Man from Mars
This is a fast one with no preparation needed. I use this to practice relative clauses, defining and asking about unknown things or vocabulary.
- Write a list of random words on the board such as: curry wurst, coconut, street cleaner, consultant etc.
- I pretend to be a “man from Mars” (walk and look funny) and my English is not so good and I don’t know the culture of this country very well. I randomly stop next to a participant and point at something on the board or in the room and ask “What is that?”
- The participants should answer using “It’s a thing which…” “We use it when…” etc.
- I sometimes follow-up by asking what particular words mean.
This is not realistic in the sense of aliens landing on Earth but very realistic if you think about the fact that they may need to ask what certain things are or have to explain things that they don’t know the word for in English. This can be really fun and gets them thinking how to describe things. I find it useful to bring to their attention that they might find themselves in a situation where they see/hear a word but don’t know the meaning and someone will often explain it using such constructions OR if they don’t know the word they are looking for, they can use this construction, e.g. at the hotel “Can we have a thing which you put your head on in the bed?” And it’s just good, silly fun!