- Keywords: Furniture, bedroom items, prepositions
- Learner English level: Low-intermediate to intermediate
- Learner maturity: Junior high school to university
- Preparation time: 5-10 minutes
- Activity time: 50 minutes
- Materials: Blank paper, pencil, example drawing of a bedroom (See Appendix)
Prepositions can be one of the toughest challenges for Japanese learners of English to consolidate in their learning. My Bedroom is a fun and interactive activity in which students work together to practice forming prepositional sentences in a functional and authentic way. To maximize student practice, the activity can be done as many times as the teacher wants depending on time availability.
Step 1: Prepare an example drawing of your own bedroom. Make sure your example is a simple sketch, as you want students to only spend a few minutes drawing their own bedrooms during the activity.
Step 2: Prepare some example sentences using the target language (See Appendix).
Step 1: Tell students you have drawn a picture of your bedroom (but don’t show it yet). Ask them to guess what furniture and items are in the room.
Step 2: Do a gap-fill activity by writing some example sentences on the whiteboard, omitting the prepositions, and asking students to provide the missing words (i.e., There is a teddy bear __ the bed. There is a guitar ___ _____ ___ the bed.).
Step 3: Give students 3 minutes to draw a quick sketch of what they think your bedroom looks like.
Step 4: Show your picture and give feedback on whether students’ predictions are correct. Ask a couple of volunteers to show and compare their sketch to yours.
Step 5: Tell students that they are also going to draw a picture of their bedrooms and practice describing the layout using prepositional sentences.
Step 6: Distribute a blank piece of paper to all students and have students fold their paper in half.
Step 7: Tell students to make a rough sketch of their bedroom on one half of the paper. Give them 3 minutes to do this.
Step 8: Tell students to write six to 10 sentences on the other half of the paper, using prepositions of place to describe what their room looks like. Give them 10 minutes to do this.
Step 9: Have students work in pairs. Tell student A to give descriptions of their bedroom to student B. Student B listens and uses the back side of the paper to make a rough sketch of student A’s bedroom.
Step 10: Make pairs switch roles so that each student has a chance to describe their bedroom and draw their partner’s room.
Step 11: Tell student A and student B to compare their sketches.
Step 12: If you have time, get students to pair up with different partners and redo the activity for extra practice.
This activity gives students the opportunity to work cooperatively and communicate in English about a topic of interest. Students will have to utilize a variety of useful skills to complete the task. This activity is most suitable for low intermediate students as the vocabulary and grammar are relatively simple. However, you can adjust the level of difficulty by incorporating higher levels of grammar and vocabulary, to make it suitable for higher level students.
The appendix is available below: