Doing surveys can be a useful way of getting your students to interact, produce question forms and collect and analyse real information. This survey has been designed for younger learners and is based on the theme of school subjects.
Before the class I speak to a teacher from another group and try to arrange for my class to survey a different class that they don't know. It’s a good idea to choose a group who have a higher level than your own group as this avoids misunderstandings in the survey. I tell the teacher that we are going to do a survey on school subjects and arrange a time to go into his/her class.
I tell my own class we are going to do a class survey on another group. The survey is about school subjects and involves asking a student from another class seven questions and then recording their answers on the survey sheet.
I usually brainstorm school subjects on the blackboard and check spelling and pronunciation at the same time. Once there is a list of subjects on the blackboard I ask the following questions:-
1) What’s your favourite subject?
2) What’s your worst subject?
3) What’s the most important school subject?
It’s a good idea to get the class thinking about school subjects and comparing themselves to others in the class. This activity gives them the chance to practise target language in context and it also prepares them for the survey with students they may not know.
I then do the following things:-
- Give out the School Subject Class Survey worksheet
- Read through the questions and check pronunciation
- Elicit answers from the group and check pronunciation
- Ask the group to prepare themselves for the survey with a pencil and a their coursebook to lean on while they are writing answers
- Go to the other group and carry out the survey
After the survey I collect answers on the board in our own classroom. This is a good way to bring the activity to a close.
- To do this it’s interesting to draw a simple vertical bar graph for the last three questions (favourite school subject, worst subject and most important school subject) on the board and ask the class to put up their hands to show what they found out in the survey. Finally I ask why they think English/maths or Computer Studies is the most important school subject.
Malisa Iturain, Teacher, British Council, Barcelona
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