The English Classroom

A HELPFUL GUIDE FOR PRESERVICE TEACHERS

Design Your Own Machine

English isn’t always about writing. Students can design objects and things that can be worked into their story.

Here is an activity that students can complete to get their creative juices going. Students need to create a machine, includes labels to explain how it words and what it does.

  • A machine that will allows you to fly
  • A machine to erase your teacher’s memory
  • A dog walking machine

Alternatively, you could get students to create a machine that is largely pointless, unhelpful or unnecessary. For example, a machine that turns household spiders into household flies.

Students can then use this machine as the basis for a story!


Truly Shocking Days Diary

Create a diary entry or series of entries – based on exaggerating (either slightly or majorly) the small problems you encounter in everyday life. The smaller the problem, the funnier it is when you exaggerate it. 

Create a diary entry that explores an exaggeration of a small problem. It could be any small, teeny, tiny problem. For example:

  • Being cut off in traffic
  • Favourite food is not available at the canteen
  • Can’t find matching socks

Write a Serious Guide to a Silly Topic

Students need to learn about different text types. How To guides are a helpful way to get students thinking about structure. Your serious guide could be a How To or a Facts about page.

  • How to brush your teeth
  • How to drive a car
  • How to be tough
  • How to be a cat
  • How to be a bad teacher

Map Your Brain

Draw a map of your brain. Where are all the aspects of your personality in your brain? First, get students to list all of the things they enjoy doing. Then get them to think about how much space of each these things occupy in their mind. For example, sport might take up 40%, while school might take up 10%. Encourage students to colour their brain, selecting colours that represent their own central emotions.


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