Number one for English language teachers

Spelling: Spelling tennis

Level: Pre-intermediate, Intermediate, Upper intermediate, Advanced Type: Extra

A team activity for revising spelling or vocabulary.

I call this warmer spelling tennis but it could be used for vocabulary items as well.

Procedure

  • Physically divide two teams with a row of chairs or a line to give some semblance of tennis.
  • Choose a word for them to spell and line them up facing their opponents. Say the word and the first student from Team 1 says the first letter of the word.
  • It then falls to the first player in Team 2 to say the 2nd letter.
  • It then goes back to the 2nd player of the first team and so on until one player says an incorrect letter. They then leave their team and sit out.

It gets quite exciting when you have one player left on a side trying to think of the spelling.

In smaller groups you can group students into pairs/smaller groups so they spell alternate letters in a word.

Variation

I have used a slight variation where two teams bounce lexical items such as 'apple', 'banana', 'pear', etc. back and forth until one team member can't think of an item. It's a lively way to revise vocab. It could be incorporated with throwing a ball or clapping before saying the word to keep a rhythm up. Time limits can be at the teacher's discretion.

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