Here's a 20-30 minute activity using months. It also uses the active tense "he plays soccer" "he eats takoyaki" etc..

Downloads: month hints, hint sheet, reference sheet.

There are twelve hint cards; one for each month. Stick them up around the classroom (ideally when students are occupied with something else and not watching you, so that you can hide them somewhat).

  • Really ham up a story about someone stealing something of yours/kidnapping someone or something like that. Make sure students can recognise the word "thief" and its meaning.
  • Say you know some details about the criminal - namely, their yearly schedule. 
    • They have many hobbies, but they like to do certain things each month.
  • The criminal's monthly hobbies are all written somewhere in the class.
  • Put the students in groups of 2-6 students. 
  • Give each group one copy of the hint sheet and reference sheet (or you can give the reference sheet at the end if you prefer).
  • Tell students to assume a role - one is the detective, one the hint receiver, one the scribe.
    • The detective stands up, locates a clue and has to remember what it is. They can't it down. They go back to the group and tell the receiver the clue. He tells the scribe, who writes it down. The receiver is essentially superfluous here, but it involves move kids.
    • Then, they change roles. Make them move around the group in a clockwise direction.
  • When they have all the clues, they can attempt to work out who the criminal is.
    • Then, write it on the hint sheet and raise their hands. First groups gets some kind of prize.
  • To extend time a little, ask volunteers to say what the thief does in certain months and write the answers on the board. Then write the name of the thief and get angry about it. It helps if the names are other first grade teachers.

This is original work by the AccessJ team, so please don't redistribute elsewhere. Link to us!

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