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What are They Doing?


This activity has young learners work on the present continuous form while at the same time increase their passive vocabulary skills of descriptive adjectives through recognition. You will need a number of magazines, perhaps two or three per group, for this activity. There are two stages to this activity. The first is teacher centered with the teacher asking students to find various things. The second (optional) stage is student centered with students taking responsibility for creating the questions.

Aim: Descriptive adjectives; present continuous; passive recognition skills

Activity: Recognition game using magazines

Level: Eight years and older


  • Divide the class into a few groups. Give each team a fun name to help the competitive spirit of the game. Distribute the magazines to the groups, if possible there should be more magazines than Young Learner in each team.
  • Describe something that the teams should look for, Example: Find a thin man relaxing and watching TV . Young learners quickly look through their magazines to find a picture that is similar to the picture you have described. When they have found a picture, the team shouts 'Found!' and gets a point. The first team to get five points wins the round.
  • In the next stage of the game, ask students to take their magazines and create a number of questions for other teams based on pictures in their magazines.
  • Have two teams pair up and swap magazines. At this point, the teams, and young learners, should alternate asking the other team to find the picture that matches their description.
  • During this phase of the activity, circulate about the room both as a referee, and facilitating and encouraging active vocabulary building through descriptive language use.

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