Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Activity Class Plan: Going Shopping

GOAL: To get students familiar with the numbers, basic math, and money

PRE-REQUISITES:
* Basic knowlege of numbers
* Probably best taught after the countables/uncountables and food classes

MATERIALS:
* Catalogues from a department store (Wal-Mart, Hi-Mart, Home Plus are all good)
* A couple of picture dictionaries

TARGET: Elementary school, Early Middle School

PLAN:
A) Make sure they know their numbers. Use whatever method works best for you.
B) Make sure they understand basic math. Go through addition and multiplication, since those will probably be most useful for this exercise. If they're advanced enough, talk about percent, and how it might apply to discounts. You can even mention the etymology of "cent" (100, from Middle French, Latin for "centum") and how it applies to things they already know (centimeter, cubic centimeter, centigrade (now celsius, 100 degrees is when water boils)). See if they can figure out a ten percent discount off a price.
C) Go through words related to shopping. "Shopping", "Buy", "Sell", "Cost", "Pay for", "Money", "Discount", "Sale", "Special", "Return", "Coin", "Bill", "Receipt", "Store", "Cash", "Counter", "Cash Register". You might want to give them a worksheet where they connect the word to its English or Korean definition.
D) Give them a template for a report about what they will be buying, and then divide the class into groups. Put an arbitrarily high number on the board, and tell the groups that they all have this much money, and they have to use it to buy items from the catalogues that you are going to give them. Whichever groups spends the closest to the total without going over wins.
E) The report should be of the format: "I went to [Hi Mart] to go shopping. At the store, I bought [5] [apples], [2] [boxes of crackers], etc. Everything that I bought cost [45000 Won]." You should use ground rules that put maximums on the amount that they can buy (no more than 10 of one item, for instance), and make sure that they translate every item that they've bought into English, or else it doesn't count for their total. Optionally, you can deduct points for spelling mistakes or grammar.
F) Summarize what they have learned for the day.

Friday, October 15, 2004

Countables / Uncountables Practice

GOAL: To have students differentiate between countables, uncountables, and the grammatical nuances of the way they are used in a sentence.

PRE-REQUISITES:
* Some familiarity with uncountable words, even if they don't actually know they're uncountable.

MATERIALS:
* A group of items normally used to measure uncountables (a cup, a plate, a spoon, a pot, a jug, etc.).

TARGET: Elementary/Middle School

PLAN:
A) Have the students understand the idea of countability. This is less difficult than it seems. Ask them if they understand: "1 apple. 2 apples. 3 apples." Then ask them if they understand "1 banana. 2 bananas. 3 bananas." Next, ask them if they understand: "1 water. 2 waters. 3 waters." This should get a laugh out of them, especially if you can do it in their language. Explain that some things can be counted and some cannot.
B) Next, draw up a list of countables. This should be straightforward. Try to avoid words that are capable of being both (pizza, cake, chicken, fish), and leave to the end words that are countable but don't pluralize normally (goose, foot, tooth, fish). Drill it into them the way that they'd use the words in various quantities.
C) Next, draw up a list of uncountables. Many kinds of food and drink are uncountable, so this might be an easier list than they'd expect. Go through and show how pluralizing these words makes no sense.
D) Next, show them some words that are both countable and uncountable. "Some pizzas" means several pizza pies, whereas "Some pizza" usually means several slices of pizza. Finally, talk about how certain things are still countable even if they don't pluralize with an 's' or 'es' (geese, oxen, etc.), or even if they don't change at all (sheep, deer, fish).
E) Now, they should be ready for a game of some sort. The one suggested here is the Animal Buzzer Guessing Game. Write sentences on the board that identify nouns in singular countable (eg: "It is a book."), singular uncountable (eg: "It is rice."), and plural countable (eg: "They are tomatoes."). Use these sentences as templates for the guessing game. Divide the class into teams, and have each team choose a student to be the buzzer (this position can rotate after each question). Assign an animal sound to each buzzer. Explain that you will describe something. When the students can guess what it is, they have to press on their buzzer's head. You will allow an attempt to guess from the team whose animal sound you first hear. The team then has to identify what you're describing using proper grammar. Example: You say, "This is cold and sweet. You put it on a cone." (Chicken buzzer sounds) "It is cake!" "Wrong." (Cow buzzer sounds) "It is a ice cream!" "Wrong." (Dog buzzer sounds) "It is ice cream." "Right." Continue for the desired length.
F) After the game, explain how even though you can't count uncountables, you can count units of uncountables. See if the students can identify the units for the various uncountables you've made, and how to properly use them (eg: "One glasses of water." "Three pieces of chicken."). Try to list various units (eg: cups, plates, pieces, pots, bowls, spoonfulls, jugs, etc.) and see if students can identify what sorts of food can be counted using that unit. For fun, include things like "A pinch of salt." You might want to bring the various containers to class to add a dimension to their understanding.
G) Summarize what they have learned for the day.

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Discussion Class Plan : Present Continuous Pictionary

GOAL: To help students get comfortable in the usage of the present continuous verb form.

PRE-REQUISITES:
* A familiarity with the 'be' verb.
* Some familiarity with different verbs in the english language.

MATERIALS:
* 20+ Verb flashcards (eg: Do, Go, Eat, Drink, Watch, Sleep, Ride, Walk, Run, Hit, Play, Study, Work, Read, Write, Listen, Make, Drive, Throw, Kick, Catch, Fight, Talk, Shout, etc.)
* 20+ Sentences using the above. ("He is going to school." "She is watching television." "He is eating a hamburger." etc.)
* A webpage filled with pictures showing people in the middle of some form of action.
* Some chalk for the students to write with.

TARGET: Advanced Elementary / Middle School

PLAN:
A) First, check that the students understand verbs and their importance in a sentence. Write some sentences and have them identify the verb (동사). Then, run through a conjugation of a couple of verbs, noting the change at third person singular. Finally, run through a conjugation of the 'be' verb.
B) Next, check that the students understand verbs in the present continuous form ('~ing', or ~고 있다). Run through a complete conjugation of a common verb ('go' is a good one). See if they can do it for various other verbs. If they're sufficiently advanced, use words that require a slight alteration when put into the '~ing' form (eg: run, hit).
C) Now, go through the flashcards and see if they can make sentences using those verbs in the present continuous. Do this quickly, as by now the students may become bored and restless if they think there's too much studying going on.
D) Finally, show them how to create questions for the present continuous form. This will be important for the upcoming game.
E) Divide the class into four teams. Have each team choose the best artist and the best English speaker. After the choices have been made by all the teams, tell them that the artists' job is to draw a picture based on a sentence that you show them (make sure the level of difficulty for the sentence is appropriate) but not anyone else in the group. Next, tell the teams that the job of the best English speaker is to NOT give the answer, but to help the other students in their team to answer. The team has a time limit to guess the artist's representation by asking the question that identifies the activity (eg: If the student is given the sentence "The girl is eating a hamburger.", the team wins if they ask "Is she eating a hamburger?" or something similar before time runs out). Expand this activity for as long as is necessary.
F) Next, show a webpage with some pictures of people in the middle of performing an action. Get class feedback to see if they can form a complete sentence describing the action in the present continuous form. For advanced students, you can try asking them to use adverbs and/or adjectives as well (eg: "He is running quickly." "The fat students are shouting angrily.").
G) Summarize what they have learned for the day.