He Said She Said

The He Said She Said ESL activity is a variation on I Went To The Shop for practising reported speech.

Students for He Said She Said ESL Activity:4+Time for He Said She Said ESL Activity:5-10 mins
Resources for He Said She Said ESL Activity:

Arrange your students in a circle. Or, if they are in rows, define an order of speaking.

With larger groups (over ten students), you may want to divide the class into multiple groups.

  1. The first student says a sentence (e.g. I went to the beach).
  2. The following student repeats that sentence using the appropriate reported speech grammar (e.g. Natalia said she had gone to the beach). They then add a new sentence of their own.
  3. Subsequent students have to remember and report the sentences of all students before them (using the appropriate grammar), and add a new sentence each time.
  4. Depending on your group, you could set challenges for the longest chain, or ask students to do a forfeit if they can’t remember. If a student can’t remember a sentence, you could also try getting the other students to act a clue, instead of just telling them.

Tip: If you want to make the exercise more active, try throwing a ball within a circle to choose the next student in the chain.

Target Language

The He Said She Said ESL activity is great for practising reported speech with almost any type of grammar. For example, the students could add sentences about their past actions or experiences, hobbies, abilities, future plans etc.

With intermediate groups new to reported speech you may want to limit the grammar to one tense at a time. However, more advanced groups should be comfortable mixing different types of sentences and the reported speech structure required.

For the original activity without reported speech, see I Went To The Shop.

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