TEFL Speaking Activity And Warmer: Who Am I?


Who Am I?

“Who am I?” is a fun speaking activity and warmer, provided you put some thought into it and your students are prepared to use their respective imaginations.

It’s not a new concept: write the name of a famous person, living or dead, on a Post-It note and stick one on the back of each person. They have to ask each other questions to find out who they are.

These are a couple of tips I’ve used to make it work well:

Tip 1: Think carefully about which famous names you select. It’s important your students know who these people are because they can’t guess or answer questions if they don’t. Also use a bit of sensitivity. If I were the only American, I would want neither “George Bush” or “Osama Bin Laden” on my back. My Romanian colleague didn’t much care for being Ceausescu. I sometimes include “Katie (your teacher)” as one, or (another?) local celebrity – but do make sure you have a sense of how the person is received.

Tip 2: Give your students ideas for questions. These should probably be yes or no questions but can be “Am I famous for science? For art? For sport?”

Tip 3: Give rules or guidelines so they don’t stand in the same pairs the whole time. They can ask a maximum of four questions to one person, they get one minute with each partner, etc.

If you think ahead well and select famous people who can reasonably be construed as “going together” you can get students to pair up once they know who they are. It has to work for the group – everyone has to have a reasonable pair, but they can come up with their own reasons (Marilyn Monroe and JFK or JFK and Bill Clinton).