Go Fish with Polite Requests
Go Fish is a great game because you can use it with all students from absolute beginners learning how to ask a simple question ("do you have a ___?") on up. Recently, I've been using it with advanced students as a way to learn or review ways to make POLITE REQUESTS. (Very simple card games are also nice because you can teach vocabulary like "deck," "to deal cards," "jack/queen/king/ace" etc. without too much confusion.) The nice thing about Go Fish is that you can do one round with the regular Go Fish rules and then go around the circle again and again with different ways of asking a question. For example:
Round 1: Do you have a 5? No. Go Fish.
Round 2: Excuse me, could you please lend me a 5? OR Can I borrow a 5 from you? I'd love to, but I don't have one/any. Please go fish.
Round 3: Would you mind lending me a 5? I'm so sorry, but I'm all out. I'm afraid you'll have to go fish.
and on like that.
Be sure to teach the different between "borrow" and "lend".
For those unfamiliar with Go Fish, the basic rules are as follows:
Each player is dealt 5 cards, and the rest are put in a pile in the middle. The object is to get pairs of cards with the same number on them (colors and suits don't matter at all). If a player has a pair, s/he can put it face down, thus discarding it. The first person to discard or otherwise get rid of all their cards wins.
The first player begins the game by asking another player for a certain kind of card (see above). If the other player has one, s/he hands it over. Otherwise, s/he tells the first player to Go Fish, i.e. pick the top card off the pile in the middle. Either of these answers ends the turn. The next person in the circle then asks someone for a card, etc.
Please be so kind as to have fun with this game!
Julia D. Boston, Massachusetts, USA
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