Picturing prepositions

2nd June 2006 at 01:00
One of the ways I have been making grammar more interesting for my Year 56 class is to adapt party or leisure games to use in literacy lessons. One of the most popular is one I call Preposition Pictionary.

We play this in teams on whiteboards. Each team appoints an "artist"

who changes with each go. The artists all come to the front of the class and are shown a preposition such as "amongst", "inside", 'between". They then return to their group and on a signal have to sketch a picture for the others to guess the word, only being allowed to say "Yes" or "No" to the suggestions. As soon as the other team members have guessed the word they must write it on their whiteboards and hold it aloft. The first team to guess the preposition and spell it correctly wins a point and the next turn starts, with a new artist. Each child takes it turn to be the artist and the winning team is the one with the most points at the end. This game also works well with proverbs and idioms. Again, the winning team has to write the correct answer on their whiteboard and hold it aloft. This prevents calling out and the game becoming noisy.

Another popular game to play in either the playground or hall is an adaptation of an old favourite, colour corners. Each corner of the playground or hall is labelled with the name of a part of speech, such as verb, adjective, noun, adverb. The children move around the hall in some way, such as running, skipping, dancing, and a word is then called out.

They have to decide which part of speech the word is and run to that area, the last one being out.

The game may be modified by asking them to move in the manner of an adverb, eg slowly, furtively, joyfully. Children can also be stretched by using words such as "fight" which can be used as either a noun or a verb and having to justify their choice.

I have also adapted this game to other subjects such as geography by naming the different areas city, town, village etc or giving them names of different continents and calling out appropriate vocabulary.

Joanne Jones

Literacy co-ordinator Gipsey Bridge Primary School, Lincolnshire

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