Japanese Version

Genki English Newsletter January 2007

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1. "Winter Clothes" cards, games + picture book
2. Snowball Fight
3. New Years' Ideas
4. Kids Price
5. And finally...


Welcome to 2007 and what an exciting year it's going to be! Here we go....

1. "Winter Clothes" cards, games + picture book

As you may have found, "clothes" can be a tough theme to teach for a number of reasons. One being that for example "pants" and "vest" have very different meanings in the UK and US. But luckily at this time of year things are a lot simpler with "Winter Clothes" e.g. hat, scarf, coat, boots etc.

"Put on your ..." and "Take off your.." are phrases that crop up a lot with winter clothes in school, especially around playtime.
So in the warm up, simply mime putting on and taking off some winter clothes. Then you can try a few games....

Clothes Race Game

Like the Christmas Clothes race have a pile of clothes at the far end of the classroom. Then...

1. You shout out "Put on the ..." + one item of clothing.
2. The first kid in each group has to run and put on the item.
3. The fastest person gets a point for their team.

Or play the Freezing Monkey Game:

1. Draw freezing Baby Monkeys on the board ( see the website for a cute picture). One for each team.
2. Mime putting on a piece of clothing.
3. The quickest team to guess what it is rolls the dice.
4. On their team's Baby Monkey they draw on the item of clothing that corresponds to the number on the dice.
e.g. 1=hat 2=scarf 3=coat 4=boots 5=sweater 6=take one item off.
5. The first team to a have fully clothed baby monkey is the winner.

When the kids have got the hang of it, treat them to the new "Baby Monkey's Clothes" Picture Book or get them into the computer lab for the talking online Winter Clothes Online Game.

Plus you have A4 picture cards and minicards of the words all at:



2. Snowball Fight

This is a great, and chaotic, game sent in by reader Jonathan Shaffer.

1. Give each kid a piece of paper.
2. On the paper they write down one question.
3. They crumple the paper up into a "snowball".
4. Everyone throws their snowballs at each other.
5. When the teacher says "stop" ( or maybe blows a whistle?), everyone stops.
6. They quickly pick up the nearest "snowball", uncrumple it and run around trying to ask the question to as many people as possible.
7. Repeat from step 3.

You can also use it for kids who can't read ( and have small hands ) by using crumpled up minicards. The kids ask each other today's question and they answer with the "snowball" they have. You could try this with almost any theme, e.g. weather, transport etc. etc.

Jonathan has also sent in lots of variations of the idea at:


Thank you very much!

3. New Year's Ideas

If you're in Japan, one January tradition is to play games. The most popular is called "Make a Face" ( or "Fuku warai") which also happens to be great for teaching some very useful English. You basically draw a big circle on the board, then blindfold one kid. Give this kid one face part ( e.g. mouth, nose etc.) and the other kids have to direct them left, right, up, down etc. to get it in the right place. Lots of fun. The teachers will also be really happy that you are teaching some "Japanese culture" in English class.

Of course it works just as well in any country.

To get the English firmly stuck in the kids' heads CD6 has the "Make a Face" song especially for this game and CD1 has the infamous "Left & Right" song for practising directions. Do the songs first ( or even in previous lessons ) and the lesson should go really smoothly. There are face parts picture cards on the site at:


Plus one other request was for a 2007 Genki English Calendar. It's now up on the site and makes a great wall decoration.


4. Kids Price - 62,790 Yen

If you're been on the site recently you may have noticed that we now publish the new price of the "Kids English" CDs, Picture Books ( hardback) & videos set. It normally retails at nearly $4,000. Yes, that's right, nearly four thousand dollars. But.. we have a limited amount of sets where the videos are on VHS. Hence the price now works out at only 62,790 yen. It's a huge set and most of the themes work great in elementary school. If you have video decks in the classroom it's an excellent bargain. Plus if you ask your school they will probably pay.

Find out more at:


5. And finally ...

These few games should get you through the Winter months ( or enjoy the beaches for those of you teaching in the southern hemisphere).

There's also a new "For students" link on the top of the main page. Tell your students about Genki English and they'll be able to get to the cool stuff for them without having to wade through all the stuff for teachers.

I'm currently in Europe recording some more songs and materials so keep checking back for lots more on the site soon.

This year's Germany workshop will be in Cologne on the 20th of January. It's 3 hours in the afternoon and if you're in the area, get in touch and please come along!

Be genki,


Richard J. Graham
The Genki way to Teach.
Primary School English Games, Songs and Activities

" One kind word can warm three winter months
Japanese saying

And if you like the ideas in this newsletter, please feel free to pass it along to your friends!

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