My husband has an evening routine of watching “Pardon the Interruption” after dinner. I don’t love sports talk shows, but this one keeps my interest. Read on to see how I have adapted their “What’s the Word?” into a speaking/writing activity for class (which will earn some street cred with the sporty students).

Here’s a decent clip of how the word game works on PTI:

The gist of the game is that Tony and Michael have a news story from the world of sports. They are given an opinion sentence/phrase that is missing one word. Normally they are looking for an adjectives, or sometimes nouns, to complete the sentence. Next they defend their choice. In this video, they even make up a few words. Very creative!

In the classroom, this is a great way to follow up a video, news story, cultural video/photo or article that could have different opinions or that is somewhat controversial. Show the authentic resource, give them a sentence in target language with a blank, and let them pick how they would complete it and defend it. I noticed that most of the PTI sentences used simple verbs (is, was, feels, and seems). They can write their word on a dry-erase board before they defend it (at their proficiency level) with a partner or in a group. Then favorite ones could be shared with the class. I would limit it to one to three questions like this. Also this could be a station activity (maybe a picture is on a big piece of paper where they all could add their word). Eventually they can write the sentences and share with the class.

Here are a few examples (in English so all readers can understand):

WordTemplate.001 WordTemplate.002 WordTemplate.003 WordTemplate.004 WordTemplate.005 WordTemplate.006 WordTemplate.007 WordTemplate.008

It would also be a great way to compare how they view things before and after a lesson. You can show them a photo and sentence at the beginning of class, and then teach the lesson where they get to explore the unique perspectives behind the practices and products. How much would their initial responses change?? Hmm…

And for a little fun… Google even has the Tomatina bug! 🙂


Click image to read more about the doodle/GIF.

Download the examples I made to use as a template (Keynote only): WhatstheWord.key

Featured image from by Nedim Chaabene, 2014 (Creative Commons)