How to teach this and that and my and your

children pointing at head and elbow teaching this that my and your with body parts
24 May Shelley Vernon No Comments



Play a pointing game with your class using pens pencils crayons. Any common item will do. Have students hold a crayon in their hand. Then tape a crayon to the wall or board. Now point to your crayon and say, “This is my crayon.” Point to yourself on “my” and to the crayon on “crayon.” Repeat with emphasis when you point!


Walk over to one student and have him/her hold their crayon in front of their face then ask them to look at the crayon and say, “This is my crayon.” Now walk back to your crayon, standing next to it say, “This is my crayon” as you point to your crayon and body demonstrating ownership. Explain that “this” is for something nearby and “that” is for something further away.


Now, point in each direction, saying, “THIS is MY crayon” or “THAT is YOUR crayon.” Repeat three times making sure you gesture with emphasis.




Have the entire class hold up a crayon while repeating “This is my crayon” three times. Then have the classroom point to the child you were with earlier and say with you “That is your crayon” three times.


Make sure the students are pointing at the correct object. So, when they say, “This is my crayon” make sure they point to their own crayon. When they say, “That is your crayon” make sure they point at the child's pen you were with before.


Point at your crayon on the board and ask, “Is this my crayon?” Students reply, “Yes, that is your crayon.” Ask a student, “Is this your crayon?” They answer, “Yes, this is my crayon.”




It is crucial that all the nouns you use below are already known by the children. This that my and your are the new words and that’s enough to think about for now, not new vocabulary too, otherwise it will be too much for the children to absorb.


Using real objects in space make this and that easier to understand and remember.




All the children have a variety of familiar objects on their desks. The teacher can say, “This is my eraser” and all students take their eraser and hold them up, showing ownership. Then say, “That is your eraser” specify someone else's eraser. Repeat, “This is my eraser” then repeat “That is your eraser” with everyone pointing at another's eraser. Make sure no one is gesturing with their eraser.


Then say, “This is my leg.” The class copy, everyone says, “This is my leg” and lifts up a leg, pointing at it. Carry on using different nouns say, “This is my ruler.” “That is your desk,” and so on.


If the students are doing well, you can make it more intriguing by saying, “This is my YELLOW backpack.” Only the students with a yellow backpack can show them. This will work well with coloured markers or clothing.


Have students practise in pairs with items around them. Listen in checking for accuracy.

children passing object to practise this that my and your this is my box



Form small groups and place piles of possessions in the middle. A small group will avoid chaos. The children take out their possessions saying, “This is my pen. This is my lunchbox. This is my book.” As a result, you have started work on the play script from "CARS." (


Play a circle game where the children pass around an object as the music plays. When the music stops the student caught holding the object picks something out of the middle and says either, “This is my…” or, “That is your...” Make sure if they say “that” they are pointing not holding it. This is near that is far.




Have the students pass around an object belonging to one student such as a lunchbox. When you clap the person holding the lunchbox says to the lunchbox owner “THIS is yours.” If by chance the owner has the lunchbox when the music stops, he can say “THIS is MINE.” As the class becomes well-versed add in more and more items to have several circulating at once.


Get loads of game ideas to teach grammar and vocabulary in my fab games book, ESL Games: 176 English Language Games for Children. It's in instant PDF download here, and in paperback and Kindle on Amazon.

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