May I play Pictionary?

To introduce and formulate "May I ~ ?" questions with drawings.

This lesson is a result of discussion at Job Training 2012. Special thanks to Bekah Boehm, Gracia BaughGary GrennanBrian Chung, and Jane Moore.

This is a group activity using rules similar to those of the popular Pictionary game. It can be used many for more grammar points other than “May I ~ ?”. See the notes for details.

Before the activity introduce or review “May I ~ ?” using a couple of the verb/illustration flash cards as examples. Follow by drilling the verb flash cards with the students. This should take roughly 10-15mins.

Once the students are up to speed you’re ready to play Pictionary!

  1. Split the students into 5 groups.
  2. Each group designates an artist for the first round.
  3. The ALT will call the artists from each group to the front and show them a card. The card will have a verb and matching illustration on it.
  4. The artists then return to their groups and try to draw what was on the card. They cannot speak. The picture they draw may be different from the card.
  5. The groups works together to guess the verb being drawn. They must then write a “May I ~?” sentence using the verb and race to the front to show the teacher.
  6. The first group to show the teacher a correct sentence earns a point. Rotate the artist for the next round. The game can be continued for as many rounds as desired (depending on the number of flash cards).
  7. Shower the winning team with adulation and/or fabulous prizes as necessary.

This activity can be used with most grammar points. A few examples include "I can ~", "Will you ~?" and "This is a/an ~". The only requirement is that the "~" portion of the sentence can be expressed as an illustration.

Junior High
6 or more flash cards with verbs and matching illustrations, Scrap paper for formulating ideas