First Day – English
February 15 to May 30, 2012
|Activity||The First Day of Class|
|Objectives||To review basic vocabulary and sentence structures, assess students’ competence level and prior knowledge, and get to know the students.|
|Materials||Cut out pictures of nouns (person, place or thing) on a sticky paper; stop watch; a bell|
|Duration||Two (2) hours|
|Class size||20 students|
Warm up Activity: Question Circle
Have the students form a circles. Instruct them to initiate a conversation by telling something about themselves before asking a question. Start the activity rolling by initiating the question to the person on your right. For example: Hello, my name is Giovanni. What’s yours? He/She answers the question. And asks a different question to the person on his/her right. For example: I’m Maria. I live in Siracusa. How about you? Allow this exchange for about two minutes, then ring a bell. After everybody has taken a turn, reverse the order by asking a question to the person on your left. Make sure that nobody asks the same question.
Vocabulary Game: What am I?
Pair the students and let them face each other. Go around the room and, with the use of sticky notes, stick a picture at the back of each student. Instruct the students that the picture is the other’s “secret identity” and no one is allowed to mention it at all. Choose pictures showing common everyday things but to make sure, ask the students to raise their hands if they are in doubt as to the English word of the picture at the back of their pair. Provide these students assistance. Let the students guess each others’ secret identity by asking questions that are answerable by yes or no. The only clue that is given on the board is that the word is the name of a person, place or thing. Each student is allowed to ask two consecutive questions before attempting to identify the word. For example: The secret identity is BANANA. The student may ask: “Am I an animal?” (No, you aren’t);“Am I a plant?” (Yes, you are) ; “Am I a sunflower?” (No, you aren’t) Since the student is unable to guess the word, s/he lets the other take her/his turn. They take turns until one of them guesses his “secret identity”. The student should then identify himself to the teacher. For example: “Excuse me, am I a banana?” (Yes, you are). The teacher retrieves the picture at the back of the student and lets her/him write her/his real name on it. This may be a faster way to remember the student’s name. The other student waits until he finds another partner.
Focus: This is a fun way to review “Yes-No Questions”. While the students are performing this activity, the teacher goes around identifying students who are comfortable with the language and those who are having difficulties. This information can be useful in future group activities.
Lexis: Nouns or names of things in four categories:
- Animals (farm animals): sheep, horse, cow, rabbit
- Fruits: lemon, strawberry, apple, cherry
- Insects: bee, mosquito, ant, beetle
- Transportation: bus, bicycle, ship, truck
- Vegetables: carrot, corn, onion, pepper
Activity on Categorizing words: Who do I belong to?
Let the class identify all the pictures that were used as secret identities in class. Write them all down on the board. Allow the students to group the words that they think belong together and the reason for it. For example: banana, apple and lemon belong to the category “fruits”.
Getting to know each other.
Allow the students to write down five questions they ask when they want to get to know someone. Give them time to think and write down their questions. After everyone has finished this task, let each student tell something about him/herself by answering the same questions. At the end, the students get to know more about their teacher through this question and answer activity.
Note: This activity is meant to better assess the skill levels in the class. To achieve best results, the students are allowed to act and speak naturally and spontaneously. In this activity, the teacher is an observer. She takes notes of the grammatical structures and vocabulary that they use, and the common mistakes made among the students. This information can be used as the focus in succeeding lessons.
A Recap of the Day’s Activities.
Allow the students to speak up by recalling the activities they have accomplished during the class. Take time to review with the students their skills in making simple questions, correct errors they have made, and suggest other ways to ask the same question. Write down the information on the board to allow the slow learners to catch up.
Ending the Class: “Let’s call it a day.”
End the class by introducing the expression, “It’s already 5:30 pm. The class is ended. Let’s call it a day.” Stand by the door and shake their hands as each student leaves. Try to remember their names by and something unique about them.