Are you bigger than an Xbox?: ‘20 Questions’ used in a class delivered via video conferencing



  • Author: DM Jones
  • Peer-reviewed:
  • Peer-reviewers: Evan Bostelmann, Jonathan deHaan, Niall McFadyen, Frederick Poole.
  • Date of publication: 2020/06/07
  • Keywords: Collaboration, COVID-19, Creative writing, Critical thinking, GBLT, Keep It Super Simple, Parlor games, Peer editing, Practice reflection, Video conferencing
  • Cite: Jones, D.M. (2020). Are you bigger than an Xbox?: ‘20 Questions’ used in a class delivered via video conferencing. Ludic Language Pedagogy, 2, 95-103.

Tweet Synopsis

Using ‘20 Questions’ in your lessons delivered via video conferencing can be a fun and effective way of supporting student spelling, writing, grammar awareness, collaboration, creative writing, and critical thinking. It may also help you to reflect on your own GBLT practice.

Key points

  • What is this? This is a short description of how I have recently started using ‘20 Questions’, a classic parlor game, in my lessons delivered through video conferencing. It is also a brief exploration of my own Game-based Language Teaching (GBLT) practice stemming from this experience.
  • Why did you make it? As a result of the COVID-19 social distancing measures, my class has been moved online. This is an example of how I have adapted my activities and teaching to fit the new context and constraints. It is also an example of GBLT using a simple game. As the questions that this experience raised were not so simple, I also made this piece to help me reflect on and explore my own GBLT practice.
  • Who is it for? This is for teachers using video conferencing in their classes, especially with lower to lower-intermediate level students. This activity can be used as a simple warm up, a main class activity, and expanded to include collaboration, peer editing, creative writing, projects, and critical thinking activities (the expanded activities are highly recommended). The GBLT reflective practice questions are for all GBLT teachers, but especially me! They may help me/us avoid and escape GBLT-pitfalls.

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