me if you’re on that social media platform, as I post new stuff on there when I upload it.

Many thanks, and enjoy!

Infinite Christmass Card Template download

Categories
A1 A2 Games Primary

Naughty Elves Christmas Board Game

  1. Print off the main game board in A3 (or the two A4 one and stick together) and laminate.
  2. Print off a few pages of the toy tokens in A4, double-sided. Laminate and cut them out. I usually have 1 page for each student playing, so if my maximum group size is 4, I’ll print 4 pages.
  3. You need 2 x 6-sided dice, or you can make your own special dice by buying blank ones here : https://amzn.to/3VxNKXC and drawing numbers 1 to 5, then an elf hat on the 6th side.
  4. You will need some game pieces for the players to move around the board. You can either print off the Elf ones that I have made here, laminate and cut them out and then use card stands such as these : https://amzn.to/3VtNc59 to hold the pieces. Alternatively you can buy generic board pieces here : https://amzn.to/3gLdSiZ or you can use things like ‘stickies’ from Lidl if you have any spare.

I make a lot of games, so I tend to make my own game pieces, dice, spinners, etc. I have linked to some of the items I usually buy. The links are affiliate ones. I’d appreciate it if you used them. It costs you nothing, but I’ll get a small commission.

Laminator A3: https://amzn.to/3VdgCoe – A4: https://amzn.to/3XzvX49

Story

Christmas is coming and all the Elves are working very hard at the North Pole making all the presents for Santa.

Santa gives a prize every year to the Elf that makes the most toys, but unfortunately there are some Naughty Elves in the workshop that steal each other’s toys to cause mischief. You are one of these Elves! Try and make as many toys as possible for Santa…

Rules

The object of the game is to collect as many presents as possible before Christmas Eve to give to Santa to deliver for Christmas to all the boys and girls. The winning Elf has the most TOYS not toy cards… so a card with 3 toys on it is worth more than a card with 1 toy on it.

Before starting, give every player 2 random toy cards. The rest of the toy cards are put in a face-down pile at the side of the board.

Give each player a moving piece. Everyone starts on the big centre star in the Elf village.

Players take turns to throw the dice. They can choose to add the numbers on the dice together, subtract them, or use only one of the numbers. The aim is to land on one of the stars because when they do, they can take a toy card from the pile and increase the number of toys they have.

For example: If you throw a 4 and a 3, you can move 4+3= 7, 4-3= 1, 4, or 3 So you need to work out which combination will get you onto a star.

If a player throws a 6 (or if you’re making your own dice, an Elf hat) they can STEAL one toy card from another player. Likewise, if they throw a double 6 (or 2 Elf hats) they can steal 2 toy cards from the same player, or one card from 2 different players. NOTE: If children gang up on one person, you could add a rule that says they have to take from 2 different people, or they can’t steal from the same person on consecutive turns.

When they steal, they must ask properly – “Please can I have your (3 scooters)” Thus, they are practicing the polite form “please can I have…” plus the vocabulary for toys.

You can either play until the class ends, play until the cards run out, or play only for one or more (decided at the start of the game) complete circuits of the board, in which case you can make it more interesting by telling the students that once they get back to the big centre star they are ‘protected’. This means that no one can steal their cards, but they can still throw the dice on their turn and steal other players toy cards if they throw a 6 (Elf hat). In this case, keep playing until everyone gets back to the centre star.

Download the full game

Categories
A2 Escape Games Games Present Simple Primary Secondary

Spy Escape Game

I love using Escape Games in my classes. Usually they are fine with children from 9-10 years old. Before this age, they can be difficult, as the students often don’t have the skills required to reason. This develops as they get older.

I have written this game using an app I use in class called Escape Team, however you can use it independently of the app by using locks, or just get the students to come to you with each code as they solve it.

If you want to download the app, you can do so for free and use this game for free too with it. It’s good because the app come with it’s own timer, and it will give clues if the students get stuck. All the download links for the app on iOS and Android are below, along with the PDF for the game.

You need to print a PDF for each group playing, and if you are using electronic devices you will need one per team. I have a load of old phones I use in class for stuff like Kahoots and Escape Games. It makes it more fun.

This game is set to take an hour, but please let me know in the comments if your students found it easy or hard and if they took less or more time, so I can adjust it.

The language point is time and routines, as I wrote it for my 6th and 7th year classes that were doing time, present simple and routines at school at the time.

Here’s all the download links:

Categories
A1 Actions Games Infant Present Continuous Primary

Action verbs bingo game

This is a simple bingo activity for use with infant or primary learners.

Print off as many bingo cards as you need, with a corresponding number of vocabulary card sets with the card backing on page 3 of the PDF so that you can set your printer to print them double-sided if you have that option. Cut everything up and laminate.

Learners have a card each and the smaller card sets are placed face down in the centre of the table. Learners take it in turns to pick up a card from the centre and look at it, saying the word. but NOT showing the card to their classmates. They then place it on top of their bingo card, if they need it, or return it to the table if they don’t.

The game will be easier at first, but will get harder as they fill up the bingo card. Other learners have to listen to their classmates so that they can tell where cards they need are located on the table.

This is a short 10-15 minute game that can be used at the end, or in the middle of a class to take a break and boost brain function / learning as part of other themed activities when learning actions vocabulary.

You can even use more complex functions with older learners, by getting them to say sentences rather than just the word when they pick up the cards. For example:

  • “I like running” “I like to run”
  • “I can / can’t run”
  • “I am running” / “(S)He is running” etc…

If you like this activity, or you have any suggestions to improve it, please comment below.

Categories
A1 Actions Family Present Continuous Primary

Action verbs battleships

This is an information gap activity. Split your class into pairs, or teams and give each student or group a copy of the activity sheet.

Students fill in the top (green) part with their own choices – 2 actions for each family member.

During the task they have to ask the other team and try and find out what their choices are, marking the answers from their partner in the bottom (blue) part of the activity sheet.

  • Student A: “Is dad running?”
  • Student B: “No, he isn’t” (Student A marks an ‘X’ for ‘Dad’ and ‘Run’)
  • Student B: “Is brother swimming?”
  • Student A: “Yes, he is.” (Student B marks a ‘🗸’ for ‘Brother’ and ‘Swimming’)

The winner is the first team to find all their partners’ choices.

This task covers both actions and family vocabulary with present continuous practice in a controlled way. It is suitable for elementary learners.

If you use this activity, please comment below with your thoughts or any suggestions and improvements!