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Saturday, October 29, 2005

Disaster lesson from "present simple"

One of my favorite bloggers, BadAunt at Present Simple, recently reported on a learning exercise she devised for her ESL students in Japan:
Last week the students learned some vocabulary for talking about accidents, and today, by way of reinforcement, I'm giving them a board game in which they'll move around the board having bizarre accidents (and losing points), going to hospital (and gaining points), and telling each other what happened to them. After that I'll give them a new vocabulary handout about aches and pains. This is all leading up to a homework assignment which I hope will keep me amused while I'm grading it, in which they will write me letters making excuses for fictional absences from class. I'm hoping for things like this:
Sorry I couldn't come to class for the last three weeks. I had a terrible 'flu with fits of sneezing, and then when I was making breakfast I got my tongue stuck in the toaster and as I was leaving the house to go to the hospital I got my penis caught in the door and smashed it. On the way to the hospital I fell down a pothole and got a bad concussion, and had to stay in hospital for two weeks. Then my dog ate my homework and got a stomachache and died. I cried all night and now my eyes hurt and I have the hiccups.
The accident game is a great hit. The classroom echoes with cries of,
"You look terrible! What happened?"

"I poked myself with a chopstick and injured my eye."

"I sat on a tack."

"I rode my bicycle into a power pole and dislocated my shoulder."

Here are two other good recent posts from BadAunt at present simple: Speechless and Useless.

p.s. for another good Japan story, this time from "Science and Politics" blogger Coturnix: Fish Eyes.

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At 9:00 AM, Blogger Mitey Mite said...

Here via Michele ... I poked around a bit & found some great stuff ... I'll be back for more.

At 10:48 PM, Blogger The Complimenting Commenter said...

That was a great story. It's cool that you posted from her site. I enjoyed your posts and blog too. Nice work.


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