Thursday, August 30, 2012

Language pyramids

         The following activity is suitable for elementary students of English as a foreign language, especially those who are slow, unmotivated, unfocused, immature or unapt. It will not only boost memory and practise stress variation in word linking, but will also sensitise learners to the mechanisms of word order and structure building.

How to do it?

1. Write a sentence pyramid on the board.

Example:                                      weather
                                                 the weather
                                              the weather can
                                            the weather can be
                                        the weather can be cold
                                   the weather can be pretty cold
                            In Scotland the weather can be pretty cold.
                     In northern Scotland the weather can be pretty cold.

2. Read each line out loud and ask the students to repeat in chorus.
3. If you have time you can ask individual students to repeat as well or read the pyramid by themselves.
4. The last task is the most challenging and creative - given a pilot word ( e.g. box, summer, bottle ..., etc.), the students build their own language pyramids.

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