This forms a mini Getting Away with It series with my last post.
The other thing I get away with that you might be wondering about is lots of games in Business English and ESP classes, like the ones I linked to a few posts ago, and the one before that. I’m also kind of unsure about how I don’t get in trouble! Here are some possibilities:
– I usually use games to introduce new language at least as much as to practice stuff. For example, students race to hold up cards depending on whether phrases they have never heard before mean that someone is agreeing or disagreeing.
– When I do use a game to practice or memorise something, it is usually when I have shown them that they haven’t learnt it properly through usual methods, e.g. after a more serious revision quiz
– I almost always have a less game-like variation up my sleeve, for use with particular classes (and sometimes particular groups within classes during pairwork), when they are in particular moods, or if previous games have gone on for a bit. For example, with the classic vocabulary game Taboo, rather than students trying to get their partners to guess which word they are defining without using the three taboo words, they could work together to make the shortest and most accurate definitions they can.
– I sometimes justify why we are playing a game. For example, I say that the first thing we often have to do outside the classroom when we hear a word or phrase we don’t know is make a binary judgement, such as is the person who is speaking being postive or negative, agreeing or disagreeing, insisting or softening their position, or talking about an increase or decrease. Hence that is what they have to judge in the similar games that I’ve linked to in those examples.
– Other times, I just call a game a “practice activity” or “memorization technique”
Again, suit and tie probably doesn’t hurt, along with being early, knowing my subject, and bringing in loads of paper to look prepared. If I didn’t buy my ties from the 100 yen (50p) shop and my suits from George at Asda, I’d probably get away with even more…