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Save the City


SUBMITTED BY: Patrick Bickford  



GRAMMAR:Present Progressive Verb

EXAMPLE: Koji is cooking.

DATE ADDED:06-19-07 


Small Classes (1-15 Students)ÒLarge Classes (16-39 Students)ÓHuge Classes (40+ Students)ÔBad/Misbehaved ClassesÕ




35-50 min.
7 Votes: 3.5 Stars

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BRIEF OUTLINE: Students practice creating and saying Present Progressive Verb sentences by choosing random names and verbs out of grab bags and forming sentences.  Once their team has cleared a level, they can shoot at bombs gradually making their way down the chalkboard to the city  below.



  • SaveTheCity worksheet:
    • Bomb Assembly: Cut the bombs out of the provided worksheet below, fold along dotted lines and glue the two ends together.  A brisk wind will knock the bombs off their platforms without some weight.  One suggestion is find a cardboard box, cut up small pieces and glue the pieces to the inside of the bomb.
    • Bomb Platforms: Use a playing card or some other semi-unbendable card and tape it securely to the magnet.  I've tried hot and cold glue, but because of the pounding these bombs take, I've found tape is the best option.  The good thing is you should only need to build 5 platforms.
    • A city to bomb: Draw the city on the chalkboard like the picture shown to the right.  Another option is using buildings students are familar with - Tokyo Dome, Tokyo Tower, local ski hills, big supermarkets in the area, the junior high school, kocho sensei's house, a teacher's house of whom you're not fond of, etc.
    • Shooters: Rubberbands using rolled paper, ping-pong ball shooting gun, suction cup shooting gun.  The list of shooters is endless, but check out the toy section at a 100 yen store.
    • A list of verbs and people's names, with a grab bag to put each into. The verbs grade 1 students should know: cook, talk, go, enjoy, live, clean, do, watch, help, run, have, listen, study, teach, take, be swim, ski, walk, play sports and musical instruments.



1. The object of the game is to save as much of the city as possible. Separate the class into bombing teams. The size of the teams depends on the size of your class.  Each team receives a signature card.  When the students create their target sentences, they must bring the signature card with them to the teacher in order to have the teacher sign off that that student  completed the particular round.

2. The game starts by one member from each team coming and pulling a name and verb out of the grab bags.  Then, they race back to their team and form sentence using the present progressive tense, "Koji is cooking."  Additionally, if you want the students to practice writing, have them write their sentence on a piece of paper, otherwise, once they create a sentence, they race back to the ALT/HRT and say the sentence.  If it grammatically correct, you sign their card and the next student repeats the process

    3 Once the entire group completes a target sentence, it's Save the City time!  Each student takes one shot at the bombs.  If a student shoots a bomb off the platform, their team receives a point.  As one bomb is destroyed, move the platform back to the top of the chalkboard and start the bomb on its decent once again.

      4. Use a timer.  When the timer reaches 0, the round is over.  Everything stops and the bombs are moved down the board closer to the city.  This game will be unfamiliar to the students, so have the initial timer a little longer.  Then, as the students accustomed to the rules, decrease the time.  Also, from plane to city, it should only take 3~4 rounds for the bombs to strike.  You might want to draw horizontal lines across the chalkboard to distinguish how far each bomb is from causing havoc on the buildings.  If a bomb should happen to reach a building, erase the building and replace it with artistic flaming rubble. 



      • To encourage the class to work together as a class in addition to their individual teams by creating a fun punishment for the class if the whole city is destroyed.  For example, make the whole class sing the school song.
      • Once the students get used to the game, secretly insert name cards into the grab bag that have two names written on one card. This practices pluralizing the verb, so "Koji is cooking," changes to "Koji and Ayumi are cooking."
      • Try putting two verbs on one card, "Takumi is studying and eating.



      Suggestions of names the students might know: Tsuyoshi Kusanagi (SMAP), George Tokoro (TV/musican), Masami Hisamoto (TV), Masatoshi Hamada (TV), Hitoshi Matsumoto (TV), Sanma Akashiya (TV/comedian), Akiko Wada (singer), Papaya Suzuki (TV/comedian), Mino Monta (TV millionaire gameshow), Goro Inagaki (SMAP), Masahiro Nakai (SMAP), Takuya Kimura (SMAP), Shingo Katori (SMAP), Hitomi Furuya (TV/singer), Natsumi Abe (TV/singer), Riki Ishikawa (TV/singer), Ryoko Yonekura (TV/actress), Noriko Fujiwara (TV/actress), students’ names, teachers’ names, etc.



      • A good idea is to run through the proper way to use the props for the game because students will break them, which can be pricey after a while.  Warn them their team will lose points if they break anything.

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