Benefits of Games & Playing Games for Greater Learning

Benefits of Games
Submitted by G. Uuganchimeg
Most language teachers cannot imagine teaching without games.  Games help focus attention on specific grammar points, vocabulary and language functions.  They can be used to practice and to communicate and then, later, for review.  Both slow and fast learners can participate.  Games ensure maximum student participation.  Finally, they are useful for improving all four skill areas:  speaking, listening, reading, and writing. 

Playing Games for Greater Learning
Submitted by R. Natsagbayar

Everyone likes to play, especially children.  Why not learn by playing?  Every Mongolian child knows this game and has played it.  It can very useful for studying English.  This game is “Dye.” 

One student is the leader, one is the wolf, and the others are the “dye.”  The leader gives a colored circle to each person- red, yellow, blue, etc.  The wolf knocks on the door. 

                        Leader:  Who is there?

                        Wolf:  I am a wolf.

                        Leader:  What do you need?

                        Wolf:  I need a dye. 

                        Leader:  Which color?

                        Wolf:  Red.

                        Leader:  How much?

                        Wolf:  50 (The wolf can say any number.)

The leader claps on the wolf’s palm.  The leader says 10, 20, 30, 40, 50.  At this time, the student with the red color runs away and the wolf must chase him.  If he is caught by the wolf, he becomes the wolf’s baby.  If he is not caught, he comes back home and may play again. 

To modify this game, half the students stand side by side in one line.  The other half stand side by side in another line but facing the first line.  The two lines should be some distance apart.  One line receives the colored dye.  The other line has signs on which the colors are written.  When the wolf calls the color, the child with that dye runs to the child who has the word correct sign.  If the wolf does not catch him, he can return home and play again.  If the wolf catches him, he becomes the wolf’s baby. 

The teacher can use this game in many different ways.  For example, I used it for the topics of clothes, animals, and numbers.  The rules can be changed a little if necessary to suit the topic. 

Students are never bored when they learn by playing games. 
Uuganchimeg is a teacher at Sumber Soum School in Dornod Aimag.  She recently completed her first year of EXCEL.  Natsagbayar teaches at Secondary School #1 in Sainshand, Dornogovi Aimag and is an EXCEL graduate.