Getting started with the games books

to get ahead you have to get started mark twain
19 Apr Shelley Vernon No Comments

*This blog post is for customers who have bought one of my four games books.

I hope you've started using your games book but if not, here is some encouragement.


1. It's a manual, not a novel. Firstly, please don't try and read the whole book. You might end up feeling overwhelmed by all the options and do nothing.


Have you ever browsed through a cookery book and then not actually made a single recipe? I know I have!


2. Start by reading the introduction to glean any tips relevant to you. It's especially important to read the classroom management tips with children.


3. Just pick a game and try it!


Decide what vocabulary and/or phrases you are teaching in your next lesson. And pick a game, any game, and try it in the next lesson.


The sooner you get started, the easier it will become.


4. Use the steps


The games are divided into steps, listening, speaking, and reading and writing. (The preschool games doesn't have any reading and writing games.)


You start by presenting new language using any listening game. Use one or two of those, depending on how fast your class learns.


Then try step two...and so on!


5. Other quick start methods


Look for the section that concerns your latest book purchase:


preschool games book coverPreschool

With the preschool games book, it's really helpful if you have the stories. You can use the lesson plans that come with those, all made of games from the preschool games book.


ESL games book coverPrimary

With the primary school games book "176 games" you get 16 elementary lesson plans made of games to get you started, so try those. Those lesson plans can be adapted to teach anything.


Teach your child English book coverOne to one

If you have Teach Your Child English start by watching the 3 demo lessons and copy those. When you watch them, read the comments in the book at the same time. You'll glean extra tips that way.


ESL classroom activities book coverTeen/Adult

If you can't get started try teaching six new words. This is an easy way into using a few games. The more you use, the easier it gets. Start with Hand Sign Stories. With your students, make up a gesture for each new word. You say the word, students listen and make the gesture. Speed up as they get better at it. Time: 5 mins roughly, but more if students are engrossed and enjoying it. 


Try Blow Your House Down - use the six new words and include a lot of revision words too. You need lots of pictures of the vocabulary. If you don't have any flashcards then you can point to a picture in your textbook and students name that. Or you can sketch pictures yourself, and have your students each sketch a few pictures for you, and then make those your vocabulary flashcards. You do not want the WORD written by the picture - that's too easy - that's a reading task. You just want the picture. So students have to recall the word from their memories. Then try Ten Sentences with Watermelon using your six new words.


Once you have used those games to teach vocabulary words, next time you'll be able to use them for any grammar you like, simply by playing with full sentences that include your target grammar.


And ask me any questions in the comments below - I'll reply to you!

All the best

Kind regards

Shelley Ann Vernon

Teaching English Games

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