I wasn’t particularly well prepared for my first Year 11 lesson back from the summer break, mainly as I’m firmly buried beneath avalanche of tasks that I should have found the time to do six weeks previously.
However, in having such little preparation time, I did try a listening activity (inspiration taken from elsewhere…can’t remember where…). Where the student had learnt a range of words today (about school subjects and buildings) I then asked them to close their books and write the word from the list for which I gave a definition in Spanish. They did this on mini white boards and only raise their answer on the count of 3. This meant that students couldn’t copy each other.
e.g. Teacher “Un sitio en que se puede comer durante la hora de comer”
Student writes (hopefully) “el comedor”
Whilst not being particularly earth-shattering, I think this is a good activity because it breaks the need for students to simply answer a question, or tick a box from a CD. It becomes more of an acitivity in both memorising/reinforcing the new words learnt than simply a test. Yes, perhaps the native Spanish speaker on the CD may have a more authentic accent than I do but it does mean that it is easy to react to the class and how easy/difficult they are finding it.
Want to make it more challenging? Why not get students to write a sentence using that word? Or get them to give the definition in the first place.