This is a brainstorming task that can be used before a writing or speaking stage to help students gather and organise ideas. The title of the piece that students are going to write is:
What I've learnt from football
This topic can be adapted to suit your learners' interests.
This topic will be developed in Writing: Organising ideas.
1. Empty your brain!
Tell your students the title of the piece that they will write. Tell them to put their pens and pencils down and to focus on thinking. Tell them to think about the topic for two minutes. Tell them not to write anything but think of as many ideas as they can. Reassure them - tell them not to worry about whether they will use these ideas or not later.
2. Put it on paper!
Tell your students to write down their ideas. At this point, there are no bad ideas, anything goes! Tell them to work silently - not to discuss their ideas with their partners. Tell them they have five minutes (and tell them how long they have left at regular intervals). Tell them to try to continue writing until the five minute time limit is up, but stop writing immediately when five minutes have passed.
3. Order from chaos!
Tell your students to look at their ideas and number them in order of importance or interest: 1 means the most important idea. Select the 4 most important ideas.
4. Compare the results.
At this point, tell your students to compare their ideas. If the ideas are different, you can ask them to try to explain how they came up with them.