Current Events Trivia
for the ESL Classroom
When it comes to language learning, my main philosophy is that language is meant for communication above all else. Not to take an exam, not to demand perfect grammar at all times and definitely not to practice the present simple vs. the present continuous every single year forever and ever, amen.
We learn languages to communicate and connect.
Which is why I always try to keep my lessons relevant, interesting and tailored to the students of any particular group.
My specialty is secondary school and to get them warmed up, I start off every lesson with small talk about what they did over the weekend, what exams and projects they´re doing in their other classes, if they’ve seen X sports match, Y new flick in the cinema or Z on the nightly news. It keeps the classroom atmosphere relaxed and communicative, shows them the value of communication in their second language and inspires them to search for vocabulary they don’t typically use at school.
I´m currently blessed with a bunch of teens who take an active interest in world news and happenings, so I’ve decided to do a roundup of current events trivia every couple of months to test their memories and encourage discussions about what’s going on this big blue dot of ours.
Each month will be a little bit different to keep students engaged and keep them from getting bored. Some months I´ll provide the questions, sometimes I´ll provide only images so they must formulate the questions, and sometimes I´ll provide news magazines and they´ll have to search for interesting current events and create their own questions.
I use current events from all over the world, but as I teach high school and secondary students in Spain, I always use local current events in addition to the biggies in the USA. I find this keeps them interested and keeps the task relevant. If you´re teaching in another country, I highly recommend you add questions relevant to your students´ community, culture and interests.
Thanks for reading and as always, comments are very much appreciated! These slides take time and effort and I´m not (yet!!) making money off this little baby blog, so I´d love to hear what you think and if your students have enjoyed the activity 😊.
2019 Current Events Trivia
Recommended age: 15 years and older
Recommended English Level: Intermediate B1 and higher
🦸 What famous villain topped the box office in October?
🌍 Who took the streets in September to fight for mother nature?
🍑 What´s happening with the Mango Mussolini in the White House?
Test your students´knowledge of current events with the Autumn 2019 Current Events trivia edition. This round can be played in two ways:
Easier: Show the students both the image and question at the same time.
More Challenging: To make the game more challenging, I prefer to have my students practice formulating their own questions:
- Each slide will first show an image
- In groups, students must decide what the topic is and what question is being asked based on that image (2 points)
- Another group answers the base question (1 point)
- Once the question is answered, students can ask any additional relevant questions (2 points). There are sometimes additional images to help them make questions, or they can create their own from scratch.
- An image is shown of the wildfires in California
- Student decides the question is ¨What natural disaster is shown in this image?¨ (2 points)
- Another group answers correctly (1 point)
- Any group can ask additional question such as ¨If this is California, what body of water is shown in the image?¨(Pacific Ocean), ¨If this is a fire, what can we see in the sky¨(smoke), ¨What are the people in the cars doing?¨ (evacuating).
- Once students run out of questions, I ask any additional questions relevant to the image or current event such as, ¨What other natural disasters happened last month?¨, ¨Where in the Canary Islands did we have a wildfire last year? (Tejeda, Gran Canaria).
Test your students’ knowledge about all the latest current events – from political to pop and sports to celeb goss.
And while you´re at it, don´t forget to check out these intriguing Autumn lesson plans & activities!
And if you´re planning ahead for the winter months, don´t forget to check out these classroom favourites:
🎄 ESL & EFL Christmas Crafts, Games & Activities (coming soon) 🎄
🐉Chinese New Year in the EFL Classroom (coming soon!)🐉
Love & light and sunny vibes from the Canaries,