For Creative Language Practice
Levels: Middle School, High School to
Intermediate to Advanced Proficiency
In a way, every communicative situation where two or more people are
interacting is a kind of improvisation. There may be a vague script or
patterning to the interaction, but the specifics are constatnly being created on
the spot. Language learners do the same thing when they put their language to
use "out on the street." They do the best they can with what they have.
This collection of improvisations is designed to bridge the gap between the
classroom and the street. Each improvisation is in a two-page format. There are
three principal parts.
Part I Getting Ideas is a warm-up that starts the students
thinking in general about the topic of the improvisation by doing a variety of
exercises - brain-storming, free writing, read-arounds, graphic organizers, and
Part II The Story is a short, spare scene that leaves much to
the imagination. After reading the story, the students answer some questions
that stimulate their imaginations.
Part III The Improvisation. The students work on developing the
characters and then plan out a story line. Finally, they perform their
The Old Monk · The Tribe and the River · A Shepherd
Watches · The Old Couple in the Fall · A Remote Farmhouse · The Artist and His
Models · Country Road · A Storm at Sea · Airport Goodbye · Day Laborers · Poor
Women in a Factory · The Job Interview · Who Done It? · Walking the Dog · Favela
Families · Little Boy in a Well · Street Performers · and 27 more.