Using Rhubarb from TexToys
I got this activity from a colleague who used one of the text reconstruction exercises I made using the Rhubarb exercise generator from TexToys. You can find exercises I make with on virtually all of the 3,000+ lessons I have online. The example used below is here.
The activity lets students practise listening and spelling. It also encourages students to ask for and give clarification for words they don’t know the spelling of.
Here it is.
This is the empty exercise. The students have to reconstruct the whole text.
Student A dictates short phrases to student B, who types in the words one at a time. After each word, he/she must press “Check” to see if they have entered the correct word and/or spelling. If it is correct, all instances in the text of that word will be displayed. If it is typed incorrectly, the word will join a list of incorrect words below the running score.
If students are unsure of what letter is next, they can press the Hint button. They will lose points but not as many as a wrong guess.
You can see below what the text looks like after a dozen or so words.
An alternative to straightforward dictation is to tell students they can break from dictating at any time to try to guess the rest of the words in the text. This gets them guessing words in context, experimenting with ideas about which word comes next in a collocated pair or what the preposition is in a phrasal verb, etc.
Students could also swap roles for the second paragraph, although a fair part of the text might be revealed by then.
It’s a fun activity that my students really enjoyed.
Of course, the activity can also be used by students working alone, simply as a text reconstruction.
Let me know what your students think.