Well, it’s been the football season (also called soccer), and football enthusiasts from around the globe have spent either the late hours of the evening or the wee hours of the morning glued to the television, excited, frustrated, cheering, and booing. Even those of us who are not complete football addicts, have been more or less bowled over by the precise kicks and passes, thereby pushing us to become more acquainted with football vocabulary. So let’s look at how we can familiarize and enrich the sports vocabulary of our students so that they are more confident and professional when talking about the football game.
The Internet has a wide array of worksheets that deal with football comprehension and football vocabulary. http://www.elcivics.com/worksheets/football-fans.pdf is a simple and elementary read aloud activity that introduces students to the world of football, and more specifically to the world of football fans. This is suitable for primary school students; it can also be used as a comprehension worksheet for students to answer the routine true or false statements and the who, what, when, where, why, and how questions. Students can also use the text as a guide to write a similar essay on cricket or any other sport that they are acquainted with or play.
The following website focuses on more advanced football vocabulary suitable for middle school students: http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/learningenglish/grammar/vocabulary/football.shtml.
Students here learn the precise football terms and also learn football conversational phrases to help bring the game to life. The site also has interesting interactive quizzes to test the students’ football vocabulary knowledge after having waded through the definitions and explanations. The explanations are clear, and the quizzes can be done by students with little or no monitoring.
So how does one tweak the material to convert it into a testing material?
If it is a listening activity that you are looking at, you could read out an extract from the following website: http://worldsoccer.about.com/od/soccer101/a/Soccer101_Refs.htm. Given below is the extract; the words in red are the answers to the task that students will be doing.
Professional soccer games are run by four officials, usually dressed in black or some bright color designed to clash with the jerseys of both teams. Each has a separate but important function during the match and they are all in constant communication with each other in certain leagues thanks to the recent introduction of microphones and earpieces.
The author is a teacher educator and language trainer based in Hyderabad. She can be reached at email@example.com.