Grammar activities: Chain story
By Olga Stolbova
Level: Pre-intermediate, Intermediate, Upper intermediate, Advanced Type: Extra
This activity can be used for practising conditionals, though its different variations can serve for reviewing the vocabulary as well. It helps students to link sentences in one text.
I usually use this activity with intermediate students, though it may work with lower-level students. Students enjoy it as it usually results in some funny story which tunes them in a good mood for the rest of the lesson.
Put on the board the pattern “If we have free time, we’ll go to the party” and explain that the students are going to make a story one by one using this pattern. The catch is that every student needs to use the second part of the phrase said by a previous student as the first part of his/hers.
Student 1 If we have free time, we’ll go to the party.
Student 2 If we go to the party, we’ll have fun.
Student 3 If we have fun, we’ll come home late.
Student 4 If we come home late, we’ll miss our test tomorrow. etc.
For revising the vocabulary make cards with vocabulary words you need to revise, one word or expression on each card.
Put the cards face down on the desk in the center. A student who starts, draws the first card and says the first sentence, the next student draws the card and says the second sentence etc.
Students are telling a story, using only one sentence each with one word at a time, trying to make a story go smooth. (You may ask them to use a certain pattern, or may let it go free).
If a class is big, divide it into two teams and make them create their stories simultaneously, taking turns. It will be more fun if both teams have the same beginning.
Instead of (or in addition to) distributing cards with vocabulary items on them, give students the cards with different conjunctions and linking words: and, as soon as, while, but, although, though, however, etc. The students need to tell a story by adding their sentence with the help of the conjunction written on the card. In this activity they are allowed to change the grammar structure of the previous sentence.