Filler Activity – “Memory Dictation”

"Memory Dictation" - Filler Activity (theTEFLblog)

Memory Dictation

(Introduction & Review of Vocabulary, Listening, Memory, Spelling)

This activity can be used as a “Warm-Up” or a “Filler”.

The teacher explains to the students that he/she will be saying aloud, 10-12 words (the number is irrelevant) and that they must first just listen carefully. After all of the words have been spoken, the students must write down all of the words that they can remember.

These words can be taken from: previously learned material, upcoming material (as an introduction), or commonly mis-spelled or confused words (as entertainment).

As with any activity, the “rules” and scope of the exercise should be made to be appropriate for the teacher, students, and situation. But here a rough guideline that can be adhered to, in order to ensure that the activity runs smoothly.

  1. Students should listen first without writing anything
  2. Students remain quiet while listening and writing (no talking with each other, or asking questions either the teacher of each other)
  3. They should only need or be given a few minutes to write down the words (otherwise they will be prone to looking at each others’ papers
  4. The teacher then asks students to say the words that they remember and to spell them.
    • This step can be done in a number of ways:
      1. they can shout out what they remember
      2. they can be called on individually
      3. they can be asked to come up to board to write them down (if facilities make this possible)
  5. Some sort of reward system could be given (however this is a system that is sometimes contested with certain people, groups, schools, etc.

Other ways that this can be altered:

Any class-room activity can be altered in numerous different ways. For example:

  • The activity can be done in teams
  • The activity can act as the pre-cursor or sequel to a “scrambled” word exercise
  • These words can then be used to create sentences, stories, etc.

The possibilities are only as limited as the teacher and/or students make them.

If you have any suggestions you would like to share, I’m sure that they will be appreciated.

Have An Excellent Day!


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