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Holidays and Actions Game

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The students make the questions for this game!

Each student gets two or three index cards.

On the bottom right they are instructed to write a holiday of their choice (you may want to brainstorm several holidays before hand.)

On the bottom left they are instructed to write an action that can be done in class (e.g. "stand up" "put your finger on your nose" "jump" "act like a bunny.")

They then list (on the middle of the card), in order of hardest to easiest, three "clues" to help others guess thier holiday. For example, for MLK Jr Day (in the United States) they might say
1) This holiday celebrates the birthday of a famous person.
2) This holiday is celebrated in January in the United States.
3) This person was a famous civil rights leader.

The teacher (or student moderator) will take the card and announce the action listed on the bottom left. This action should be demonstrated for clarification (and for more novice students). This action will become the "buzzer" for that round. In other words, if the action is "stand up," then the first person to stand gets to state what holiday they think the card is describing. Larger classes can be broken into teams, smaller ELL classes can have each individual as their own team.

The teacher will then begin to list off the clues. After each clue, the teacher will pause, giving students a chance to perform the action. If someone performs the action, the teacher will call on that student (or, if many perform, the teacher will call the student they saw performing the action first) and the student will guess the holiday. Once a student guesses, the student either is awarded points (for a right answer) and the round ends, or (for a wrong answer) the student cannot guess for the remainder of that round. (This is to discourage students from blind guessing.) [A round is one card.]

You can design points to go as you please. I suggest 3 points for those who guess after the first clue has been read, 2 for those who guess after the second clue has been read, and 1 for those who guess after the last clue has been read. Either way, some fabulous prize should go to the winner.
This game will reinforce imperative verb forms, holidays, language used to discuss holidays, and is a great way to learn what your students know about different holidays, possibly introducing new international holidays.

Also, the teacher may want to create a few cards of less popular, but well known holidays (e.g. labor day in the U.S.) in case students all pick the same few holidays.

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