The Alphabet race classroom strategy is a great way to revise vocabulary and concepts that has been taught in a unit of work or across a topic.
Here is how to do it:
- Students either work individually, in pairs or in small groups
- Write the alphabet down one side of a piece of paper / mini whiteboard
- Students think of a word beginning with each letter of the alphabet from the unit of work / topic that they have been learning about
- The winners are the students that finish first
I’ve used this strategy in a wide range of different ways, in content classrooms and my EAL lessons. Students love the competitive element of the alphabet race and of course love being the winners.
After the race has finished you could go around the classroom and ask students to read out words from their list.
As an extension you could have every student standing and they read words from their lists and if any other student has the same word they both have to sit down. The winners will be the last group standing. This part of the game makes students think deeper about the words that they choose.
How I would use this strategy in curriculum contexts?
- After a unit of work in any topic, I would use this strategy. It is a good way to recall vocabulary that has been learned throughout a unit of work.
- As a way to check prior learning – using this strategy could help you discover what your learners know about a topic prior to studying it. You could also use it throughout a unit of work or scheme of learning.