It had been well over a year since I’d posted anything new on my worksheets page on UK and US English, but made up for lost time with this double whammy.
The first idea was one I came up with when I was working on the 46 trivia quizzes in my last post. Students are given a pair of sentences with one about the UK and one about the USA, with each sentence containing both something famous related to that place and vocabulary that is different in the other country, as in:
- Where are Gap jeans, chinos and other pants from?
- Where are Marks and Spencer briefs, boxers and other pants from?
for words with different meanings in the two places, or:
- Where can I buy Bud Light at Louisville’s Liquor Barn and Party Mart liquor stores?
- Where can I buy London Pride bitter in an Oddbins off license?
for different words in the two countries.
One student reads out one sentence for their partner to guess “UK” or “USA”. They get two points if they guess the country correctly, one point if they choose to hear the second sentence of the pair and then guess which one is which, and no points if they guess wrongly at any point. The famous brands, people, places etc hopefully both help students who don’t know the vocab guess and teach some useful cultural info for when they go to, meet people from or come across arts and media from those places. Examples:
British or American food and drink trivia quiz (British and American food vocabulary)
British or American fashion trivia quiz (British and American clothes vocabulary)
British or American transport trivia quiz (British and American English and transport vocabulary) – NEW
British or American trivia quiz (US and UK vocabulary and cultural knowledge) – NEW
These are a bit time consuming to make your own, but I found that with Google and my big list of British and American English I could knock out one on the chosen vocab topic in just over an hour.
The second idea is more of a straight quiz on British and American English, almost of the kind which I slag off in my articles on teaching this topic. This version partly makes up for that by being mainly Yes/ No and allowing up to six guesses for other questions. It’s main focus is anyway on the checking/ clarifying language like “What does… mean?” and “How do you spell…?” that are in the quiz questions. After doing the quiz and perhaps trying to remember the UK and US vocab, students try to construct checking/ clarifying phrases like “Does… mean the same as…?” and “How do you pronounce…?” and then use them to make their own quiz questions on topics of their choice. Examples:
Again, you can easily make a similar one on almost any topic in my big list of UK and USA vocab (this time without the time consuming but possibly fun time researching on Google). Note that which checking/ clarifying questions you can cover in each worksheet will depend on what students are likely to want to ask about those particular words.