Dating likes dislikes
The same games can be played with realia such as plastic fruit, with students reaching into a bag without being able to see inside to select two things that should go together in a game that I call 3D Pelmanism.
Classes who are still learning how to read can also play the game with the cards face up, including perhaps allowing combinations of more than two things.
Likes and dislikes pelmanism Word or picture cards are spread over the table face down and students take turns trying to find pairs of things that their partner likes, e.g. “I think you don’t really like peanut butter and jam sandwiches”.
The objects you give them to describe should be chosen carefully to get a range of language from them in their descriptions. Alternatively, they can pick the two cards and make a sentence with what they guess about their partner’s taste, e.g.
Things I (don’t) like definitions game The language of likes and dislikes can be tied in with freer speaking and vocabulary revision by doing a typical game where students have to explain the object on the flashcard that they are holding until people guess what it is, in this case starting with sentences about likes and dislikes such as “I think everybody here likes it”, “I didn’t use to like it but now I do” and “Monkeys love them”.
Talking about likes and dislikes is something you can usefully start very early in language learning because the word “like” is easily translatable and even very young and very low level students can get a lot out of really communicating by asking and answering “What’s your favourite animal/ colour/ food? For higher level students there is a whole range of language such as “absolutely detest”, and students explaining why they feel that way adds freer speaking to any topic you decide to tackle with this language point. Perhaps after asking questions like “What do you like about it? ”, the other students try to guess which are true sentences and which are lies.
Because you can talk about likes and dislikes of almost any kind (food, art, music, etc), this language point can be tied to almost any topic – and that’s a good thing because students usually pick the key phrases up extremely quickly and so need some vocabulary to make time spent on this point worthwhile. This game can also be played with the kinds of sentence stems that are explained in Likes and Dislikes Sentence Completion above.
You should also think about quickly expanding the phrases you present and practise beyond “I like” and “I don’t like”. Guessing likes and dislikes chains One student makes a list of statements about the probable likes and dislikes of their partners, perhaps taking cards or ticking off things from a list as they do so, stopping whenever they aren’t confident about their next statement.
Phrases I would present, in approximate order, include: - I like… They get one point for each correct statement so far when they stop, but they lose all the points from that round if they make an inaccurate statement before stopping.
Likes and dislikes sentence completion Students are given a worksheet with at least ten of the expressions in the list above as sentence starters, e.g. Students fill in at least half of the sentences then read out just the part that they have written (i.e.