Present Progressive Classroom Games
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Present Progressive Classroom Games


Hi teachers! Today I want to share with you some of the present progressive activities that I use with my beginning English students. These are primarily speaking practice activities, but I’ll also share some ways that I expand them to include more writing as well. Down in the description, you can find a link to a blog post that has free downloads of these activities, or you can use the ideas to create your own using your own preferred vocabulary. Now let’s get started. In this particular class I was using vocabulary from the Oxford Picture Dictionary alongside the grammar I was teaching. While studying the present progressive, we were using vocabulary about household tasks, so those are the verbs that you’ll see for these activities, but you could adapt it to use any vocabulary that you like. The first activity is for repetitive oral practice, and it’s a board game. For this activity, for each group of 3 to 5 students, you will need one die, game tokens for each student, but I often use coins or small scraps of paper, and then one game board. The game board, which you can download from the link below, has a series of pictures of the vocabulary that we were using in the class, and students will take turns rolling the die and moving their token, and when they land on a space, they’ll make a sentence. For example if I land on this space, my sentence will be, “He is vacuuming the rug,” and after I finish my sentence, the next member of my group will take a turn rolling the die, and move and make their own sentence. The game board also includes a few “go forward” and “go back” spaces to keep the game interesting as we go. This game allows students to practice the grammar again and again and to really form that structure in their minds. It’s also great to have an activity that doesn’t really involve any reading or writing. I don’t know about, you but in my class I have several low literacy learners and it can be great for them to participate alongside their classmates in a way that doesn’t make them stressed out about the reading and writing. Students in the groups can correct each other’s mistakes and self-correct when they make mistakes in the grammar. As students’ skills develop, they can play this game with affirmative sentences, but they can also play it with negatives and with questions. The second activity is another speaking activity with an optional writing component, and it uses the same vocabulary and I’ve used the same images as well. In this case, students practice the question, “What are you doing?” Each student will have a card that looks something like this. It has that target question, “What are you doing?” and it has their response sentence, “I’m vacuuming the rug.” Students will go around to their classmates and ask them, “What are you doing?” and classmates will respond with the sentence on their card. For example, “I’m vacuuming the rug,” or “I’m making the bed,” or one of many more sentences that are included in the game. Then students will take a note of their classmate’s name and what they’re doing. At the end of the activity, all the students can sit down and work on writing out sentences about what each of their classmates was doing. I hope these two present progressive activities will be useful in your English classroom. Please let me know if they work well for you, or if you have any other awesome present progressive activities that I can try in my classroom. Have a great class!

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