'Teaching reading' is a subject at the very heart of learning. What steps can we take to make students more confident readers? And how can we find a variety of materials - or 'texts' - for our students to read?
Load the Dinosaur dig story. Ss help to make the pre-story puzzle. Ss tell you where the picture comes from (a computer game) and how they know (“3 lives left”).
Play the story. Ss complete as much as they can of part 1 of the activity sheet. Play the story again to help Ss finish. Give the Ss the text of the story to check their answers.
Ss write about their favourite computer game on part 3 of the activity sheet.
Ss design their own computer game. They should decide: the name, the characters, what you have to find in the game, what you mustn’t do, what you have to watch out for, how many lives you have got, etc. Ss can design the front and back cover of the game box, or an advertising poster for it.
Ss re-write the story, based on their own game, with themselves as the characters. Low levels can copy the original story, just changing details, high levels can be more creative.
Ss review some dinosaur vocabulary with this labelling game or through mime. Afterwards you can feed in some more vocabulary from the following activity.
Ss do some dinosaur research. Put up information about different dinosaurs around the room, separated by category not dinosaur: i.e. don’t put all the T-Rex information in one place, put the diet information of all the dinosaurs in one place, the size information in another place, etc. You can find much of the information on the flashcards. Give Ss this report to complete in pairs (tell them what dinosaur they’re going to research). Ss go round the room and find out the information. Once the reports have been completed, display the reports either around the room or on a large map of the world where each dinosaur lived. Then give the Ss the dinosaur facts worksheet, and they read each others’ reports in order to complete/check their answers. Or, Ss can give a mini-presentation on their dinosaur, acting out how their dinosaur walked/behaved etc.
Ss complete the weather map worksheet. If the language is too difficult, it could be simplified to a map of the UK describing the weather in different cities. Then provide Ss with a map of their own country. They draw their own weather map, with different weather in different cities or regions.
Either: play a memory game – Ss in pairs swap weather maps, and test each other: “What’s the weather like in Paris/the north-east?” Or: do a drawing dictation – give Ss a blank copy of the map, and in pairs they ask and dictate to each other the weather from their own map to draw. While demonstrating either of these activities, be sure to drill the question form.
TV weather forecast project! Ss work in groups of 3 or 4. Find simple maps showing 10-15 major cities of any countries, one country per group, on A3 paper. Ss then decide what the weather’s like in each city and make weather symbols on card for those cities, which can be attached using Blu-tack or similar. While still in their groups, help Ss plan and rehearse their weather forecast presentation. Depending on the Ss, you might like to demonstrate with a map and presentation of your own before getting the Ss to start the project. When the groups are ready, introduce each group as if the news has just finished, and each group presents the weather for that country, sticking on the weather symbols as they go. This might be a nice project to film.
Finally, Ss can re-imagine the story. Either individually or in pairs, they imagine where they would go if they found a magic carpet. This would be great story-boarded, Ss draw a picture and write a caption for each place they go, and where they start and finish. The original story text could be used to help Ss write captions. Then the stories could be displayed for the other Ss to read, or some pairs might like to act their stories out.
Submitted by Sally Trowbridge on 15 May, 2012 - 12:26
For many people, the idea of walking into a room full of strangers and trying to socialise with them can be terrifying, especially if you have to use a foreign language. The barriers to ‘breaking the ice’ in a situation like this are just as much psychological as linguistic, which is why this lesson aims to get students thinking about the situation (through a quiz-based discussion and jigsaw reading) as much as speaking and practicing the skill of starting conversations with strangers.
Submitted by Sally Trowbridge on 14 May, 2012 - 10:31
The key to successful negotiation is preparation and research. This means finding out exactly what you want from the negotiation, and why you want it. This lesson includes a discussion, vocabulary input, a reading activity, useful language for negotiation, team problem solving and a role play in pairs.
Submitted by Sally Trowbridge on 13 May, 2012 - 12:33
Since its development in the 1950s, brainstorming has become one of the most common techniques used in meetings to generate ideas. However, despite its clear benefits, the technique has its faults and many improvements have been suggested and analysed. This lesson aims to provide practice of brainstorming at the same time as exploring possible improvements. The second half of the lesson focuses on the necessary follow-up to brainstorming: evaluating ideas. This means the lesson covers two of the key language functions of meetings: making suggestions and agreeing/disagreeing.
Submitted by Sally Trowbridge on 13 May, 2012 - 11:00
In a negotiation, it’s very important to know when to speak, when to ask and when to shut up and listen. In this lesson students rank and discuss the stages of negotiation, do a reading activity and look at negotiations vocabulary, examine question types, then finish with a role play to practise clarifying, summarising and responding.
Submitted by Sally Trowbridge on 12 May, 2012 - 13:10
Why is it that when you go to a conference or business gathering, everyone else seems to know each other already? At least part of the answer to the puzzle seems to be social networking: getting to know business contacts online first, so that by the time you meet face to face for the first time, you already have plenty to talk about. For many people, social networking is seen as something to do instead of work. This lesson emphasises that social networking is real work. The lesson introduces useful language and techniques, building up to a large social networking simulation at the end.