Elephant, Palm Tree, Boat
Community Level 2 - Familiar
How to Play: The group sits in a circle. The teacher points to a player and says her name, following immediately with the name of one of three objects: Elephant, Palm Tree, or Boat. For example, the teacher says, "Sandra, elephant." This player and the players immediately to the right and to the left, stand. The three players then pantomime the named object, using the following specific movements.
- Elephant - To mimic a trunk, the center player joins both arms together, points them downward, and sways them from side to side. The two players on either side make half-circles with their arms to suggest ears.
- Palm Tree - To mimic windblown fronds, the center player raises both arms high in the air and sways them. The other two players hold their arms out to the side and wave them like a hula dancer.
- Boat - Pretending to be a pirate, the center player stands on one leg, covers one eye with one hand, and salutes with the other. The players on either side paddle the boat.
When the trio has successfully pantomimed the object, the teacher points to another student and says, for example, "Shona, boat." Shona then becomes the middle person of the next trio, who will pantomime a boat.
Plan for Success: In this fast-paced game, students need to think quickly and work together to pantomime different objects. Since students will need to learn and remember nine new movements, it's important to practice the movements with them before starting the game. With a young class, you might want to play the game naming only one object. Younger students might forget of whom the trio consists. To help them remember, practice calling the name of a student and forming groups (but not doing the pantomime). When you first play the game, go slowly, allowing plenty of time for the players to make the shapes. As the game progresses, you can pick up the pace.
Variations: You can ask the students to suggest new objects or creative movements for depicting them.