I call non-limiting activities those which promote creativity, imagination, critical thinking, and give the students a voice. I feel that as teachers, we are conditioned to base all follow-up activities to a reading, a story or a video on comprehension questions and vocabulary which turn out to be more often than not memory tests. (Watch Mario Rinvolucri’s fantastic talk at SOAS https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8rDu5w4UFmA). Instead of asking the students what the woman used to make the Gingerbreadman’s eyes, or what the man was wearing, I suggest the activities below. In most of these follow-up activities, you can assess how much of the story your students have understood, while the students have an opportunity to be heard and don’t feel they are being tested with each question or activity.
These ideas were written for primary teachers, but can easily be adapted for all ages and type of stories. For very young children, which have a limited knowledge of English, discussions, for example, could be done with the children talking in L1 and the teacher speaking English. Again, it is another way of assessing how much of the story they have understood without them feeling they are being tested.
The ideas were also written for orally told stories but can be adapted for readings in a textbook, novels which are part of the curriculum, videos, listening exercises, etc.
For the non-limiting activities and ideas, click here