First Class: All About Them Lesson Plan

Classes have finally started here in Argentina. First classes are always difficult to plan for me, because I believe that the focus should be on getting to know each other in a fun and interesting way. I’m always short of  ideas, and for one reason or another I don’t want to do the same I did the previous year with my new classes. However, this year, I’m very happy with how everything turned out (hopefully next year I will still be as glad as I am today with the results and will be eager to repeat the experience).

I started the classes with a very simple activity; an activity I bet you have done several times: throwing a ball and asking the one who has caught it to tell us their name. This time, however, I gave it a little twist. The person who had the ball was asked to introduce the person sitting next to them. They had to talk about the things they like, don’t like, personality, and whatever came to their mind. This was a great warm up and preparation for the last  activity I was planning to do on that day.

Then, as they didn’t know me. I prepared an anagram with my name and words related to me in some way. I gave them a clue and they had to guess the word. For example, the first word is my favourite sport (SWIMMING). Once they guessed the word, I gave them some details about the topic to make it more fun. For example, in fact, it is not that it is my favourite sport, I hate sports, and that’s the only one I can at least do (LOL). Here, you can see my anagram. CHALLENGE: Would you like to guess in what way the other words relate to me?


Finally, I asked them to create crosswords about them in small groups. The words that would form the crosswords would be their names. They had to create the crosswords and write the references. At the end of the class, we exchanged the crosswords and they had to solve them. It was great fun, student centered, students created content, by them and about them, and I managed to make them write without complaining in the first class. Proud with the results, here you can see some of them (the photos quality is not very good, sorry):

If you want some more ideas for your first week classes, have a look at this post.


Posted on March 11, 2011, in Lesson Plans and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. favourite sport; favourite pastime; favourite food; favourite colour (lots of favourites going on here!); where you wish you came from 😉 ; what you ban in your lessons; what you’ll integrate with speaking, listening and writing.

  2. Jajaja. Lots of favourites around there and they are all correct! Though the last three are incorrect I’m afraid jajaja. Congrats David!

  3. Lovely idea, Sabrina. And hope you’re having a good start to the term, BTW.

    Might even try it this afternoon. How many students did you have, and what age/level?

  4. Hi Alan, Thanks for passing by. I used it with my 5º graders (age 10), around 26 students and with my 2 year students (age 14) around 20 students. It went well with both of them. I imagine that this activity won’t work very well with small classes. Let me know how it went, if you try it out.

  5. It’s always a good thing when students are interested in the activities you put forth and it seems as though they were. =)

  6. I loved it and I’m sure it might work all right with small groups (as small as 4 people) as long as they make the 1st version of the crossword, like – Pete’s favourite colour, Juan is afraid of this etc. – in pairs then getting the other pair guess.:)

  7. Hi Sabrina,

    One of my colleagues used the crossword with her grade 7 students and she said it really worked well. I prepared a sample for my grade 6 and will do it with them tomorrow. thanks for the idea. I’m sure they will enjy it!

    • Hi Eva! I’m glad you’ve found it useful. Thanks for having included my post in your carnival. Let’s keep on learning together.

  1. Pingback: The 22nd ESL / EFL / ELL Blog Carnival | EFL Classroom 2.0 - Teacher Talk

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