ESL Activity: Circle Memory Sentences
A good icebreaker or review speaking activity for all levels.
This activity is especially good for reviewing vocabulary when you have 15 minutes left at the end of class! Simply write some vocabulary words learned recently, then ask for volunteer to go first. (The volunteer will be very glad he/she did so!) Once you have your volunteer, ask him/her if you should go around the class clockwise or counter-clockwise. The first student must say a sentence using one of the vocabulary words on the board, which you can then cross out. The second student must say what the first person said, plus a sentence of his/her own, using one of the remaining vocabulary words on the board. Each student will have to say everything that was said before them, and the last student will have to say the most. A bit daunting, but also a bit of fun, and a great way to review vocab! (Pay attention: the students may challenge you to say everyone’s sentences at the end!)
This can also be very useful when learning different tenses! For example, on Monday, you can ask the students, "What did you do this weekend?" Going around the circle, each student says a Past Tense sentence, as well as all of the sentences said before him/her.
This game can also be adapted as an icebreaker: Have everyone introduce themselves and say an additional sentence about themselves (such as, “My name is Brian, and my favorite color is orange.”). The second person must say what the first person said (“His name is Brian and his favorite color is orange.”) as well as a statement about him/herself (“My name is Jane, and I have a pet cat.”). Each student will have to say everything that was said before them, and the last student will have to say the most.