Classification, sometimes also known as Categorisation, is another Thinking Skills strategy that I used to use back at the turn of the century.

It works best with students working in pairs or groups.  They need a collection of words or other lexical items, ideally cut up so that they can move them around the table.  They then work collaboratively to sort the words into categories, where each category contains words that have some characteristic in common.  Like with Odd One Out, it obliges students to think beyond just the meaning of the words and to discuss their choices using grammatical terminology.  Different groups of students may have different categories, but it's the explanation and justification of the categories that is the important thing - as with all Thinking Skills strategies there is more than one possible correct answer.

If you were given the words above to classify, how would you do it?  How many categories would you have and what would the category titles be?

The classification can provide a useful starting point for grammar teaching or written work.  The words above, for example, can also be used for teaching adjectival position and agreement.

A variation on this theme is Trash or Treasure, which I have written about before.  The difference here is that you tell the students which category to look for each time.