October 21, 1998
Ling 472: Lynn Henrichsen
ESL Reading/Writing Lesson Plan
Who the Lesson is Intended for:
… Medium-Intermediate proficiency
… Adult Students literate in their native language
… Primarily native Spanish speakers
… ESL situation
… From a previous lesson, the students have learned words describing people and their characteristics and qualities
Goals/Objectives of the lesson:
… To apply the newly acquired vocabulary words in a reading and writing situation: have the students "read" (the transparencies while they listen to the story) and have them write about a friend
List of Materials needed:
… The story, "I Like You" by Sandol Stoddard Warburg
… Selected transparencies of the story and an overhead projector
… Paper and pencils for the students to write
Focus on Reading
Introduce the lesson by describing the book I bought for my husband when we were engaged to be married. Explain why children's books are often beneficial for adults-they transmit meaning in a fun, but plain and understandable manner. In this case, it was a playful way to tell my fiance "I like you."
The introduction is to prep the students for the upcoming story about friends.
Ask the students, "In your culture, is it common to tell people that you like them?" "Is it hard for you to say 'I like you.'" "How do you let someone know you care for him/her?"
These cultural questions, activate the students' schemata about how as individuals and as a society express care for others. The questions stimulate conversation and create a giving/sharing environment.
Read the story, stopping occasionally to ask, "Have you ever done that?"
"What do you do with your friends for fun?" "Who is one of your good friends?" Use the selected transparencies as you read so that the students may follow along with the story.
Further questions continue to stimulate the students' minds and keep their attention. By interrupting and asking questions directed to the students, the students must think about their own lives and what they do with their friends. The context of the English-based story, will hopefully prompt the students to think in English about their activities.
Thinking in English will reinforce the language as a whole, but particularly the new vocabulary.
The transparencies are a visual cue connecting word symbols with sounds.
Information Gap Activity
… After you have read the story, instruct the students to write their own ideas about "what qualities are important in a good friend" for 3 minutes without stopping.
This activity encourages them to use the new vocabulary from the previous lesson about peoples' qualities.
… After the pre-writing activity, ask the students what they wrote. Write their ideas on the board. Writing on the board is a good tool to reinforce the new vocabulary.
… Spark a short discussion by asking questions like, "What have you done for fun?" "Who do you spend time with?" "Where do you like to go with a friend?" "What makes a person a good friend?" "What characteristics do you like in a friend?" "How can you be a good friend?"
More questions will gear the students up for the next writing activity.
Focus on Writing
… Now, instruct the students to write a story. Give them some options, either "What is a good friend?/How can you be a good friend?" or "Tell about a friend who influenced your life?" Have them write for about 10 minutes.
There are two options to write about in order to accommodate the needs of the students. Some who are more advanced than others may be better equipped to handle the question about an influential friend. For those who are less comfortable, they can write about what a good friend is.
The students were particularly prepared for the first option by the activities leading up to the writing focus exercise.
Putting words on paper solidifies the students' ideas. It also lets them exercise their personal voice and helps them to "own" their writing.
… After they stop writing, put the students into groups of 2-3 to discuss their papers with each other to do peer editing (about 5-7minutes). Group work stimulates conversation in the second language and a sense of community among the students.
… To conclude ask for volunteers to read their stories to the class.