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Resolution Solution

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Aim: To get students back into "English-mode" after the holidays

Level: low-intermediate to advanced; easy to adapt

In many countries, there is usually a break before Januray 1. During the break, chances are students haven't been speaking too much English. To "ease" them back into it, I like to use this activity which plays upon the idea of New Year's Resolutions.

I like to have my students come up with various resolutions to certain "problems". In order to get them to think creatively, I prompt them with fill-in-the-blank resoultions.

To begin, I first discuss the idea of resolutions-cultural implications, etc. Then, I write a series of 7-10 fill-in-the-blank resolutions on the board. I assign students a partner, and ask them to complete the resolutions.


1. This year I resolve to _______________________________________
(break a certain habit)

2. I will attempt to _________________________________________
(learn a new skill/sport/hobby)

3. In 2001, I will try to _______________________________________
(something specific to help my family

4. This year I will try not to get angry when ____________________

5. In 2001, I want to ___________________________________
(career goal)

6. I will strive to learn more English by _________________________
(certain activity)

7. I resolve to eat more______________ and less _________________.

8. I will get in touch with my friend, ______________, because we have lost contact.

9. I will save money by ___________________________________.

10. I will stay healthy by ________________________________.

Working with a partner allows students to expand ideas.

Once students have finished, I go around and ask for students to volunteer their answers. I then collect the resolutions, and save them for a "later" day. It's fun to check up later in the term to see if students are maintaining any of their resolutions.

Happy New Year!

Andrea DiBenardo
Florida, USA

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