It’s the national holiday of Ireland: Saint Patrick’s Day! Whilst folks at home celebrate, you can share your love for this tradition by using St. Paddy’s Day inspired lesson plans and activities. Not only will this expose your students to this great holiday (which they most definitely want to learn about!) but it will also help boost enthusiasm during class.
So, for some suggestions and ideas on what you can do with your class, scroll downwards and pick your favourites.
‘Find the pot of gold’
What you’ll need: a die, a board, and counters.
This fun little board game will be sure to keep your students busy. Suitable for children of all ages, players aim to make it from one side of the board to the other to win. On their way, players will land on squares with images inside them. Your students must say a sentence related to whatever picture is inside the square to carry on. It’s a great way for your pupils to learn grammar as well as learn about St. Patrick’s Day.
To play this activity, you’ll need to have a sheet (preferably with facts on the patron saint of Ireland) and a number of broken up phrases. The phrases should relate to the fact sheet so that your students can match them together, creating a grammatically correct sentence. Doing this will again teach your pupils more about Saint Patrick as well as English vocabulary and grammar.
Everyone loves a quiz! Test your students’ knowledge of this holiday with a number of questions. This actually suits all learning levels, just up the difficulty for more advanced students.
Choose a few words (within a sentence for context) related to Ireland, St. Patrick etc. and jumble them up. Your students now have to try and figure out what the original English word is. This forces them to think about the spelling of the word as well as how it fits into the sentence.
There are plenty of worksheets out there for you to use freely, such as the British Council’s here. Or, alternatively, you could simply make your own. A mixture of fact sheets and quizzes to do with traditions, customs, and the history of the holiday will prove to be a challenging, but fun activity for your students.
Fill in the blank
Here, students choose from a pool of words that should all fit into blank spaces within sentences. Write a paragraph or two about St. Patrick’s Day and leave keywords out so that the children or teens that you teach have to think hard about which word sounds right grammatically.
This is where it starts to get a little bit trickier! Decide upon a topic for your class to talk about, give them a set time to note down their points and then let them discuss all they know about St. Patrick’s Day in English. As they are encouraged to speak with classmates in English, they will remember more. In fact, students may even be able to debate on whether their classmate’s statements are correct.
‘The gift of the gab’
Probably the most complex on this list, as well as the most fun, this is a perfect activity for advanced students.
You will need: a bag full of your students’ names on slips of paper, a small rock, and cards describing scenarios in which someone must be convinced to do something.
Based off of the famous Blarney Stone legend, that if you kiss said stone you will be granted mastery when it comes to speech and flattery. In this game, you must pull a name out of the bag and then tell the chosen person to kiss the small rock (which is acting as a replacement Blarney Stone). Then, the student must take one of the pieces of card and role-play whatever scenario is described (i,e, convincing your mother to let you stay over at a friend’s). This way, students practice their English through this role-play, which demands some quick thinking and a good knowledge of English.
That’s all for now – hopefully your students have as much fun with these as you do planning them!
Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!