Use this pdf or create your own exercises to get kids moving and speaking English!
Here’s an example of a circuit course to do with your students in the school gym. Once the student’s have practised the teacher’s course, divide the students into pairs and have one of them draw a circuit course without the other seeing. The student that has drawn the course then describes the path he has sketched to his partner who must then follow instructions.
PASS THE HOOP
Divided into teams, ask the groups to form a circle by holding hands with a hula hoop placed over the joined hands of two group members from each team. The goal of the game is to pass the hula hoop as quickly as possible without breaking handshakes. To make the game more dynamic, the teacher can yell LEFT or RIGHT to suddenly change the direction of the hula hoop or add a second hula hoop that must move in the opposite direction.
Divide the group into teams and then into pairs. Place cones in random place between the starting line and the finish and place the flag that each team has created (see ORIENTEERING ACTIVITY 1) on the finish line. Blindfold a pupil of each pair, and position them at the starting point. By listening to the instructions of their partnerthe blindfolded student must reach the flag at the end point then they must run to the starting line to tag the next couple. The first team to complete the course is the winner.
EXAMPLES OF CLASSROOM LANGUAGE: Go to the left and take 2 giant steps. Go to the right and take 4 baby steps. Take five big steps forward. Take one small step backward.
Before beginning the game review the vocabulary words LEFT, RIGHT, FORWARD, BACKWARD, STEPS, BIG, SMALL. Divide the students in pairs and position the pairs randomly on the perimeter lines of the gym. Place cones in the center of the gym as obstacles. Then assign one child from each pair the role of leader and ask the other student of the pair to keep their eyes closed at all times (or blindfold them). The aim of the game is for the leader to guide their partner across the gym without bumping into an obstacle or into other students.
EXAMPLES OF CLASSROOM LANGUAGE: take 3 steps forward, take 4 small steps to the right, etc.
Another version of the classic game of SIMON SAYS. Teachers use their imagination and create phrases using LEFT, RIGHT, UP, DOWN, action words and body parts. Remind students that they must follow instructions carefuly only if the phrases are preceded by ‘teacher says’. The student who performs the wrong action or who performs it without being told ‘teacher says’ is eliminated from the game.
If older students are participating, the teacher can make the game more difficult by performing actions that do not correspond to the sentence being said (For example, “Teacher says touch your right foot” while the teacheractually touches theright arm instead). Instinctively students will imitate the teacher and therefore will have to pay particular attention in order not to make mistakes.
EXAMPLE OF CLASSROOM LANGUAGE – Teacher says put your left arm up. Teacher says touch your right knee. Teacher says stomp your left foot. Teacher says sit down. Put your chin up. No, I’m sorry I didn’t say Teacher Says!
RELAY RACE: PUT IT ON
Divide the class into two teams. Cut the sentences into strips (one for each team), fold the strips in half and place them in one container per team. Prepare a set of items mentioned in the sentences for each team (a big ball, a blue cone, etc.) and place them next to the container with the folded sentences on the starting line. At the start, one student per team will, in turn, take a sentence from the container, read it aloud and do what the sentence says. Pupils who do not understand the request can ask teammates for help. The first team to do all the actions on the strips wins.
IN THE GARDEN: TRUE OR FALSE
The next game aims to consolidate words related to the school garden and the prepositions of place. Distribute one sheet per team (the 4 sheets have the same sentences but are arranged in different order) and place 10 balls in the school garden following the instructions of the sentences but intentionally mistaking the position of some (for example, instead of putting a ball ON the bench you could decide to place it UNDER the bench).
On go, a student from each team must read the first sentence out loud and all the students in the team must run to touch the ball that corresponds to the sentence, observe its location, return to the starting point and decide together with the other members of the team if the sentence is TRUE or FALSE. It is important that the pupils take turns reading the sentences aloud so that everyone can participate in the game and that one member of each team is elected to act as secretary to write. The teacher will have the task of making sure at each turn that the marked answer is correct. The first team to complete the race and answer all questions correctly wins. If older students are participating the teacher can make the level more advanced by asking them to correct the FALSE sentences on the back of the sheet.
UNSCRAMBLE THE SENTENCES
Before the game starts, print the pdf below or prepare new sentences that have at least one word per number of children per team (e.g. in a team of 7 children you could use the phrase ‘I like bread with jam for breakfast ‘.) Cut the words from each sentence, mix them and place one sentence in each container. Have the pupils stand behind the starting line in single file and the numbered containers at a designated finish line.
On go, one student at a time must run to the first container, take a word and bring it back to their classmates. The next student in line will do the same until the words are finished in that container. The pupils at the starting line will be placing the words in the correct order and once the sentence has been formed, they must read the sentence to the teacher. If the sentence is correct the students can continue with the second sentence until all the sentences are completed.
CAPTURE THE FLAG
First, the teacher divides the class into pairs, assigns each pair a number and then puts the pair of students facing each other each at about 5 meters from a dividing line in the center of the field.
At this point the teacher, holding a flag (a handkerchief, a bandana, a shirt, etc.), stands at one end of the dividing line and holds out the flag and shouts a number. The pair with the same number run towards the flag trying to grab it and when one of them has they run to their starting point without being tagged by the other.
Each player who manages to steal the flag first and return safely to his team without being touched is awarded a point. On the other hand, if the player is tagged before returning to the starting point, the point is awarded to the other team. Then, the flag is returned to the teacher and the game continues.
The team with the most points wins.
As an alternative, other categories of words can be used instead of numbers such as animals, colors, etc.
LISTEN AND TOUCH
The teacher calls out a number and students must touch the floor only with that number of body parts using unique combinations (for example: not just two feet but also one foot one finger).
STATUE SCULPTOR ROCK
Divide the class in groups of 3. One student is the ‘statue’ and must hold a pose in a random silly position. Another student is the ‘rock’ and must keep eyes closed at all times so they don’t see the statue. The last student is the ‘sculptor’ and has 30 seconds to explain to the ‘rock’ the pose held by the ‘statue’. The rock must mimic the ‘statue’ simply by following the directions given by the ‘sculptor’. For example: place your foot on your knee, palms together, etc. At the end of the 30 seconds the teacher stops the game and the ‘rocks’ can open their eyes to see if their position is the same as the ‘statues’. As an adaptation there can be one statue per the whole class rather than in each group.
ROLL AND DO IN THE GYM
Before beginning the game, together with the students match an action to numbers 1- 6.
For example: 1. push up 2. jumping jacks 3. turn around and touch the ground 4. hops on one leg 5. squats 6. burpees.
Divide the students in pairs and distribute two dice to each pair. In turn students must roll the first die to determine the action that must be carried out and the second die that determines the number of times the action must be done. As the student does the action he or she must say out loud the action being performed in English (for example: one jumping jack, two jumping jacks…).