I only need Juan reason to listen to music in class…

There’s been an over-abundance of ESL posts on this blog, I know. I’ll get back to German, Latin, etc. soon enough, I promise. I’ve been building a curriculum from scratch for this ESL job I just took, so lately my mind has been concerned with little else.

Today’s post deals with GRAMMAR and LISTENING COMPREHENSION in one fell swoop! We’re covering “to be” in class this week – a new concept for some students and a much needed review for others. After going over the basics, I decided to make it a little fun by letting them listen to some of their favorite songs. Including one by, you guessed it, One Direction.

I whipped up a quick worksheet featuring some lyrics from popular songs, leaving blanks in the place of forms of “to be” and the contractions that go with it. We’d listen to the song, and then rewind to the appropriate section so they’d have a second and third chance to listen for the correct form.

The kids enjoyed it a lot, and were actually quite successful in filling in the blanks. Fun was had by all. (Except for the kid who tried to steal my speaker. Fun was had by most, suspensions were had by some.)

Grab the worksheet after the jump: Continue reading

Make like a tree, and get outta here.

Example:

Gillian decided it was time to turn over a new _______ and forget her past mistakes.

Why don’t you take a _______ out of Simon’s book and start helping.

Autumn came suddenly and the first _______ had fallen before August had even ended.

Answer: leaf

Our friend Tim gives us this great lesson plan on how words can be used in different ways. Many ESL students get confused by these multi-tasking words. I mean, how do you tell the difference between “He leaves,” and “The leaves fell”? Tim recommends using gapped sentences to help students use context clues to decipher just that. I’ll probably be using this in my ESL classroom in the next few weeks.

Speaking of leaves…

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Whap! Biff! Ka-POW!

For Christmas this year, I gave my 13-year-old cousin a series of Spider-Man comic books. He’s never been much of a reader, but he DEVOURED those few issues in a matter of hours. Got me thinking. Comic books and graphic novels are often regarded as lesser forms of literature, but if it gets a kid reading who normally dreads the task, how can that be a bad thing?

Adam West Batman is the best Batman.

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Modals and Advice Columnists – But wait, there’s more!

Remember that worksheet I posted a lil’ while ago that used an advice column to teach modals? Well, here’s an extension activity. This new worksheet works with the same article, but it introduces vocab and English idioms and whatnot. It’d be good for more beginner students to aid in their overall comprehension of the content.

Download it after the jump. Continue reading

Modals and Advice Columnists

I recently took on a long-term subbing gig as an ESL/ELL teacher at an inner-city charter school. The previous teacher left nothing behind, so I’m starting from scratch, and developing my own curriculum as I go. Heaven help us.

How I feel after only the first few days.

How I feel after only the first few days. These kids ain’t easy.

I’ve decided to start with an “advice column” unit, in order to teach modal verbs (can, should, might, etc.) and to develop writing skills. There are many great resources online, such as this quick how-to on teaching modals on Busy Teacher, but I wanted to add my own touch to it.

I took an existing advice column, found here, answering the letter of a girl whose boyfriend refuses to shower. The poor, unfortunate soul. Add an assignment to find some modal verbs… finish it off with some reading comprehension questions… and… VOILA! A worksheet to drill a mundane grammar concept in a slightly fun way.

Snatch the free download after the jump:

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