Game of booksellers

An activity to promote communication, persuasion and awareness of social bonds.

Game of Booksellers
Three students come to the blackboard in succession. Each of them writes the book title, its author (and translator, if applicable), publishing house and imprint date. The student in front of the blackboard has 8 minutes to captivate the schoolmates (potential buyers) in order to persuade them into buying the book. IT IS FORBIDDEN TO REVEAL THE CONTENT OF THE BOOK!
The “bookseller” outlines the book’s genre (elements of the individual genres), characterises the environment and era of the book’s story in a simplified form. Then he/she gives details of the main characters and describes their relations, and tries to catch the principal idea of the writing as a message the writer probably wanted to pass to the readers. In the end, the “bookseller” reads an excerpt that could captivate the future customers.
The students evaluate the books offered and choose the book they would like to buy. They try to give reasons why they are interested in that book, and will select the best bookseller (specifying 3 reasons for that).

How this resource relates to Shaping Characters objectives

  • Attitudes and attributes
  • Education techniques
  • Motivation and resilience

Actual outcomes

Development of oral communication skills as preparation of composition training for a book review; creating social bonds; training assertiveness

Qualities in focus:

Book evaluation skills, objectivity

Resources required

Books the students have read

Time needed

45 minutes

What could have been done differently or is planned for future repeats?

This proven activity teaches the children to listen to the others and develops their ability to argue. First the students watched a film clip showing a real bookseller offering a book using the above activities. The students therefore had a chance to adopt what they saw fit from the bookseller’s discourse. I think some copied the bookseller from the clip to a certain extent, it served the purpose well. The students never came across such an activity.
Shy at the beginning, the children soon got to grips with the role. Even though their priority was “selling the book”, they also gave expert reviews of the literary work, skilfully promoted their views and succeeded in recommending the book to the readership.

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