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    • #17777
      Nicholas Northall
      Moderator
          @nick-northall

          Share the reading lesson you planned in the previous topic on the forum. You can attach documents as required. If you taught the lesson, feel free to also share your reflection. 

          Read each other’s contributions and identify:

          • 1 idea you would like to steal for use in your own classes.
          • 1 suggestion – this could be for improvement or just an alternative way of doing something.
        • #60607
          Robert Dailey
          Participant
              @robertd

              Hello everyone.

              You should find an attachment with my unit 18 reading lesson plan.

              Any comments / thoughts would be much appreciated.

              Thanks,

              Robert

              Attachments:
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              • #60792
                Nicholas Northall
                Moderator
                    @nick-northall

                    Hi Robert,

                    Thanks for sharing this. Interesting to read about a bespoke 121 lesson in a business context! It’s great to read that you are encouraging your learner to read as much as possible. It’s also great to read that your lesson helps to support reading. Why are you supporting reading in general? Has this been something you have discovered through analysing your learner’s needs?

                    I like how you are going to use the text as a vehicle to develop relevant ‘business’ related vocabulary. I also like how you are going to us the text to develop noticing of schwa with the learner also reading out the text. I’d be careful about having too many lesson aims here as you appear to be focusing on reading, vocabulary, pronunciation, grammar and writing. I’m not really sure how the grammar point relates to the article you are using. The other activities do exploit the reading though.

                    Thanks,

                    Nick

                • #60616
                  Gajinder Kaur
                  Participant
                      @gk

                      Hello All!

                      PFA  my Lesson Plan and authentic reading text transcript.

                      Kindly give your critical comments so I can make it better.

                      Thank You!

                      Attachments:
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                      • #60793
                        Nicholas Northall
                        Moderator
                            @nick-northall

                            Hi Gajinder,

                            Thanks for sharing your lesson plan here.  It’s good to read that you are using this text to address your learners’ needs. I am interested why the text is being using as reading exercise; I wonder if it would more authentic to be delivered as a listening lesson (perhaps with the learners reading along at the same time?).

                            I also wonder why you have chosen quite an old text? I wonder if Jeff Bezos has delivered a more recent speech stating how Amazon has fared in the last decade. Although this speech is very motivational – I think I have seen it on Youtube.

                            I think your first reading for gist task will engage your learners, but then I don’t understand the vocab task which follows this. Are you pre-teaching blocking vocab for the next task? Perhaps the second reading task could include a few more questions, as the learners may only need to read parts of the text to answer the questions.

                            I really like your post-reading task. They might need some time to plan their speech though. Are they expected to give it in the same lesson? Perhaps a process approach over a few lessons might work here?

                            Cheers,

                            Nick

                        • #60618
                          Gajinder Kaur
                          Participant
                              @gk

                              The transcript is pasted here as I could not upload it:

                              “What Matters More Than Your Talents”

                              delivered by JEFF BEZOS

                              Background

                              This speech was originally delivered as the baccalaureate remarks to graduates from Princeton University on May 30, 2010.

                              Speech Transcript

                              As a kid, I spent my summers with my grandparents on their ranch in Texas. I helped fix windmills, vaccinate cattle, and do other chores. We also watched soap operas every afternoon, especially “Days of our Lives.” My grandparents belonged to a Caravan Club, a group of Airstream trailer owners who travel together around the U.S. and Canada. And every few summers, we’d join the caravan. We’d hitch up the Airstream trailer to my grandfather’s car, and off we’d go, in a line with 300 other Airstream adventurers. I loved and worshipped my grandparents and I really looked forward to these trips. On one particular trip, I was about 10 years old. I was rolling around in the big bench seat in the back of the car. My grandfather was driving. And my grandmother had the passenger seat. She smoked throughout these trips, and I hated the smell.

                              At that age, I’d take any excuse to make estimates and do minor arithmetic. I’d calculate our gas mileage — figure out useless statistics on things like grocery spending. I’d been hearing an ad campaign about smoking. I can’t remember the details, but basically the ad said, every puff of a cigarette takes some number of minutes off of your life: I think it might have been two minutes per puff. At any rate, I decided to do the math for my grandmother. I estimated the number of cigarettes per days, estimated the number of puffs per cigarette and so on. When I was satisfied that I’d come up with a reasonable number, I poked my head into the front of the car, tapped my grandmother on the shoulder, and proudly proclaimed, “At two minutes per puff, you’ve taken nine years off your life!”

                              I have a vivid memory of what happened, and it was not what I expected. I expected to be applauded for my cleverness and arithmetic skills. “Jeff, you’re so smart. You had to have made some tricky estimates, figure out the number of minutes in a year and do some division.” That’s not what happened. Instead, my grandmother burst into tears. I sat in the backseat and did not know what to do. While my grandmother sat crying, my grandfather, who had been driving in silence, pulled over onto the shoulder of the highway. He got out of the car and came around and opened my door and waited for me to follow. Was I in trouble? My grandfather was a highly intelligent, quiet man. He had never said a harsh word to me, and maybe this was to be the first time? Or maybe he would ask that I get back in the car and apologize to my grandmother. I had no experience in this realm with my grandparents and no way to gauge what the consequences might be. We stopped beside the trailer. My grandfather looked at me, and after a bit of silence, he gently and calmly said, “Jeff, one day you’ll understand that it’s harder to be kind than clever.”

                              What I want to talk to you about today is the difference between gifts and choices. Cleverness is a gift, kindness is a choice. Gifts are easy — they’re given after all. Choices can be hard. You can seduce yourself with your gifts if you’re not careful, and if you do, it’ll probably be to the detriment of your choices.

                              This is a group with many gifts. I’m sure one of your gifts is the gift of a smart and capable brain. I’m confident that’s the case because admission is competitive and if there weren’t some signs that you’re clever, the dean of admission wouldn’t have let you in.

                              Your smarts will come in handy because you will travel in a land of marvels. We humans — plodding as we are — will astonish ourselves. We’ll invent ways to generate clean energy and a lot of it. Atom by atom, we’ll assemble tiny machines that will enter cell walls and make repairs. This month comes the extraordinary but also inevitable news that we’ve synthesized life. In the coming years, we’ll not only synthesize it, but we’ll engineer it to specifications. I believe you’ll even see us understand the human brain. Jules Verne, Mark Twain, Galileo, Newton — all the curious from the ages would have wanted to be alive most of all right now. As a civilization, we will have so many gifts, just as you as individuals have so many individual gifts as you sit before me.

                              How will you use these gifts? And will you take pride in your gifts or pride in your choices?

                              I got the idea to start Amazon 16 years ago. I came across the fact that Web usage was growing at 2,300 percent per year. I’d never seen or heard of anything that grew that fast, and the idea of building an online bookstore with millions of titles — something that simply couldn’t exist in the physical world — was very exciting to me. I had just turned 30 years old, and I’d been married for a year. I told my wife MacKenzie that I wanted to quit my job and go do this crazy thing that probably wouldn’t work since most startups don’t, and I wasn’t sure what would happen after that. MacKenzie (also a Princeton grad and sitting here in the second row) told me I should go for it. As a young boy, I’d been a garage inventor. I’d invented an automatic gate closer out of cement-filled tires, a solar cooker that didn’t work very well out of an umbrella and tinfoil, baking-pan alarms to entrap my siblings. I’d always wanted to be an inventor, and she wanted me to follow my passion.

                              I was working at a financial firm in New York City with a bunch of very smart people, and I had a brilliant boss that I much admired. I went to my boss and told him I wanted to start a company selling books on the Internet. He took me on a long walk in Central Park, listened carefully to me, and finally said, “That sounds like a really good idea, but it would be an even better idea for someone who didn’t already have a good job.” That logic made some sense to me, and he convinced me to think about it for 48 hours before making a final decision. Seen in that light, it really was a difficult choice, but ultimately, I decided I had to give it a shot. I didn’t think I’d regret trying and failing. And I suspected I would always be haunted by a decision to not try at all. After much consideration, I took the less safe path to follow my passion, and I’m proud of that choice.

                              Tomorrow, in a very real sense, your life — the life you author from scratch on your own — begins.

                              How will you use your gifts? What choices will you make?

                              Will inertia be your guide, or will you follow your passions?

                              Will you follow dogma, or will you be original?

                              Will you choose a life of ease, or a life of service and adventure?

                              Will you wilt under criticism, or will you follow your convictions?

                              Will you bluff it out when you’re wrong, or will you apologize?

                              Will you guard your heart against rejection, or will you act when you fall in love?

                              Will you play it safe, or will you be a little bit swashbuckling?

                              When it’s tough, will you give up, or will you be relentless?

                              Will you be a cynic, or will you be a builder?

                              Will you be clever at the expense of others, or will you be kind?

                              I will hazard a prediction. When you are 80 years old, and in a quiet moment of reflection narrating for only yourself the most personal version of your life story, the telling that will be most compact and meaningful will be the series of choices you have made. In the end, we are our choices. Build yourself a great story.

                              Thank you and good luck!

                              FOOTNOTES

                              1.    This speech was published on the Princeton website.

                               

                            • #60748
                              Nicholas Northall
                              Moderator
                                  @nick-northall

                                  Dear All,

                                  Thanks to Robert and Gajinder for sharing a recent reading lesson they have taught. What about the rest of you? This task asks you to read each other’s lesson plan and comment on something you would to steal and something you think could be changed.

                                  I’m looking forward to reading your contributions!

                                  Cheers,

                                  Nick

                                • #60774
                                  Erica
                                  Participant
                                      @erica

                                      I’m going to comment on Robert’s lesson plan.

                                      1 idea you would like to steal for use in your own classes.

                                      I really like “Reading Task 1 – prediction”. A simple activity like prediction is engaging and makes a good gist question.

                                      1 suggestion – this could be for improvement or just an alternative way of doing something.

                                      How long is the lesson??

                                      Although I like both follow-up ideas, I strongly doubt there would be room for both during the lesson for several reasons, e.g. time constraints  (the whole lesson), it is important to allow enough time to do all activities well so that the students can process the (new) language without being rushed onto the next exercise.

                                      I would focus on only  1 productive skill (speaking or writing) and the relevant in-depth/ focus on activity (weak forms or grammar). For instance, you could do the “Focus on Schwa/ Weak Forms” activity before the freer speaking practice (questions). During the speaking you could monitor and focus on whether the students use weak forms. After the speaking activity, you could write on the board some nice phrases the students produced and challenge their use of schwa.

                                      On the other hand if you think that writing a short report/summary is an authentic activity (and thus it would be more useful to your students), you should focus on that instead.

                                       

                                       

                                       

                                      • #60794
                                        Nicholas Northall
                                        Moderator
                                            @nick-northall

                                            Hi Erica,

                                            Thanks for commenting on Robert’s lesson here. Yes, I love prediction tasks as they help learners to develop their top down reading strategies and create interest, useful language and communication practice.

                                            Yes, I agree about the lesson length. Perhaps the writing task could be set for homework – or to be completed in the next lesson? In either case, with relevant support the learner should be able to produce a useful piece of writing.

                                            Thanks,

                                            Nick

                                        • #60795
                                          Nicholas Northall
                                          Moderator
                                              @nick-northall

                                              Dear All,

                                              Thanks to Robert and Gajinder for sharing a recent reading lesson they have taught. And thanks to Erica for commenting on Robert’s plan. This was particularly interesting given the very different contexts they work in. If you haven’t yet read their contributions, please do so and share what you would like to steal from them as well as one suggestion you have.

                                              Likewise, if you are able to share one of your own reading lessons, and haven’t yet done so, please feel free. As practising teachers, I think it can be really beneficial to share ideas and get feedback, and learn from, fellow teaching professionals.

                                              Cheers,

                                              Nick

                                            • #60796
                                              Robert Dailey
                                              Participant
                                                  @robertd

                                                  Hi Erica, Nick,

                                                  Thanks a lot for your comments.

                                                  With one-to-one classes, I generally don´t worry too much about time as students will often ask me for help with something out of the blue (like an email they´ve received) and there´s often a fairly high dogme element. This said, yes, I agree, there was a lot in the plan for sixty minutes (!) and I didn´t in the end include the grammar element (about news headlines). On having a closer look at the text, I also found some example phrases that I could use to compare the pronunciation of the + consonant /ðə/ with the pronunciation of the+vowel /ði:/ which is handy as we´re moving on to some work revising articles.

                                                  I´m generally trying to promote extensive reading in part because of the reading I´ve done for this course which says that nothing beats reading for learning new vocabulary. I also read a novel of my choice during a Spanish course I once did and I found that I always noticed language in the novel that we had been working on in class.

                                                  On reading in general, as a teacher, I love working with newspapers. Students normally engage with a contemporary issue and one quite short article can be mined and used in so many different ways. Using just one A4 sheet of paper per student, I´m fairly confident that I can deliver a 60 minute class which the students will find interesting, relevant and useful.

                                                  And as you said Nick, if there isn´t time in class, a writing task can be done for homework.

                                                  Thanks again!

                                                   

                                                   

                                                • #61082
                                                  Erica
                                                  Participant
                                                      @erica

                                                      Hello everyone,

                                                      Here is my lesson plan!

                                                       

                                                      :mail:

                                                       

                                                       

                                                      Attachments:
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                                                      • #61615
                                                        Nicholas Northall
                                                        Moderator
                                                            @nick-northall

                                                            Hi Erica,

                                                            Thanks for sharing. It’s great that you have chosen an article that the learners will actually find relevant to their lives! Often we only think about whether we will find it interesting or its ‘level’. You have included a range of tasks to exploit the text ensuring that the learners are first engaged in the topic and then have actual reading practice. I particularly like the third scan reading/guessing meaning from context reading task.  I personally think it can be a good idea having more than the typical 2 reading tasks (i.e. gist and then detail) – why not have more?! You could actually focus on one of the reading tasks (I think the final one) to help develop reading strategies (i.e. making the learners aware of how they can read better – what clues help you guess meaning, etc). The post-reading tasks also exploit the task. Perhaps the learners could present their ideas (you mention share) but perhaps this could be more formal (?) and then form the basis of their homework?

                                                            Thanks again,

                                                            Nick

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