I use this activity as a warm-up when talking about the present perfect and using “for” and “since.” This works well as a follow up review activity for lower level classes or a refresher for those who are more advanced.
Briefly explain why we use both “for” and “since” in the present perfect.
For: a period of time in the past (5 days, 6 minutes, 20 years etc)
Since: a point in time in the past (2004, yesterday, last week, February etc)
Once they have a decent understanding of the rule write FOR and SINCE on the board. Above the word “FOR” write “STAND” and above “SINCE” write “SIT.” Explain to them that you will call out either a period of time or a point in time and depending on what they hear they must either sit down or stand up. Go through a few practice rounds with them.
What you do from here is up to the specific class itself. If I have a lot of confident students who are good friends with each other I turn it into a race and the last person to stand or sit has to create a sentence using the period or point in time I gave.
I don’t do it this way if the class is mixed level because I don’t want to single out any one student who may not understand so I let them know that the first half of the class to sit or stand correctly is safe but anyone else could be called upon to make a sentence. That way I can control a little better who has to speak.
It’s fun to trick the students by sitting and standing with them for the first few and then doing the opposite of what they expect when I call out the period or point in time.
This activity is a lot of fun and is great as a warm up or closer activity to get the students moving around!