This is one of my favorite activities to start a lesson. This is a very simple activity, but everyone will do it and it elicits a lot of surprised reactions from students. It also teaches them to read more carefully (which comes in handy when they do exams – you’ll be surprised how many students breeze through the instructions and answer incorrectly).
Written instructions (photocopies)
1. Read everything before you do anything.
2. Put your name in the upper right-hand corner of this page.
3. Circle the word ‘name’ in the second sentence.
4. Draw five small squares in the upper left-hand corner of this page.
5. Put an ‘x’ in each square mentioned in number 4.
6. Put a circle around each square.
7. Sign your name under the title of this page.
8. After the ‘title’ write “yes, yes, yes.”
9. Put a circle around sentence number 7 and 8.
10. Put an ‘x’ in the top right-hand corner of this page.
11. Draw a triangle around the ‘x’ you have just made.
12. On the back of this page add 70 and 30.
13. Draw a circle around the word ‘page’ in sentence 4.
14. Loudly call out your name when you have reached this point in the test.
15. If you think you have carefully followed directions, call out – “I have carefully followed
16. On the reverse side of this page, add 105 and 95.
17. Put a circle around your answer to problem 16.
18. Count out in your normal speaking voice, from 1 to 10.
19. Punch three small holes in your page here, O O O
20. If you are the first person to get this far, call out loudly, “I am the leader in Following Directions.”
21. Now that you have followed instructions carefully, it is only necessary that that you complete the first three lines of this very important exercise.
22. You now know how good you are at following instructions, don’t you?