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Thank you for the Terrible Dinner

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Submitted by:
Michael Baldwin
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Submitted on: 05/20/2006 21:04:53 

Topic: Role Play
Level: Intermediate, Advanced,
Age: Teens, Adults,
Skill: Writing,
The class invents a dinner party they went to where everything went wrong. Then they have to write thank-you letters to the host. A great variation on letter-writing, and can get very creative! Works great after reviewing how to write a letter.
15 min to 1 hr
Board, markers, paper, pens
1. Tell the class they had a dinner party last night, all together. Ask them where they were? They'll probably suggest one of their own.

2. Ask them what happened. They ate? What did they eat? "Chicken." OK...was something wrong with it? Elicit "Yes." What? "It was raw." Write down on the board:


3. Elicit a few more things, and what went wrong:


4. Now, because the students all had such a NICE time, what should they do? Elicit...write *thank-you* letters! Ask them what kinds of things they might write, and elicit a model phrase, like:

"Thank you for the lovely meal. It was quite tasty, even though the chicken was raw and I was sick all night long."

5. Have them write thank-you letters. Tell them they can use the ideas of what went wrong that the class came up with, or invent their own. You can assign this as homework, or have them do it on the spot (budget half an hour).

6. (Optional) Once you've corrected the letters afterwards, or during the writing process, have the class read their letters out loud. This works particularly well if they're reading them 'to' their host they picked at the beginning. Then have that student pretend to be the identical twin of the 'real' host when he reads his, to make it all work...

THIS ACTIVITY is originally from the collection at Laughing English -- a website dedicated to activities that bring laughter to the classroom. See more at
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