Do you have ESP?

Students test their classmates' powers of perception by drawing hidden shapes.

I start off my writing the letters "ESP" on the board and asking the students if they know what it means. Students might be familiar with the word "ESPer," but just to clarify, I say the Japanese word: "超感覚的知覚" or "ちょうかんかくてきちかく". It's a mouthful!

Then I say that I'm going to test the JTE to see if they have ESP. I draw three shapes on the board and ask the students if they know what they are: a circle, a triangle, and a square. Then I write what I'll be saying on the blackboard:

  • I am drawing a __________________.
  • Yes, you are.
  • No, you aren't.

I draw the shapes on the blackboard while saying the phrase to illustrate what they mean. As I'm writing a circle, for example, I say "I am drawing a circle." I make sure the students understand the verb "draw" and the meaning of the phrase.

Next, I take a piece of posterboard or something else large and block off part of the blackboard so the JTE can't see it. Then I draw a shape, hidden from the JTE, and say something like "I am drawing a triangle." Maybe it's true, maybe it isn't. The JTE has to guess whether I'm lying or not by saying "Yes, you are." or "No, you aren't." Once they've said their answer, I take away the posterboard and show everyone if that was the right answer or not. I do this about 5 or 6 times to see how many times the JTE was correct. If they were correct most of the time, that means they might have ESP! If you can ham it up for the demonstration and build a lot of tension as to whether the JTE will answer correctly or not, it will help the students understand the game and have more fun with it.

Now that the students have the idea of the game, I pass out the papers. They should get into pairs, hide their papers from each other, and draw a shape in the box while saying "I am drawing a ______." Students circle either "Correct" or "Sorry..." depending on if their partner was right or not. In the end, they total up the correct answers to see if their partner has ESP powers. I usually have the students play round 1 (the first page) with the student next to them, and round 2 (the back) with students behind or in front of them.

Once everyone's about finished, you can ask the students if anyone had a high score (above 5 or 6, I'd say). If anyone has a really high score, they may have ESP! Maybe you should ask them for lottery numbers!

You can play this game with a variety of grammar points by altering the main sentence. For example:

  • "I drew a ____________."
  • "I have just drawn a ______________."
  • "I will draw a _____________."


I have just drawn a circle.docx

Total 0

Estimated time: 20-30 minutes

Submitted by: Jake W

January 22, 2019


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