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Emojis Vocabulary Builder – Condensed Version

The Emoji Mindmap Trend

Last year, I saw Dannielle Warren using the Emoji Mindmap that she had put together from a Google image, which included a massive number of emojis to annotate on to recap and improve vocabulary, the idea for which she got from Miss Meyrick. As soon as I saw this imaginative teaching resource, I felt my students would absolutely love to try it to revise vocabulary. It was an ‘on trend’ vocabulary builder idea which could also be combined with spontaneous writing/speaking skills.

As with many other creative teaching ideas found online, I put the Emoji Mindmap on my to-do-list to help student improve vocabulary and kept meaning to download a copy of the worksheet and get it used in the classroom… I re-visted Dannielle’s original Emoji Mindmap post yesterday and noticed the date stamp of 9th September 2017…!

Unfortunately, this practice of discovering creative teaching ideas, making a mental note to use them, saving them to my phone, emailing myself a link or taking a screen shot doesn’t often materialise into an actual lesson. So, last night, in an attempt to change my ‘bad habits’, I challenged myself to use two of these creative language teaching ideas every single school week. This is the first of many, so watch this space with the feedback and my twist on the activities.

Emoji Mindmaps

Miss D’s Adaptation of The Original Emoji Mindmap

As a vocabulary builder in a recent DIRT lesson, I decided to use Dannielle Warren’s Original with a bottom set of year 10 German students and when I downloaded it yesterday, I noticed that it had over 500 emojis. Whilst I knew they would love the idea, 500 emojis are a lot and using this would have been wasted on my group. I got thinking and considered condensing the emojis by ‘genre’ like on a mobile phone emoji keyboard.

Using some online software, screen shots and cropping tools, I managed to split the emojis up and have developed reduced categories which loosely fit into some of the MFL 9-1 GCSE exam topics!

  • Food and Drink
  • Animals and Nature
  • Free time
  • Transport and Holidays
  • People, Clothes and ‘Smileys’

With my Year 10’s, we have just finished the topic of food and drink, as well as free time so using a combination of these two was perfect for the lesson – you can find a link to the free editable  worksheet below. The titles are in German but you can easily adapt them! 

Emoji Mindmap

How Did I Use The Activity?

To revise vocabulary and practise recent grammar structures using emojis.

Working individually for 10-15 minutes, annotate the sheet in with as many words (1-2 words = 1 point), phrases (3 words = 2 points) and sentences (4+ words = 3 points) as you can to describe the emojis. 
Your work must be accurate but you can write anywhere, just add a little line to the emoji.

a) words must be spelled correctly
b) for phrases and sentences, correct word order must be used

Download the Emojis Vocabulary Builder with a twist and get using!

This vocabulary builder and recap idea is a pretty simple and low prep teaching activity, but the students really loved the relevance of the worksheet. The competitive element was an added bonus for them. I’d love to hear from you if you use this!

Thanks to Dannielle Warren @MorganMFL for the giving me the idea and to Miss Meyrick for the original idea! Follow them both on Twitter too – they both come out with amazing and creative teaching activities.

Need more inspiration? I’ve also written about and created a student friendly handout on How-To-Learn-Vocabulary-Effectively-for-French-German-Spanish.docx  

UPDATE: It’s 17th July and #WorldEmojiDay so I added an extra activity to extend the Emoji Vocabulary Builder, which you can check out here > Emoji Verb Builder

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2 thoughts on “Emojis Vocabulary Builder – Condensed Version

  1. Thanks so much for sharing – I was planning to make similar and you have saved me the effort. I’m sure it’ll go down very well with my classes. Danke!

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