What…… like…?

This week’s post is by Sandy Millin, co-curator of #eltpics.

Last week I was looking for ideas to help me revise personality adjectives with an intermediate class. In my bookmarks I rediscovered Ceri Jones’ Back to the Drawing Board lesson plan, in which she started with an egg shape on the board, and the students ended up with profiles of people they had drawn themselves. It worked really well, and led to us focussing on four questions which are often confused by students at many levels:

  • What does he like?
  • What does he look like?
  • What was he like?
  • What would he like to do?

By the end of the lesson, we had revised the personality adjectives a lot, but the students were still struggling with these questions, and especially how to answer them – they tried to start every answer with ‘He likes…’ regardless of which question it was.

For the next class I turned to the eltpics ‘Every Picture Tells a Story‘ set and created the following handouts:

Images by: @ij64, @klizbarker, @aClilToClimb (x2), @mkofab, @jinotaj

[To download, click ‘view on slideshare’. You may have to log in (not sure), but it’s completely free. You should then be able to click on ‘download’ above the document.]

Each pair was given one picture with the associated questions and instructed not to show it to anyone else. They had to work together to answer the questions in as much detail as possible. I helped them with vocabulary where necessary.

They then folded the paper in half so that they could only see the answers and not the picture.

Pairs then got together in groups of four. They looked at the other pair’s answers and tried to imagine what was on their original picture. If they wanted to, the readers could sketch what they imagined. After a few minutes, they were then allowed to look at the original image and describe how it differed from what they expected. I tried to choose images which would promote discussion for my students – other images may be better for your class.

Other ideas

  • Every Picture Tells a Story‘ is a great set for modals of speculation. What must have happened? What could happen next? What could they be thinking? What might you do in the same situation?
  • In a similar way to Ceri’s lesson, students could use the questions as the basis for profiles of the people in the pictures.
  • They could also use ‘What would they like to do?’ as the start of a story describing what happened after the photo was taken.
  • The picture could accompany a newspaper article describing where the person was seen or a ‘wanted’ poster.
  • Any of the images from the same set could even be the centrepiece of a whole storytelling lesson. Laura Patsko explains how.

Next week, a special guest……..



4 thoughts on “What…… like…?

  1. Pingback: What…… like…? | TeachingEnglish | Scoop.it

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