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Baseball-Inspired English Activity
This game can be used for all ages, any subject/grammar, and any occasion. However if there is concern, 5th grade up is very safe.
This activity can be used for any target English. It does not have to be yes or no questions as the cards above indicate. However, the subject/grammar needs to be able to be conceptualized into a 2 person exchange/conversation.
"What did you do yesterday?"
"I studied math. What did you do?"
Start by teaching the target grammar to the class and practice it several times.
- Split the class into two teams. If you have an odd number, the HRT /OTE must play as the teams have to be even.
- Teams can choose a name or one can be assigned to them (example: Kimchi vs Umeboshi).
Distribute the Yes and No cards. Every student gets one of each.
- On the board, draw a baseball style scoreboard.
- Substitute in the team names for home and away, The numbers along the top are the innings, or rounds that will be played. Those numbers below the 1 through 9 are the points the teams get every round.
- At the start of the first inning, students pair up with another player from the opposing team. They sit down and put their cards upside down in front of them so the Yes/No can't be seen.
- Once all the pairs are sitting and quiet, (making sure there are no same team pairs) choose a side (example: Kimchi) to start each round. This choice must stay consistent throughout.
- At this point, the students say the target grammar, with the (Kimchi) team initiating the dialogue. After they have completed the dialogue, the Kimchi player has one chance to pick one of the face down Umeboshi players cards. Then they flip the card over.
- If the card says Yes, they get 1 point for their team. If the card says No, they get 0 points. After a few moments, have students who get a Yes card/point stand up. Count them, and put that point total next to their team name under the first inning on the scoreboard.
- It is then the opposite team`s turn. Within the same pair, the opposite team`s player (example: Umeboshi) starts the dialogue. Then they choose from the (Kimchi`s) two cards. Repeat step 5 to complete the first inning.
- Students will stand up, find a new partner from the other team, and sit to begin inning 2. Repeat steps 4-6. At the end of 9 innings, the team with the higher total is the winner.
To add interest, make special innings that have bonuses or special rules. For example, Inning 7 is double points. Inning 4 is Valentines where it has to be boy/girl pairs, Inning 6 is talk in a funny voice, etc.
Since its 50/50 chance, every kid will eventually get at least one point for their team over the course of the game, so students of all ability levels can help their team.
Watch out for accidental pairings of two students from the same team, or for students skipping the dialogue and going straight to the card choice.