Picture Description

Simple lesson and activity to use for students who having difficulty speaking and constructing sentences.  I find that this is a good warm up activity related to the lesson topic.

  1. First present a picture.
  2. Then have students identify words they know in the picture and record those as notes.
  3. Determine if any action words can be extracted from picture.
  4. Let students transform words into sentences. Help as needed.
  5. Explain review incorrect words and sentences.

Lesson: 100-Year-Old Breaks Athletic Records

I created and taught this lesson in a 1:1 online synchronous environment for 6, 7, and 8th grade students who are second language learners. The lesson has two parts each consisting of 50 minutes.  Feel free to tweak to suit your learning environment. If you find that the lesson did not go as planned, please contact me so that I can assist with troubleshooting. Download 100 Year Old Man Breaks Records.  Check current articles at http://www.phonetimes.co.kr/.

Objective: Read, make notes, summarize, identify theme, connect theme with personal story.

  • Preview the story: talk about Olympics, show pictures of track and field events.
  • Analyze word: students choose word from text; review explain how to do; give 10 minutes independent time; return and present word.  Teacher can also participate and demonstrate/present word.
  • Shadow read, reflect on sentence(s), decide on most important words, ideas, and make notes. Demonstrate to students.  Continue read, reflect, get students to input key words, ideas to note, assist where necessary. While reading assess particular words that may be new; explain and spend time as necessary.
  • Summarize in sections using information from notes to practice speaking and review. Demonstrate for students.
  • Continue to read, reflect, make notes, check for words and understanding.
    Summarize story again. May need to simply the number of verbs for lower levels.
  • Explain theme: review notes, reflect, and identify theme. Help as needed; show how expand on the theme. Have students provide a personal story connected to the theme; demonstrate for students. End of part 1

Part 2

  • Review first section story through summary.
  • Preview second paragraph; choose and analyze new word; in addition, have students review previous word and add new information to the word (new step I’ve added to the word analysis exercise to review and further build knowledge on existing word).
  • Shadow read second paragraph in sections, reflect, and make notes.
  • Summarize and review using notes.
  • Continue to read, reflect, and make notes.
  • Summarize again.
  • Identify theme in second paragraph; discuss personal story connected to theme; demonstrate with example.

Assignment: writing: summarize story, identify one of the themes from the story, and write a personal story that relates to the theme.




Lesson Great and Greatly

Objective: Student analyze the word greatly and make notes of their findings. Student will present their word. Student will look at different examples of great and greatly. Student will read a simple story using the words.  First year and second year middle school ESL students.
Outcome: Student will be able to distinguish the usage in great and greatly.

Assessment: Students will take a quiz using great and greatly. Student will write a simple story and practice using the words in the story.

Learning activities and experiences: Have students analyze the word using a set up predefined criteria. To change the monotony, add new or different criteria. Have students present their word. I like to have students practice saying their word multiple times during the presentation. You my find that students incorrectly use the word greatly and so this would be a good opportunity to do a quick review of adjectives and adverbs.  Provide some examples for students looks at. Have them make correct choices.  Provide a simple story for students to read. Make note of the words great and greatly in the story.  Finally, have students write their own short story using the words.

Lesson Audi’s E-diesel

Objective: Students will research and actively think of the word while completing each of the criteria. Students will present their word. Student will read story and decode its message.
Outcome: Student will be able to think about the key pieces of information from the story and make connections with a personal experience. First year and second year middle school ESL students.

Word Analysis: This will look at words using the list of criteria.
1. definition in English or native language
2. example
3. example
4. story example: this will give students a chance to reexamine after knowing the definition and make comparison with other examples
5. people that could be associated with the word
6. place that could be associated with the word

Sample story for middle schoolers learning English as a second language:
The German automotive manufacturer Audi has created eco-friendly fuel called e-diesel. Its production process, which only requires (needs) solar and wind energy, water, and CO2, will be of great help in preserving nature.

Bring to attention two questions that students should figure out:
1. What did the manufacturer make?
2. Why does the e-diesel preserve nature?

Bring to attention a central message of the story: preserving nature. Ask students if this is important to them. Asked students if they have “perserved nature.” Ask students about things that are important for middle school students.

Assessment: Reflection that looks at the word they studied, summary of the story with thoughts on the things covered in the lesson and thoughts on perserving nature.

Strategy for Making Insights

Previously I taught this strategy and found it to be trickier for students grasp and apply than some of the others that I’ve used.  I think part of the reason they have trouble making insights is because they are still in the process of decoding the information when we go over a reading passage.  So my goal was to create a more effective way to apply this strategy and design the lesson using the principles from Wiggin’s and McTighe’s backward design.  The end goal is for students to make insight after reading a passage, and to develop the knowledge and skills, students will need to prerequisite two activities.  First, the student and I look for words to better understand for a particular section of a passage and share and discuss our findings.  Then we practice reading the same section and make notes.  The third step is to review the notes and then make insights.  Assessment for this lesson could be done in three ways. One would be to have a test on the vocabulary words.  Second, the teacher could observe the student’s notes and insights. And the third way could be a performance assessment where students would be evaluated on their vocabulary notes, passage notes, and the insights they made.

Vocabulary Activity

This activity is collaborative between student-teacher. Ask student to look at a reading passage and circle words to better understand.  Then divide these words to investigate. Student and teacher works independently for 5-10 minutes and investigate the words. Student should explore alternative meanings, examples, and also examine how the word was used in the text.  The two regroup and present their findings, discuss, and remediate.

This activity was done:
1:1 synchronous
High school senior second language learner