Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Awsome Ice Building Activities

I found this post in draft form. I started writing it last year. I thought the idea was kind of funny so I decided to finish it off.

We all know the concept of ice breaking. These are the classes at the beginning of each semester where ESL teachers try to engage the students into thinking about what kind of great people we are. It is a way to make the students feel comfortable about speaking English, and comfortable talking with people from other countries.

The problem though is that sometimes the more boring or unattractive elements of each class might seek friendship beyond the classroom when the class is ended. (I'm talking about adult students, kids who were jerks in class are sometimes pretty cool outside of the class.) Now, a lot of times there is nothing wrong with these people, its just that social engagements take time, and if you are married like me having a social engagement with former students that you aren't that interested in takes time a way from spending time with the wife. It also takes time away from seeing your normal friends that you don't get to see that often.

Activity 1: The airing of annoyances.
Pre-teach the language, "It really annoys me when you________________________."
Sit the students in a chair circle and have the students complain about the person next to them. Go clockwise and counter clockwise so that all can be exposed.

Activity 2: How to make other people feel unimportant.
This activity is a roll play. Put the students into groups of three. Write a monologue for one student while his or her partners send text messages to each other. The person speaking the monologue has to try to get the attention of one of the people sending text messages. You can tie this into the previous lesson.

Activity 3: Computer class.
Teach your students all about how to use facebook. Show them how to use the hide friends button.

Activity 4: Mean art
Have your students design some mean greeting cards.

Mean Happy Birthday Card = write "Happy Birthday," on the receipt of some awesome present for somebody you like better. When the birthday boy or birthday girl asks you what you like to do with your I-pad, tell them you don't know, because you gave it to Joe.

Mean Sorry for your Loss = Get a card printer, find a nice picture of the person who passed, buy some card paper, print the picture onto the card. On the inside write, your sorrow cannot match my apathy.

Mean get well soon = Think of all the things that said person might not need in the future. Think of his or her possessions that you want. Practice with the students the phrase: Oh by the way, if you are not going to be needing________________________________.

Activity 5: No follow up question:
Have your students brainstorm topics that interest them. Leave.

Activity 6: Dream Date:
Have students think of qualities that would make for the perfect divorce.

Activity 7: Music Class:
Ask the students who their favorite singers are. If you are an ESL teacher. You are probably some white Canadian or American man who is in his late twenties or thirties. As the students tell you their favorite musicians, bitch about how pathetic the Korean music industry is. Talk about how everything is so fake and how anorexic the girls look. Talk about how gay the boy band members look. And then search around on youtube for some of the shit that you listen to like The Bareneked Ladies, The Dave Mathews Band, or Counting Crows. Sing along with "Mr Jones," creepily go up to one of the women or men in class and then say "She's looking at you, Oh no she's looking at me." "Grey is my favorite color/I feel so symbolic." If you really want to alienate them....have them learn the whole song.

Activity 8: Organize a special conversation class. Have it meet for three hours every two weeks.

Activity 9: Let's Everybody Loose Face.
Teach reported speech. During an oral test, call students out of class one by one. Ask the students what they think of each other. When you hear something juicy tell the person who the rumor was about. Get them to say something about the other person. Repeat until you have enough dirt on your class to teach them

________ said, "__________________________________," about ____________.
name 1 rumor name 2

Activity 10: Acting Class.
Put the students into pairs. Tell the students to study each others' mannerisms. Tell the students to act out an exaggeration that the other person might feel self conscious about.

Don't actually do these lesson plans. You can hurt people's feelings.

1 comment:

Flint said...

I like them. :) Some could actually be fun to do. :)