The purpose of this activity is for students to practice asking questions based on key information in order to find and identify which of their classmates is their match.
The teacher prepares and randomly distributes identity cards with a limited amount of key information based on the lesson and unit (e.g., animal identity cards can include: color, size, home location, preferred food). Be sure that at last two copies (for partners) or more (for small groups) of each identity card are handed out so students have partners to match with.
Using the question stems/questions they have learned, students walk around the room and ask classmates questions to find out key information from the identity cards their classmates are holding.
When students find their match, they partner up prepared to move to the next activity in the lesson. A teacher may extend the lesson for fast finishers using the helpful tips below.
Include images on the identity or passport card to facilitate comprehension and recall of key vocabulary.
The information on the identity card should align with the lesson can-do statement, target language chunk(s), and key vocabulary of the lesson.
Scaffold and support students by providing question starters in the form of language chunks so that students can practice asking questions with question words and without question words(e.g., “Does your animal live in the desert? vs. 'Where does your animal live?').
Give fast finishers new cards and ask them to form groups of 3 or more.
Teachers can re-use the identity card in a subsequent lesson to practice asking follow-up questions.
With no scaffolding or support in question and response formation, this activity would shift to the You do alone phase of the GRR.
Variation: Based on the unit, the “identity card” stimulus could be a mock-passport (biographical information); a for sale advertisement (housing, community, neighborhood); a website advertising a school with special programs or offerings (language academy, STEM, performing arts); a lost pet flyer (family, identity); a travel brochure (flight schedule, tour schedule); a restaurant flyer (menu, hours, prices), etc.
Provide images to increase comprehensibility.
Students at lower grades or lower proficiency levels can ask questions with words or phrases or respond with a word or words.
For Intermediate level students:
- Create some identity cards that have some information in common and some not in common, requiring students to ask additional and multiple questions
- Instead of identity cards, create problem statements, short resumes (education-based, skills-based, experience-based, etc.), descriptions (items for sale, homes, properties, vacation resorts, etc.) and ask students to apply key vocabulary and target grammar in developing questions to solve a problem or find a problem. You do together/you do alone.
Teacher-created identity cards that align with the lesson can-do statements.