"Pass the Bomb!" This is a brilliant starter activity which appeals to all ages and abilities.
The game Pass the Bomb contains a bomb which ticks for a random length of time from 10 to 50 seconds and then "explodes".
The class plays as two teams and the "bomb" has to be passed back and forth from one team to the other. The instruction can be anything you like - for example, next letter in the alphabet, naming colours, perfect tense sentences, opinion on hobbies, or with A-level students giving a fact about the environment or a sentence using the subjunctive.
Whichever team is not holding the bomb when it explodes gets five points.
You can be strict about the statements made and insist on passing the bomb back if accuracy is an issue. Pupils love this and quickly learn to think spontaneously
Pass the Bomb can be bought from Amazon for pound;15.
Elaine Pratt teaches at Keswick School, Cumbria