Friday, 13 October 2017

Teachers Resource - Gap Fill Font

The Grammar Collection is taking a short, well deserved break while I stock up on new activities for you.

So, in the meantime, I feel it is time for something a little different.

The majority of you, I am sure, will use gap fill activities in your classes. They are a great way to practice and consolidate new vocabulary in a more natural (written) context and are also great for working on grammar and tenses. 

If you are anything like me, you write up the text and then replace the words you want your students to fill in, with a series of underscores. So you end up with a sentence that looks like this "My name is Matt and I really ______ chocolate". Or, you might include one line per letter to give your students that extra bit of help. Which leads to a sentence that looks like "My name is Matt and I really _ _ _ _ chocolate". Which is fine, but you either end up with gaps that aren't long enough for the intended word or having to carefully count the letters of each word to make sure you have enough underscores.

With this in mind I have taken a step into the world of font design and created "Gap Fill". Once you've installed it (instructions below) all you need to do is type up, or copy and paste your text into a word document, highlight the words you want your students to fill in and change the font to "Gap Fill". This will automatically create the exact number of spaces for any and every word! It won't change any punctuation but letters (both upper and lower cases) and numbers will change.

Hopefully, it will make your life easier and your gap fills better!

Installation Instructions

Windows 10/8/7/Vista
Select the font files (.ttf, .otf or .fon) then Right-click > Install
in any version of Windows
Place the font files (.ttf, .otf or .fon) into the Fonts folder, usually C:\Windows\Fonts or C:\WINNT\Fonts 
(can be reached as well by the Start Menu > Control Panel > Appearance and Themes > Fonts).

Mac OS X 10.3 or above (including the FontBook)

Double-click the font file > "Install font" button at the bottom of the preview.

You will probably need to restart the program you want to use the new font in, before it appears in the font list.

Saturday, 7 October 2017

Grammar Collection - The Parts of Speech Poem

Grammar Collection - The Parts of Speech Poem

I know the Grammar Collection has already provided you with one activity (or a set of, I should say) but can you really have enough activities to practice the various parts of speech? (the answer, in case you are struggling, is NO!)

So, here is another one. The Parts of Speech Poem gives your students a catchy, and potentially easy, way to remember the 8 parts of speech, and some examples. All your students have to do is fill in the gaps with the missing words and voila!

Saturday, 30 September 2017

Grammar Collection - We Will Have Been Playing

Grammar Collection - We Will Have Been Playing

Of all the twelve tenses in English, the perfect continuous tenses often cause the biggest headache for both teachers and students alike.

"We Will Have Been Playing" is a board game to practice using the future perfect continuous. each square contains a verb and a positive, negative, positive question or negative question marker. All the students have to do, when they land on the square, is to make a positive or negative sentence, a positive question or a negative question using the verb. They will, of course, need to change the tense of the base verb. Some squares contain a forfeit, to make the game more interesting.

All you have to do id download, print, hand out to your students along with counters and dice and let them play (you might well need to demonstrate the game, or at least give them instructions).

Sunday, 24 September 2017

Grammar Collection - Genderbread

Grammar Collection - Genderbread
Whereas most words in English can be used for any gender, some nouns are gender specific. For example, you would never call a man "a policewoman" nor would you call a woman "a king". People will often know what a student means if they use the wrong gender, but it is still important to know the differences.

Genderbread contains 99 noun cards (for both humans and animals (remember that some of the nouns for male animals are the same as for the both category)) and 1 sorting sheet. The sorting sheet has 3 categories (male, female and both). You, as a teacher, just need to cut the cards and give them to your students (you can split your class smaller groups or keep them together) along with a sorting sheet. Then have them sort the cards into the appropriate genders.

There are also 30 blank cards, for you or your students to add their own nouns to sort or for others to make sentences.
For further practice you can have students pick a random card and make a sentence.

Saturday, 16 September 2017

Grammer Collection - Nerns

Grammar Collection - Nerns
Nerns is a game to practice nouns and verbs in the same sentence!

As usual, print the board (there is a colour and a black and white version included in the pack), split your class into groups and give each group a board, dice and counters.

Each square has a verb (the first word) and a noun (the second word). All the students have to do is produce a sentence using both the verb and the noun. They can produce a positive  or a negative sentence or a question, as long as they use both the verb and the noun!

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

BONUS - Henry's Game

Today marks the first birthday of my first nephew so, to celebrate, I have created a PPT reward game!

Henry's Game is a simple, fun game. All your students have to do is to decide which of the eight items will make the baby Henry laugh! Once they have produced the language or behaviour you want them to, they come to the Interactive Whiteboard and click on one of the items. If they get a laugh, they are successful. Only one item at a time will get a laugh and it is constantly changing, so they never know which one will get the result!

Happy playing, and Happy Birthday Henry!

Saturday, 9 September 2017

Grammar Collection - Confusion

Grammar Collection - Confusion

English is full of words that can be, and are, easily confused. And as all teachers will know, one confused word in a sentence can make all the difference to the meaning, the fluency and other people's understanding.

Confusion contains 28 pairs, and 1 trio, of commonly confused words for learners to use in sentences. This should help them understand the difference in meaning and use. As with all Matt-Erials board games, just print out copies for small groups, give them dice and counters and have them roll the dice and make the sentences.

Sunday, 3 September 2017

Bonus - Duck

ESL Matt-Erials has reached its 2017 target of 20 thousand page views a whole 4 months early!

So, as a thank you to all of you wonderful teachers out there for all your views, support and (hopefully) downloads, here is a small bonus activity for you all to download!

Duck is a fun, fairly fast activity for kids. All you need to do is download it and put it on your Interactive Whiteboard, Smart Board or computer. Use it as a reward for language production or good behaviour. All your students need to do is come up to the board and find the duck under the bubbles!

Have them click on the bubbles in the bath to remove them and find the duck. 
There are 8 different levels, with a duck in a different place on each level. Choose the level you want to use with your class, from the first page, and have them play. If you need to go back to that first page again, click on the bathroom mat at the top of the screen and you will be taken back


Gramar Collection - Grammar Alert

Grammar Collection - Grammar Alert

Certain, simple words in the English language are easily confused and can very easily change the meaning of a sentence if they reused wrong. Admittedly there are many of these words, and Grammar Alert doesn't cover all of them, but it does include you're, your, they're, their, there, we're, were, where, then, than, to and too.

Print out the page of cards with the 12 words and the 12 meanings and have your students match the words and meanings, to see what your students know. Once they have the words, and meanings, correctly matched have them try to use each word in a sentence. It's not a difficult activity but it can be very helpful with lower level groups to help them improve the basics!

P.S. An activity to celebrate reaching the age view target will be available soon...

Wednesday, 30 August 2017

2017 Target Reached!

Matt-Erials would like to thank each and every one of you for your continued support, views and downloads! At the start of the year I set myself the seemingly over ambitious target of getting 20, 000 page views before chritsmas. 

I checked quickly this morning and, to my surprise, I have received 20, 010 views already!

A celebration is, therefore, in order...

Keep your eagle eyes (should that perhaps be hyphenated?) peeled for a few activities appearing in celebration!

Thanks everyone!