‘Seasons’ – an online lesson plan for lower level learners

This lesson has been created by the 2:19 during the Coronavirus pandemic. At this time it isn’t clear when we will be able to teach again face to face so many churches have moved over to teaching online using video conferencing platforms. We hope this is useful for those who have made that transition.

Online Lesson Plan (Zoom)

Topic: Seasons              

Level: Beginners/Elementary/Pre-intermediate

 

Preparing your learners before the lesson

  1. Post the vocabulary words with the definitions on your WhatsApp group three days before your lesson. (see vocab cards attachment)
  2. Have them match the words and repost their answers. Of course, this means you have to be ready to comment on their responses.
  3. Post the following discussion questions on WhatsApp so that the learners can begin to gather the language and thoughts they need to talk about the questions at the end of the online lesson:
    1. What is your favourite season and why do you like it?
    2. Tell us about the seasons in your country? Which months are they in?
    3. Which season is the best time for a tourist to visit your country? Why?

 

Preparing your teaching team before the lesson

  1. Virtual lessons can still involve the whole team but will require some intentional preparation. For this lesson use your most techie assistants to put together a short video (3-4 mins). Set the scene for two people meeting in the street (socially distanced). Repeat the same situation four times but have them dress according to one of the four seasons (changing each time). i.e. winter – a woolly hat, a thick coat, scarf and gloves. The friends greet each other and comment on the weather (as we Brits do!)

Angela – “Hi Sarah, lovely to see you. Isn’t it perishing?”

Sarah – “Freezing! I’m off home for a cup of tea”

      Keep the conversations short focussing on language we use to describe the weather.

  1. Ask one of the team to be your ‘chat room’ host. Here they can list new vocabulary as it arises and save it. When the lesson is finished this list can be sent to the WhatsApp group for the learners to use as they see fit.
  2. Invite one of the team to be responsible for ‘private room chat. I’ll explain how you might like to use this later in the lesson.
  3. Assign assistants to be ‘breakout group’ leaders and make sure they know what the purpose of the breakout session is and how best to achieve this.
  4. As the teacher you can use PowerPoint to organise your slides and lesson plan. This is extremely helpful in guiding your learners through the session and keeping to time. It can also be shared as a screen share in plenary sessions and in breakout rooms. If you are going to share your screen in breakout rooms you will need to send your power point to the breakout group leaders prior to the session and give them permission on your zoom settings to share their screens.
  5. You can upload the materials from Start to Speak to your computer and then into your PowerPoint. This does take time in the preparation stage but will save you time when teaching online.

 

Resources – hyperlinks for resources have been added

 

Aim of the lesson

  • To help learners increase their vocabulary
  • To talk about the four seasons
  • To enable learners to talk more fluently in the context of discussing the weather at different times of year
  • To revise or present prepositions of place.

 

Learners will be able to:

  • Name various objects from all four seasons
  • Categorise the objects according to the season in which they are found
  • Use prepositions of place to describe a picture

 

Procedure:

  1. When meeting online establish some ground rules. Invite people to speak calling on each person by name.
  2. Allow time for people to join the group. While you want to encourage the group to start promptly there may be unforeseen problems with the internet and so it is always helpful to have a 5-10 minutes buffer available. You can use this time to invite your learners to share something from the past week with the rest of the group.
  3. Introducing topic: Once you are ready to begin, introduce your session using the prepared video. (5 minutes)
  4. Elicit from the learners emerging language. (5 minutes)
  5. Provide a table for them like this one:
  1. Play the video again and have the learners write down any descriptive language they hear, under the corresponding season. (5 minutes)
  2. Take feedback from the learners and have your designated chat room assistant write down the correct spelling for language as it emerges. (5 minutes)
  3. Now that the topic for the lesson has been identified clearly you may like to share your power point to help the class know what you will be covering in the rest of the session.
  4. Put learners into Breakout Groups with the designated assistant. Upload the photos from the Seasons chapter (see Seasonal objects thumbnails) to your shared screen (preferably you will have already done this onto your power point) The learners talk together about the photographs and note any emerging language. Together decide which photos go with which season and why. (10 minutes)
  • The teacher can visit the breakout groups. This activity may take about ten minutes. The teacher will call the groups back together and facilitate feedback from all groups including and inviting all learners to participate. (10 minutes)
  • You can consolidate this session by doing a ‘charades’-type Using the ‘private chat room’ mode, one person sends a ‘scenario’ message (as suggested below) to one of the learners. The learner then acts out the scenario and the rest of the group tries to guess what the person is miming using language from the chat room and say which season this activity belongs to. For example:-
    1. Sitting around a campfire warming your hands
    2. Making a snowman
    3. Playing on the beach and in the sea
    4. Eating hot cross buns
    5. Going on an egg hunt
    6. Picking apple blossom
    7. Making honey!

(10 minutes – you can end a 60-minute lesson at this point)

  • Extension: Depending on the level of your learners you can continue with and adapt the next part of the session. We suggest an activity which assumes learners understand the basic terminology for prepositions of place but encourages them to revise their use of prepositions while developing their vocabulary. If possible, use four breakout Give each group one season picture (from Four seasons pictures). As a group they talk about the season and what is in the picture. Taking turns, they then ask and answer questions about the position of items and objects. For example:
    1. Where is the post box? It’s in between the house and the bus stop
    2. Where is the cat? She is sitting opposite the post box and next to the woman

(10 minutes)

  • Following a feedback session asking a couple of learners to share one of their questions and answers relating to their photo take the remaining time for learners to use the questions given to them on WhatsApp prior to the session, to steer their conversation.
    1. What is your favourite season and why do you like it?
    2. Tell us about the seasons in your country? Which months are they in?
    3. Which season is the best time for a tourist to visit your country? Why?

(5 minutes – this concludes a 75-minute lesson).

 

Have fun!