I've tried to play a yes-no game with Form 12 students (3rd year of Ch). There were only two of them present, the best in the class. To my amazement, we spent 2 lessons speaking only Chinese! About different topics, chosen randomly from a list.

The y/n game was to guess an animal. A poster with animals was given to the ss for more ideas. Then we analyzed how good the questions they asked were. During the game it got clear that some criteria should be stated in the beginning.

Eg, on the poster a dog was black, and I didn't know what to answer to the question 'Is it brown?'. Like me, the ss floated from speaking about the animals on the poster and in general too... Also, questions can't be about subjective values, like 'Is it beautiful?'. A question which leads the game to a fast finish is 'Is is in the bottom part of the poster?'. Or maybe it's a good question??? :)

Yeah, I also wanted to play with 2nd year students, but after the holiday it became impossible, as I saw. So, I'm waiting for a more suitable moment. It's a really good exercise. And can be done for any topic.


# Alexander Sokol 2011-01-10 08:32
I am glad to hear that the Yes-No game worked for your students. I am not sure I got the problem with the questions, though. For example, why couldn't you answer the question 'is it brown?' If the dog you had in mind was black, then the answer to the question is evident ('no'). As to subjective values, well, they can ask. What they should come to realise with time is that the answer leads them nowhere, as you may believe that the dog is beautiful while their opinion may be different.
# Marija Nikolajeva 2011-01-10 19:47
Probably you're right :) But still, if my dog is a 'black dog', then it should be 'black male 12-year-old dog living in a flat'. Because, for example, if you think about ducks, female ones are brown, but male ones are black-grey with green necks... ???... My message is that if we give any extra materials for more ideas, like posters, we should agree with the students that it is/not the thing on the poster. Aaahhh, anyway, it's too complicated, reminds me of Chinese philosophy (a white horse is not a horse), the aim is to make the students speak and this aim is achieved by this task. Right?
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