English Banana.com ESL Blog

The latest free material and news from English Banana.com


FREE ESL Lesson Plan: Mode 1 Vocabulary Session

This is a free lesson plan from You Are The Course Book – Lesson Plans by Matt Purland.  You can download the complete book for free here. (.pdf – 6 MB) This book is in the public domain, which means that anybody can use it for commercial and non-commercial purposes.

Mode 1 Vocabulary Session

Method:

1. T asks each group to write down 8 interesting and random words or phrases. They must be content words, not function words. They could be completely random, or begin with the same letter (elicited from a SS), or from a particular topic, e.g. Music. SS work together – one list per group. SS can use dictionaries. One SS from each group reads out their words and T selects the most interesting and random words to write on the board – 8 in total. T does not allow boring words, e.g. table, chair, book… SS write down the whole list.

2. T checks that everybody knows all the words and leads a pronunciation drill with the words. SS have to listen and repeat each word after T.

3. T asks SS to work as a team and write down the type of each word, e.g. noun, verb, adjective, etc. When each group is ready T asks for a SS to come to the board and write the word types on the board next to the vocabulary words. T elicits whether they are correct or not. If not, T elicits the correct answer and the SS writes it.

4. Repeat 3, except with number of syllables in each word.

5. Repeat 3, except with the stressed syllable in each word, which is underlined.

6. Repeat 3, except with the stressed vowel sound in each word. SS writes it with Clear Alphabet, if possible. If not, T elicits it from SS who use the Clear Alphabet chart (p.107). SS could also write each word in Clear Alphabet.

7. Repeat 3, except with whether the stressed vowel sound is short, long, or diphthong. T models the stressed vowel sounds and SS repeat.

8. Repeat 3, except with schwa sounds circled. By the end of the session, your board might resemble something like this (with words from the topic of Music:)

Vocabulary Lesson Plan - Image 1

…and so on.

Tip:

  • Try not to spend too long doing the vocabulary session. Remember to put together a lesson that provides a balanced ‘meal’ – where different skills are practised and different student needs are met. For example, while one SS might be happy to work with vocabulary for the whole lesson, another SS might prefer free practice activities, and so on.


The First English Banana Trust Summer School was a Great Success!

Last week the first English Banana Trust Summer School was held at Greshams School in Holt, Norfolk. The focus was on teacher training and how to teach without a course book, and we were pleased to welcome four English language teachers from Russia, Hungary, and Serbia. Course tutor Matt Purland focused on training the teachers to teach without using a course book, based on methods from his recent manual You Are The Course Book. The teachers thoroughly enjoyed the week, which was sponsored by English Banana Trust. Apart from five hours of lessons per day – and plenty of homework! – the participants were able to enjoy a diverse number of outings ranging from a visit to the famous seal colony at Blakeney Point, a guided tour of Norwich with an experienced historian, and several delightful shared meals and get-togethers with trustees and friends of the Trust.

Here are a few comments from some of the participants at the end of the course:

‘I feel I’ve gained enough confidence to teach without materials. I also feel that my creativity has been exposed to the higher level and that’s really good and exciting.’ – Marija

‘I feel the passion to continue my self-education in this area which I consider to be really innovative…’ – Nadia

Course tutor Matt commented: ‘I would like to thank the Trust for all their hard work and dedication in staging the summer school this year. We have all really gained a lot out of it. It was wonderful to watch our teachers in action and to see them grow in confidence and be able to teach their own lessons without a course book – or any printed material.’

If you would like to get involved with next year’s EBT Summer School – as either a participant or a tutor – please contact English Banana Trust at: ebtrust@englishbanana.com

Or if you would like to book Matt to run a similar week-long training course at your educational establishment, please do get in touch at: info@englishbanana.com

Here are some photos of the participants hard at work in the classroom, and (in bottom picture) with tutor Matt after the final session of the course:


Practice IELTS Speaking Test – Part 3 (VIDEO!!)

Learn how to answer questions in Part 3 of the IELTS Speaking Test with experienced IELTS trainer Rob Lewis. Listen to him – he knows what he’s talking about!  You can visit his Youtube channel here: http://www.youtube.com/user/voxguru