Hand-made story cubes and ideas for using them in class
One day, while having a little free time exploring the “Biedronka” store, I came across the popular placemats made from bamboo wood. Inspired by other creative teachers, I didn’t hesitate a single moment and bought one to transform it into my first hand-made story cubes.
Here you can see what I created. Well, I thought my drawings would be nicer, but I hope that at least one can recognize what they represent. 😉
There are 30 little hand-made cubes with one picture on each. You cannot roll them, but you can use them in the same way as the story cubes bought in a shop.
Below you will find four ideas for using such hand-made story cubes in class.
1. Divide your class into small groups and ask a representative of each group to pick up 10 cubes out of the 30 provided. You may let them see all thirty pictures and take the ten they want or they may randomly select ten cubes out of a box. Afterwards, have the students prepare a story which involves all ten pictures and set a time limit.
2. Students work in pairs. One student picks up a cube and tells a story whereas the other student listens and tries to remember it. Then the other student retells the story to others in the class.
3. Divide students into small groups. Tell the students that together they will make a story which must involve all the cube pictures they are going to choose. The story is created gradually – once a student picks up a cube and shows the picture to the class, the students create a sentence. When the sentence is ready, students retell all the sentences in the order they have appeared. At that stage students may not take any notes. After creating the story ask the learners to work in their groups and put the story they created on paper.
4. Split your students into small groups and let them choose 10 different cubes. Tell them they have 10 minutes to write ten perfect sentences. This way you can practice a grammar structure you are currently teaching to your students. For example, have them write ten present perfect sentences or ten sentences with the use of adjectives in their comparative forms. The choice is unlimited.
Set a point system – tell the groups they get 10 points to start with. They will get two points for a perfect sentence. Grammar mistakes will cost them one point and spelling mistakes will cost half a point. Any other mistakes will be at your discretion. You may decide on giving them bonus points for something extra, like a compound sentence or Wh- question.
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