Nowadays the importance of the first conversation at the lesson has greatly risen. It is called warm-up activity. It helps to engage students into the process of communication. The main aim of it is to create favorable atmosphere for communication according to humanistic approach. It was often used only for training pronunciation or vocabulary. Such activity can also be organized to drill student’s intellectual abilities to develop their imagination in context of learner centered approach.

When I enter the classroom with my friend Reddy (a funny puppet clown from Great Britain who doesn’t know Russian, it is put on my right hand) I greet students and then he is our close friend. He is happy, joyful and my students like him very much. He talks to children on different topics. It depends on weather, students’ mood, program, conditions of teaching. Drama technique is the important part of the arsenal of communicative and discovering learning.

When we learn the topic family in the 3rd form I use the following situation: Reddy comes to visit us. He misses the children because he has known them since they were in the second form. Reddy: (cheerfully) ‘’Hello boys and girls! I’m very glad to see you. I haven’t seen you for ages. I’m on a tour in Russia. How are you? (He asks some students, they answer and ask him how he is.) I’d like to talk to you about your families. I’m sure you love your family and you like to do something together. What do you like to do with your family, mother, father, brother or sister?” He asks the children. They answer: "I like to play football with my father. I like to play tennis with my mother”. They speak about different kinds of activities. Reddy: "I think you are friendly with your families. Good bye. See you soon.” The students are joyful, concentrated and ready for learning and it’s useful for the following activities.

The role play is used in the 2nd form. The students are the actors of the travelling puppet theatre. The actors are different animals. They are going to have a performance. The teacher begins: ‘’Today we are having a performance. (Some noise is heard under the table.) What strange noise! Is anybody there? Wow! Reddy is getting out of the table.

Reddy: "Hello! Where am I? I’m lost”. (The teacher interprets when it is necessary)

Teacher: "You are in our travelling puppet theatre. Children! Let’s ask him who he is, what his name is.”

Children: "What is your name? Who are you?

Reddy: "My name is Reddy. I’m a puppet clown.

Children: "Nice to meet you”

Reddy: "I’d like to ask you some questions too. What is your name? Who are you? (He addresses some students and they answer his questions with great pleasure.)

Teacher: "Nice to meet you, Reddy. We invite you to our performance. Let’s show what we can do. Who can count?”  Such activity helps to involve all the students to take part in the performance. They are happy to show  their skills. At the end of the performance Reddy: "I’m so pleased with you. You are so little and your English is so well. Good bye. Good luck to you!”

So Reddy travels with my students from lesson to lesson, from form to form.

Another kind of warm-up activity is the usage of such "fascinating signal” as singing. It helps to concentrate the students, to create joyful atmosphere. I use different songs and try to perform myself as well as I can. It helps me to cope well with my students.

In the 5th form I begin one of the lessons with the song "Only love is spoken here” (it is from the musical of the same name)

Teacher: "Children. I’d like to begin our lesson with a beautiful song "Only love is spoken here” What do you think what it is about? (They try to answer the question, using patterns which are given on their cards. Teacher comments their opinions). Please, listen to the song and then we shall talk about it. (The text of the song is on each student’s desk. The unknown words are translated)

Teacher sings:

1. Only love is spoken here,

Only hope and joy and cheer,

Only love is spoken here, love is spoken here

2. Only love is spoken here.

There’s no doubt nor hate nor fear,

Only love is spoken, love is spoken here!

3. Treating others like they are your brothers

Is the only way to live.

Always caring, yes, and always sharing, yes,

The secret is to give.

4. Only love is spoken here,

Only hope and joy and cheer,

Only love is spoken, love is spoken here!

All the children are listening attentively. Their faces express interest and admiration and it is very important. I see that the song has realized its role. Teacher: "You are smiling. I think you like the song. Why? What do you think?”

Students answer the question, using the patterns given on their cards. Their possible answers: because it’s wonderful, nice and etc. They express their feelings. They don’t think if their English is correct or not. They try to speak and they are prepared to it by the song itself.

Teacher: "I think we’ll learn it by heart” Then the teacher goes over to the following part of the lesson because the children are to discover new things.

With the students of older age we discuss the content of the song. All the students try to express their opinion to the thoughts expressed in the song. They also share their opinions about love, charity, the idea of giving. They try to answer the question what "love” means. They learn not only to speak English but also to think, to discuss. The song helps to involve students into conversation. The teacher can use the song to solve problems of education. We discuss the song in the context of instilling tolerance to people around us not only close people but also classmates and nature.

Speaking about "Thanksgiving day” we use the song "Thank you for saying thank you”. The teacher first gives the students an opportunity to predict what the song tells about. Then they discuss if it is important to say thank you and why, what forgetting saying thank you means. Then we go over to the American tradition.

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