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The EFL Playhouse: A Resource for ESL/EFL Teachers of Young Learners

Red Light! Yellow Light! Green Light!

Skills: Comprehending "stop," "go," and "be careful"; associating correct actions with traffic signals; listening comprehension
Group Size: 4 to 24
Prep Time: >5 minutes
Playing Time: 5-15 minutes
Interest Level: ages 3 to 10
Ability Level: beginning

Language used: go; stop; be careful;

Preparation: Cut a red, a yellow, and a green circle out of heavy paper. Laminate if possible.

Game: Choose one student to be the traffic light and another to be the traffic cop (or highway patrolman). All other students are cars.The traffic light holds up a circle and calls out "Stop!", "Be careful!", or "Go!" depending on the color of the circle he or she chooses. The traffic cop must watch the light and the cars. When the light is green and the traffic light has called, "Go!" students may run around freely. On yellow, students may move, but anyone whom the cop tags is out. When the light turns red, everyone must freeze. If the cop detects any movement on red, the player is out.

After students have become familiar with the oral commands, the traffic light may discard the colored circles and simply call words. Students must then listen carefully to ensure that they are following directions. 

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