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Book Club and Reading Games: Flashcard fun, Audio challenge, Spot the genre

March 10, 2015 by Nóra Wünsch-Nagy

Games, especially when they are done in a relaxing moment (or, on the other hand, when you want to shake things up a bit) can help you create memorable moments in the English classroom. You can dedicate some time to games once a week to promote your extensive reading programme. Try our activities to help your students with storytelling, the visualization of stories, extensive listening and recognizing genres. Even if your students are not avid readers (yet!), these samples can help them experience the English language in action, and they will get a feel for stories and literary texts.

Flashcard fun with young learners

Do you like using the flashcards with the young readers? Each Helbling Young Reader comes with a set of high-quality flashcards which use the illustrations of the reader they accompany. They can be used in many creative ways, not only for the presentation of the new vocabulary.

Do some flashcard art! Download the flashcards from the Young Readers website. Print the cards, but you don't necessarily need to cut them up. Give each student or group of student a set of cards after you have finished reading the story. Ask your students to use the cards to retell the stories, and they can create a collage with their favourite images. As they are recreating the story visually, they can practise the vocabulary and retell the plot.

In this example you can see the wind (both text and image) represented, and you can see lots of objects and animals in the air. You can ask your students to decide which objects and animals can really fly, and which ones are up in the air because it is windy. Ask them to point at the objects which should be in the garden. Your students can then create their own collages.


the kite

A collage made using the flashcards for the young reader The Kite written by Rick Sampedro, illustrated by Stefano Misesti. © Helbling Languages

Download the free 'How to use your Helbling Young Readers Flashcards'  guide for more ideas.

Audio challenge

The audio recordings that come with each Red and Blue reader can be turned into a fun listening challenge. Choose five titles and download the audio samples from the online catalogue on the Helbling Readers website. Download the cover images of each title you have chosen and copy them onto a single sheet.

Ask your students to form groups, and play the audio recordings in order. The groups have to identify the titles by listening to the audio recording you play. The first group to guess the first answer gets five points, then the second answer is worth four points, the third one three points. The group with the highest number is the winner.

For more on Extensive Listening, read this post on our Blog: Read and Listen: Extensive Listening in the Reading Classroom

Discussion topics for adults: Who would narrate your favourite book?

Spot the genre

Have some fun with the story samples you can download from the online Helbling Readers catalogue. Print some sample pages from the same set of readers (Red or Blue), cut them up into similar-sized strips. Then stick them onto a piece of paper, to make a text collage. You can stick nine or twelve extracts onto one sheet, taken from 3 or 4 readers. Ask your students to read the extracts, and then they have to decide which pieces belong to the same story. Ask them to find examples to prove their choice. Is it a horror story? Why? Is it a romance? Which words help you decide? This exercise will help your students implicitly think of language in the context of situation and the register represented in this context.

3 stories
Snippets from three readers: Gulliver's Travels, The Wind in the Willows, The Hound of the Baskervilles. ©Helbling Languages


Plus, remember our Book Club Role Cards. You can download a set of role cards for the Helbling Red and Blue Readers from our Book Club Resources.

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