November 11, 1998
Ling 472: Lynn Henrichsen
6-9 years old
Variety of ethnic backgrounds: Russian, Asian, Hispanic
Elementary school ESL classroom
Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree
The students will dictate a story to the teacher.
They will learn key vocabulary that they themselves choose.
They will be exposed to the language experience approach to writing.
They will have fun playing BINGO.
They will eat a treat and watch a video which will serve as a listening exercise.
The book and video Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree.
Bread, butter, and honey.
Blank BINGO cards.
Introduction and Review:
Remind the students about what they have learned in science about bees and how bees make honey. Tell them that today, we will learn about someone who loves honey. Ask them, "Do you like honey?" "How does honey taste?"
These questions prep the students for the coming story about Pooh Bear. It's a way to stimulate conversation and create a warm, unthreatening environment where the students feel comfortable to interact with one another. It's a great way to activate schemata.
Read the story Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree to the students. Stop frequently to ask questions like, "What do you think will happen next?" "What kind of bear is Pooh?" "Is Rabbit happy that Pooh is stuck in his house?" "How will they get Pooh unstuck?"
These questions activate the students' schemata. They keep the students' attention as the students make predictions about what will happen next in the story. (DR-TA-Directed-Reading-Thinking Activity.)
1. After completing the story, ask the children to call out new or unfamiliar words from the story. Ask them who the characters are in the story. Make lists of the words and names on the board.
This is a chance to make the unfamiliar vocabulary words clearer for the students. By writing the words on the board, you create a visual symbol for the word or name. This emphasizes the connection between words and meaning.
2. Now, instruct the students to retell the story as a group, out loud to you (the teacher). As they relate the story in their own words, write it on the board. After writing the students' story, read the story orally once alone and then 1-2 times chorally as a class.
3. Let the children choose what words they want to study as key word vocabulary. Circle those words.
Here's a chance for student input, they can express their own opinions about what words they wish to study. Student input about course work is important because it helps increase motivation because the students feel like they are in charge of their learning.
4. Hand out blank BINGO cards. Instruct the students to fill in the empty spaces with the key word vocabulary circled in the story on the board. If there aren't enough vocabulary words, they can also fill spaces with character names. Then play BINGO. As you draw each word, say it aloud several times and encourage the students to repeat it with you as they find it on their own card. Use Fruit Loops or Cheerios for the markers.
5. With the new vocabulary, instruct each student to draw a picture of a story using the new vocabulary. Also, have them write a few sentences or words (depending on their level) explaining what is happening in the picture. Afterwards, in a circle, go around and let each student share their story and explain their picture.
This activity is good because it can be adapted to the different proficiency levels among the students. More advanced students can choose to write more, while less advanced students can simply draw.
6. Serve fresh, homemade bread with butter and honey. (If you've got a bread maker to use at home, you can whip the bread out in no time.)
7. Let the students relax and enjoy the video Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree as they eat their bread.
After hearing the story read to them and then after studying the vocabulary, this is a chance for the students to relax and have some fun. Because they are now familiar with the characters and the plot, the video will also be a good listening exercise.
Whenever there is individual work, walk around the classroom and be available for students to ask questions. This way, you can also monitor whatever conversation is taking place between students as they exchange ideas (like when they are drawing their pictures, they'll probably also
be talking together.)
The stories they produce serve as writing and art samples indicating their ability to use the ideas and vocabulary presented in a comprehensible way. The presentations of their stories are another opportunity to gage their understandings.
Take a moment to record your thoughts on the lesson including it's strengths and weaknesses.