TeachingEnglish

Drawing and colouring in the primary classroom

Introduction
Art is an important part of the young learners’ development at school and can also be part of their English learning. Colouring shouldn’t and needn’t however become simply a means to fill in time. Here we look at different ways to use colouring and drawing and to practise English at the same time.

Aims

  • To make colouring an integral part of an English lesson and not simply a time filler
  • To learn about mixing colours
  • To recognize colours by words, pictures and sounds
  • To reproduce colours
  • To practise asking and answering simple questions

 

Materials

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TeachingEnglish

Creepy Crawlies

This can be done over a series of lessons as part of an ongoing project, dedicating each lesson to a different insect, or otherwise as one lesson. Children love squeamish subjects so you may find that they want you to extend what you originally planned to do.

You’ll find that insects are a great basis for teaching several language areas such as colours, numbers, food and body parts. Below I take insect by insect and give suggestions of activities you can develop around each one.

1. The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle (see also other insect-related books by Eric Carle)

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TeachingEnglish

My favourite day 1

This is the first in a two part series. Here you have a few ideas on how to review days of the week, months of the year and dates while allowing children to personalise the lesson and allowing you to give them some invaluable cultural input.

The second will focus on special days and birthdays in particular.

Age: 8-10

Aims

  • Review days of the week
  • Introduce/review  numbers  1-31
  • Introduce a traditional rhyme
  • Write group poem
  • Language: My favourite _____ is…
  • Yes/No, it’s…


Materials

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TeachingEnglish

Kings and Queens

Introduction
This is a topic which can be spread over a few lessons and one which covers several language areas including food, clothes, biographies, family trees and parties. It’s steeped in British culture as the Royal Family is an integral part of our identity and image abroad. The majority of the activities are linked through a fictitious King or Queen invented by the children themselves in pairs or small groups depending on the size of your class.

Age:

  • 10 and above


Materials:

  • Photos of members of the British Royal Family
  • Card and pens for posters
  • Access to computers with your class


The British Monarchy
Before you begin you can ask the class to brainstorm any words they already know to do with the British Monarchy. Stick on the board pictures of the Queen and other members of the Royal family that you can get hold of as stimuli.

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TeachingEnglish

Colours: What is pink ?

Introduction
This is a primary tip that helps you exploit the lesson plan Colours – What is pink? from the French CIEP* website, designed to assist foreign assistants teaching in France. It can be used by all assistants as the worksheets are in English. The lesson plan is inspired by the famous poem by Christina Rossetti ‘What is pink?’

Aims:

  • Using poetry as a means to teach English
  • Using English as a means to appreciate poetry at primary level
  • Providing a model for children to create their own poems in English
  • Expanding general vocabulary

 

Material:

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TeachingEnglish

Drama with children 2

Introduction
Following on from Drama with children1 here are a few suggestions that will help you integrate drama into your classroom. Many of the activities are non-verbal but can be adapted at a later stage.

Aims:

  • To put the learners at ease.
  • To generate ideas and encourage imagination
  • To introduce adjectives to describe characters 

Ages:

  • 5 upwards 

Materials:

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TeachingEnglish

Drama with children 1

Introduction
For young children and adults alike it can be intimidating to speak a foreign language in front of other people. Even five-year-olds can be scared of making mistakes and looking silly or it may just be that they are shy and don’t want to talk in class.

One way of reaching these children is through drama. By giving roles to your pupils they can ‘hide’ behind the character and lose some of their inhibitions. Before actually performing though there are several processes you can go through with the children to create a theatrical environment.

Here are a few suggestions on using a range of drama related activities and creating supporting tools like masks and theatres that will help you play with the language with your pupils and have lots of fun at the same time.

Aims:

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TeachingEnglish

Toys

Introduction
The following ideas are ideal for a post-Christmas show and tell style sessions but can be equally adapted throughout the year. You will need to spend a couple of lessons on toys to introduce ‘favourite’ and for children to bring their toys in for the lesson after to talk about them.

Aims

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TeachingEnglish

Six Blind Men And The Elephant

Introduction:
This story is an adaptation of the famous poem by American poet John Godfrey Saxe (1816 - 1887) The Blind Men and the Elephant.

Six blind men meet an elephant for the first time and each man touches a different part of the elephant and makes predictions about what the elephant is like. (See the story)

The sequence and activities suggested below could be spread over two or three lessons depending on the amount of detail you wish to go into to. Aim to finish the before storytelling activities and possibly the first telling of the story in lesson one. Begin and end each subsequent lesson with a retelling of the story.

Aims:

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TeachingEnglish

English Clubs and Corners

Introduction
If you can use part of a classroom as your own or if you always use the same classroom, then find out about the possibility of displaying your pupils’ work on the wall. Not only does it give them huge satisfaction to see their poem, picture or poster on the wall it also provides a fun and interesting place to work in.

Your school will probably want to make the most of your presence. Being a native speaker you can bring a lot to the children. They may ask you to participate in an English Club or indeed you may want to develop some sort of club of your own. Using your initiative with both classrooms and clubs will be both a rewarding and stimulating bonus to the actual teaching you’re doing. Here are some ideas to get you started.

Aims

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