Team X

Age Range: -
By: Jill McDougall

This activity is enjoyed by children of all primary ages and all you need is a book of any kind (story book, poetry, information text etc).

Draw up two columns on the board and label them Team X and Team Y. Tell the class that they are all members of Team X and you are the only member of Team Y. Draw a sad face on the top of the Team X column "because you are going to lose the game" and a happy face over Team Y "because I am going to win." You will immediately get howls of protest which will motivate the children to try harder.

Now tell the children that you are going to read them something and then ask some questions about what you have read. If someone answers the question correctly, they score a point. If they are incorrect, you score a point. If anyone talks, you will also score a point.

Warn them that you hate losing and if they are getting too many points, you may try to get someone to talk by asking irrelevant questions. (They love this bit, so if you are getting behind, suddenly put the book down and say something like "Rebecca, do you like netball?")

Read about a paragraph to a page (depending on the class level) and then ask questons about names, dates etc. If it is something like poetry, have them supply missing rhymes. If they are going really well, make it harder by doing an oral cloze where they have to supply the missing word. If a child gets something wrong, and others sigh or moan, then you score a point.

You will have a lovely quiet class for 10-15 minutes and they might learn something as well.

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Amy Thomas

I did this activity with my class today. They are very lively class and struggle to be quiet. I was amazed how well this worked. Not a peep out of the children. One boy even had his hand over his mouth stopping him from shouting out!! It was brilliant. Thank you. :-)))

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