Let’s play!

‘In every real man a child is hidden that wants to play.Friedrich Nietzsche

Children learn a great deal through play…and so do grown ups!  That’s why Touchstone Online despite being aimed at young adult and adult audiences contains a plethora of games for language practice.  Watch the Dune Buggy Dash form Level 1 Unit 4 (the sound in the recording isn’t great but you get the idea!).  What is the language point being practiced here?

Dune Buggy Dash first frame

Dune Buggy Dash Flash Video

How do you play?

A sentence appears at the bottom of the screen with a word missing?  Players ‘drive’ a dune buggy along a road and have to crash into the word that fits in the sentence. It’s basically a gap fill exercise but much more fun!  It’s a lot simpler than Play Station 3 that our students may be more used to but this is a good thing!  It means they spend less time figuring out how to play and more time enjoying the game and doing lots of consolidation work without realising it’s work.

How can I use this?

Well, you can ask students to play at home as extra practise and compare their scores in a forum.  You could set up a Games League to see who gets the highest scores.  You could even use them in class – sparingly of course.  It might be a nice pace changer to play a game in teams and see who gets the highest score.  You could ask the person holding the mouse to close their eyes and have their partner tell them which way to drive.  Fun and chaos to energise a long Friday afternoon lesson!

Have a look through the other games and see which ones you like the best.  Which ones do your students find useful?  Tell us your thoughts.