Information Gap Activities

Before this week, you have been planning two or three comprehension learning activities for the session you coached each week. Now that you are talking, you will need to plan a talking activity (involving spoken interaction) as well as a listening activity. For the next week, the talking activities should generally be of the “information gap” variety.

Information gap activities:

One group or individual has information needed for the other person or group to do a task. Side without information needs to ask questions , receive instruction, get clarification.

Many of these make use of a barrier: People on either side of the barrier must arrange objects or pictures identically by exchanging information. You can be creative thinking up new activities of this sort.


1.Arranging similar object set on each side of a barrier. Option: Start with a simple
outdoor scene or house interior as an anchor on each side.
2.Drawing /arranging a picture e.g. Mr. Potato Head.
3. Find the difference
4.Go somewhere on a map with specific place in mind
5.Arranging pictures in order
6.Treasure hunt in the room
7.Put together a cut up story strip
8.Sticker kits-available in resource room
9.Duplicate someone’s Family Tree-Do you have an older sister? What’s her name.
10. I Spy
11. Puzzle
12. Who Am I?–find the right face
13. Matching people and actions
14.“20 Questions”-type game

Come up with other ideas.

There are many other possible information gap activities. Be creative. The key is that they force you to exchange meanings, either with your nurturer, or with one another. Communication should be a bit of a struggle, forcing you to “negotiate meanings”.

Your session will then include at least three activities:
1) An information gap activity that uses known words including strengthening ones from the previous few sessions

2)A comprehension (listening and doing) activity such as you have planned in the past—learn 7 or 8 new words

3) . Lexicarry- type activity to learn or refresh power tools or survival phrases OR some phonetic descrimination or structured input

Original Document: SILUND L480 SLA 2011-Info-gap activities

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