1. Target Group

1.1 Characteristics

This section describes some of the characteristics of Québec Francophone CEGEP students, and discusses learner variables and where this grammar unit fits in their language development.

The grammar unit is aimed at intermediate level, or advanced beginner CEGEP student whose mother tongue is French. These learners, ages 17-2, are in transition. Many are living away from home for the first time. Most are concerned with relationships and getting a job. The fields of interest are illustrated in Figure 1 below.

The classes vary from 10-30. Students are enrolled in academic and vocational, in roughly equal numbers. According to several teachers I spoke with the major obstacle with facing these learners is contact with the target language.

English departments are all working toward providing language in context of the variety of vocational programs, such as dental hygiene technician and paralegal secretaries. The Unit should attempt to address the student need for communication in their field.

I have chosen to work primarily with the course book Grammar Dimensions which is in use in CEGEP St- Hyacinth. This unit will be taught in one, three-hour period. The unit begins with seeing and listening activities that I have created, then proceed to speaking and writing, interspersed with form forcused presentations.

As a teacher it is important to know the social context of the target group. These youth are involved in a process of dramatic cultural and linguistic change, becoming bilingual, at the same time they are becoming adults. In the past six-months I spoke with several students and teachers in order to understand the interests of this group. My 15-year old daughter attends French high school and provides me with additional insight.

The classroom is the main social setting where students gain practice as English speakers. The schemata below represents my perception of how learning is situated in the world of the students. The classroom is represented by several circles. The teacher facilitates learning English by focusing on meaning and form. Major factors in the lives of students that influence their learning include their relationships with parents and peers, employment, use of drugs and alcohol etc. These factors probably effect behavior in the classroom and will provide meaningful content for learning.

The green bars represent major influences and opportunities for learning in the NeXt Classroom. Communications media, information and students careers will provide meaningful and comprehensible content in the classroom, and will hopefully become a major resource for learning of the out of school.

 

Figure 1: Fields of interest and the NeXt ESL Classroom.

 

1.2 Learning Outside the Classroom

Learners need the opportunity to hear the target language used in contexts which makes it meaningful and comprehensible (Krashen, 1982). Another important theory is that some aspects of language develop according to the learners' natural acquisition development agenda (Pienemann, 1984). I beleive therefore that increasing exposure to English outside the 90 hours CEGEP students spend in the ESL classroom is the most efficient way to accelerate language development.

People in the community that students know should be contacted to provide the learners with conversational practice. Where personal contact with native speakers is limited communications on-line can be promoted. E-mail exchanges with classmates and ESL/FSL learners worldwide will be organized. Internet-based communications media are popular with young people because they are new, a sign of status, but most importantly, they fulfill a need for social interaction. Written English that students produce in E-mail and chat is a cross between the oral and written forms, close to conversational English. English TV watching is accessible to all students. Students who include a popular TV series in their lives (e.g. Friends) develop proficiency more quickly (Doherty, personal conversation). World Wide Web databases are another significant source of comprehensible input for students outside the classroom. Reading text on the Internet is a very different form of interaction than watching TV, but similar in that there is a huge amount of content which is of interest to young people. Two hours per day interaction with these media will be encouraged.

For those who have chosen a career path, the ESL classroom will provide access to the language and the community of speakers they are joining. The Internet is revolutionary in the potential to connect students directly with current information and people in their fields. Some could even form a connection with the organizations where they hope to be working! As well, students in the NeXt Classroom gain experience in networking technologies which are becoming part of the workplace environment.

 

1.3 Course Plan

Class Activities 30 hours (46%)

Communication activities in the classroom will emphasize discourse, socio-cultural and strategic competence. In-class interactions will contain an implicit grammar dimension. Activities will include role plays, paired activities and emphasize listening, speaking and writing equally. Grammar in Action and similar resource books will be used. A portion of the classroom time will involve e-mail correspondence and chat with ESL/FSL students in similar fields. An on-line newsletter will feature stories produced by the class. .

 

Grammar Instruction 15 hours (23%)

Linguistic competence will be developed through implicit and explicit instruction on key grammar points based on student errors, sequence of learners' development and teacher intuition. Section 2 and 3 provide a detailed example of when and how instruction and practice work together. Workbook activities will be drawn from a number of sources including the popular Grammar Dimensions and Side By Side.

 

Student Productions 20 hours (31%)

Production work will be the homework activity. Students will work in pairs and meet four times with the instructor. Subject to the availability of resources, students will have three options:

a) Personal Web Page

This provides students with an on-line résumé that they can use for job seeking. They can include a biography, short stories, interviews, and pictures and artwork.


b) Career Database

Students create of a Web page that includes resources in their field of study and a glossary of domain specific vocabulary, phrases and grammar in the form of a gloassary.


c) Documentary (radio, tv, desktop, newspaper).

Depending on their interests and abilities students can produce a documentary report in English using available media. Students in this stream will learn basic form for story writing for print or broadcasting.

 

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2. Teaching Unit: Students' Guide to Industry

 

Note: This is a sample teaching unit for the NeXt Classroom. It could be chosen as the major production output, depending on the course and student interest. It may be adapted for many purposes. This unit is under construction. Any feedback is welcome.

 

Grade level: CEGEP Intermediate

Field of experience: Employment Readiness; Specialized Fields

Why did you select this field of experience?

Students need to become more knowledgeable of their chosen field of study and the types of business they seek to enter. Much general and specific information about any field of interest can be gathered by searching the Internet. By building a Website guide devoted to their field of future work students will provide their peers across the province information useful for planning their careers and demonstrating to prospective employers their ability to critically read, summarize and classify information. Students will determine needs, establish goals and objectives, and target audience.

Output: A web-based guide to specific vocational fields for students

Specific Objectives:

Students will be able to compile a list of 20 Websites containing information related to the field (i.e. plastic injection, dentistry, legal assistants) where they hope to work. Links must be organized by location, size, specialization. Students will produce a short summary describing each site they have included.

Students will be able to produce a quiz on words that appear to be of particular importance to this area of employment.

Students will write a description of new product they have developed by combining existing products and services that demonstrates their knowledge of the industry and clientele.

Students will produce a frequently asked questions (FAQ) page about the jobs and workplaces.

Students will be able to write an article that describes an entry-level job based on interviews with staff.

Students working in teams of 2-3 will be able to manage these Website projects through a series of formal planning meetings, the minutes of which are provided to the teacher as interim progress reports.

Students will be able to produce a Website guide for students like themselves. All the sub-projects above will be included on the Website. These will be promoted as a province-wide resource for CEGEP students.

Duration: Some or all of these activities would be completed during a 45 - hour course. Approximately 75% would be conducted during class time. The rest would be done on student's own time.

 

General Outline of the Unit

 

 Sequence  Task  Lesson

Group Discussion: Oral Interaction

 

HTML Editors: Writing computer code

 

Students' describe their field of study related to their program of study and local market. Brainstorm search terms for sample industry - healthcare.

Students assemble Webpages using editors (MSWORD, Netscape etc) featuring a digital self-portrait, drawing, and links.

 

 

Lesson: Web creation tools and design principles.

Radio ad: Writing & Oral Interaction Produce audio recording of inviting other CEGEP students to visit their website. See Assignment #1
(links to come)
Meeting Management: Reading and Oral Interaction Teams review procedures for conducting meetings (planning, reporting etc.).  
Categories of Web links: Reading and Writing Develop categories of Web sites for industry (e.g. healthcare) based on scrambled list of sites.

Vocabulary: Capitalization of categories, proper names

Grammar: Organization of a table of contents

Internet Searches: Vocabulary Development and Writing

Brainstorm type of information students need to know to understand the industry. Each student selects 10 websites and produces a review of the contents. Bookmark links. Reading web sites to identify devices used to impress consumers, clients, or other companies. Class develops criteria for inclusion.


Grammar: If you are looking for....

See Assignment #3
(links to come)

Industry Issues: Vocabulary Development & Writing Select newspaper or Web article about industry. Select authentic text. Students produce their quiz using Hot Potatoes, a Java-based quiz software.

Vocabulary: Create cloze quiz from text for classmates to complete.

See Assignment #4

Acronyms: Reading Students identify key Acronyms found in Websites, newspapers or magazines and create a list. Acronyms: recognizing and decoding.
 
Questionnaire: Writing Identify critical issues to use in quiz about the industry.

Grammar: Question forms

Questionnaire item construction. Vocabulary:

E-mail: Writing

 

Phone: Writing & oral interaction.

 

 

Writing e-mail to gather specific information from companies and organizations about study fields.

Develop and conduct phone interview with companies answering specific questions about entry-level jobs of interest to students. Students transcribe interviews and present their findings to the class.


Grammar: Question formsQuestionnaire item construction.

 

Grammar: E-mail introduction, question forms, requests, thank you.

Crazy New Product: Writing & oral production

 

Students write a humorous description of new product they have developed by combining two existing products and services. List five reasons why consumers will buy this product. i.e. Carjack with built-in light.

 

Grammar: Could/would , that phrases
Treasure Hunt: Reading & Writing Students produce a list of images or pieces of information to locate on the Web related to the industry/field. Grammar: Imperative verbs, giving directions
Frequently Asked Questions: Writing Students will produce a frequently asked questions (FAQ) page for newcomers to the industry. Grammar: Question forms.
Article on Joining Industry: Writing Each student will produce 500 word essay on the things to consider when entering this field. Grammar: Essay/Paragraph structure.

 

 

Development of the final project (output):

The students have lots of materials to include in an on-line guide for newcomers to the industry. The page could contain the essay, FAQ, list of acronyms, annotated list of links, audio clip and feedback. Depending on the availability of hardware and the ability of the students, pages can be very simple or complex. The pages can be stored on the class computer, school Web server or an Internet service provider. Ideally the pages should be posted so that students at other schools across Quebec can visit the site. The teacher can promote the Websites to the other ESL departments.

 

 

3. Analysis of the Present Continuous Structure

 

This is not an exhaustive examination of the present continuous but a review of the relevant research and theories related to grammar teaching, sequencing issues and relevant factors.

3.1 Objectives of the Unit:

3.2 Approach to Grammar Teaching

Current thinking about teach communicative approach that grammar has it's place in the ESL classroom.

Accuracy, fluency and overall communicative skills are probably best developed through instruction that is primarily meaning-based but in which guidance is provided through timely form-focused activities and correction in context".
(p. 443 Lightbown and Spada, 1990).

Other researchers have concluded that some focus on form can speed up the rate of development for the low frequency or limited saliency of certain linguistic features in the target language (Long, 1988).

In the post-methods age, ESL teachers develop strategies to teaching language that is both direct and indirect (or explicit or implicit). In consideration of the research which follows I have decided that I will develop a activities of varying length, interspersed with discrete grammar lessons or exercises that focus on form. Approximately 30% of the time spent in the NeXt classroom will focus on grammar. This is a quarter of the student's combined time in the classroom and working on their productions.

Early research by Lightbown led her to hypothesize that "practice of correct forms be replaced by a greater emphasis on providing learners with a variety of language in meaningful and motivating context". (1985 p. 103). This view was closely related to Krashen's "affective filter" hypothesis that suggests we pay close attention to how (what Pienemann calls "teaching methods") teachers counter boredom and other feelings that could block participation in the target language.

Since then Lightbowns's research of classroom interaction observations revealed success in teaching preferred introducer type ( e.g. There is, It's etc. ) She found that the preferred form occurred in the classroom with the teacher that focused most on matters of grammar, vocabulary, and usage. In these communicative classrooms, the teacher devoted less than 30% of her time "drawing students' attention to matters of grammar, vocabulary, or usage" (1991, p. 206). The teacher actually used the words "drummed it into their little heads" (ibid. p.207) to describe how hard she worked on the particular grammar point. This example seems to support Pienemann's teachability hypothesis that says some language structures can be taught at any time and others should follow in the order in which they have been observed to have been naturally acquired (Peinemann as cited in Lightbown, 1985).

Another theory underpins my approach. Language needs to be practiced at levels just above one's current level because learners may not have access to it outside the classroom, keeping in mind that it is not helpful to exceed greatly the zone of proximal learning (Pienemann, 1985).

Since we still don't know the order or how language structures are acquired outside the classroom-setting, I believe we sequence grammar instruction according to the immediate needs of the learners. Some of this is evident through error correction, but some is predicted, based on experience with the learner group. I will probably rely on colleagues to share their experience concerning sequencing.

As a strategy for how I design this grammar unit I have adopted Nunan's principles (1998):

1. Teach languages as a set of choices
 
2. Provide opportunities for learners to explore grammatical and discoursal relationships in authentic data.
 
3. Teaching language in ways which make form/function relationships transparent
 
4. Encourage learners to become active explorers of language.
 
5. Encourage learners to explore relationships between grammar and discourse.

 

3.3 Sequencing of Grammar

My understanding of the stage of development of the learners is based on three classroom observations and a review of several intermediate level course books and course plans. According to Scarcelle and Oxford, the Intermediate or Level II students should know the following:

Basic sentence structures, filler subjects (it and there), adverbs, prepositions, articles, quantifiers (such as some, many) proper and common nouns, noncount nouns, count nouns, pronouns, verb tense (present/past, present perfect/present continuous), coordination, subordination, modal auxiliaries (can, may, must, will and would, two/three word verbs, Mass and count nouns, plural forms, modal auxiliaries, subordination, complementizers, pronoun reference, two and three word verbs, subject/verb agreement, passives, causative, conditional clauses, and relative clauses. (p. 175)

In Beginner or Level 1 courses the present perfect and continuous forms are introduced in the mid or latter part (Berish & Thibaudeau, 1995, Larsen-Freeman, 1997, Jones L., 1992)). It does however appear near the beginning of a course book specifically tailored for CEGEP's called English Café.

The present continuous appears to be a major review item in Level II, appearing in the beginning of the popular Side By Side Book Two (Bliss & Molinsky, 1991), Grammar Dimensions 2 (Larsen-Freemen, D. 1997) and Grammar in Use (Murphy, R., 1989).

The Simple Present Tense is often reviewed before the Present Continuous.

The Present Perfect Continuous, Present Perfect, and the use of since and for, often follows this unit.

Based on these course books I would therefore expect to teach the present continuous sometime at the middle or end of the beginners and in the first weeks of the intermediate level courses.

3.4 Learner Variables

The present continuous form is often used in English speech and is a continuing problem for Francophones' learning English according to Cathy Beauchamp (personal communication). It is taught or reviewed in most courses. This Unit assumes that for most students this is a review.

The following discussion of the variables or factors illuminates how grammar instruction is provided specifically for this group.

3.4.1 Stage of Development

Learning of the continuous - ing form may follow the "u-shaped development " phenomenon. Learners who had correctly inflected verbs with the continuous -ing began producing verbs with no inflections (Lightbown, 1982, 1983a,b) Then, after a period, the correct use of -ing increased slowly. Lighbown agues that introducing the verb form too early, a form that would be expected to come later in a "natural sequence", could slow down development. While this suggests this item should be taught earlier, I feel it should be taught early, as it is immediately useful irregardless of the effect of the u-shaped development phenomenon. Some of the students are at the stage where they will retain the form.

3.4.2 Motivation

Most students at the intermediate level are considered by CEGEP teachers to be motivated both for immediate marks and long term for developing proficiency. At the age of 18, students have realized that English is their ticket to becoming employable in a difficult job market. The business community is demanding fully bi-lingual graduates and students understand that extra effort is required on their part to master English for the workplace. In order to maximize the potential for student engagement in learning grammar points this grammar unit will be integrated with students' current out of school or career interests.

3.4.3 Learning Style

The distinctions between types of learners, or cognitive styles, suggests that an approach that varies the kind of input (visual, audio, and tactile) within the unit will help the maximum number of learners. Both inductive and deductive methods of presentation will be used, however because their relatively extensive knowledge of grammar rules in their first language French, stating rules with this group will be expected and probably more efficient for many analytical thinkers. According to researchers so called" field dependent" people learn material with social content better (Witken, Moore, Goodenough and Cox, as cited by Jamieson, 1992.). The so-called "field independent" people or analytic thinkers, are going to learn with or without the social content and in some cases prefer learning rules.

3.4.4 Form is/have + ing

stative verbs are exceptions

The present continuous is often formed with the verb to be and the -ing aspect. For example, I am eating. It is understood as an action that is happening now and is continuing on. A time line is a useful metaphor for visual learners.

The continuous form with the action verbs are straight forward and easy to recognize and produce.

Stative verbs (non-action) that can't take the -ing form include believe, know, hate, hear, like love, need, see, seem, understand, and want. These could be confused with the present simple. These exceptions should be explicitly taught.

3.5.5 Function

This form is used when speaking/writing reporting activity at the time, of speaking, around the time of speaking, daily routines, and temporary situations. Native speakers use the present continuous very often in the course of a day without conscious effort. Present continuous is often taught in conjunction to the simple present, because they are very similar concepts of time and speakers shift from present simple to present continuous in the same discourse.

A functional or formulatic approach to learning to use this tense would be to provide learners many stock phases or lexical phrases ( (Nattinger and DeCarrico, 1992) that they could use e.g. I am having fun, I am taking a course etc. This would provide students with chunks of language that they can retrieve. Exercises could be re-written to provided phrases that students could use.

3.5.6 Meaning

The tense signals that the action is going on now, and continues. The example of "Tom smokes" and "Tom is smoking" illustrates the difference in the present and present continuous. One suggests a habit, the other an observed event, that could be temporary. The difference in meaning is subtle and requires some consideration of the context, therefore this form may be better understood in larger chunks of language. The +ing marker will probably help students identify present continuous tenses which will help them understand the meaning.

3.5.7 Appropriacy

This form is used in all types of discourse. The social context of this form is not of great concern compared to others. It is appropriate to use the form in most conversations, with most types of relationships. It is a very appropriate form for writing news reports and for broadcasting because it captures the immediacy of actions.

3.5.8 Pronunciation

The inflection for ing is important

The contraction of the auxiliary verb as in I'm, He's It's are used in forming the present continuous is hard to hear. The w sound of ing needs to be taught as in going (go-wing).

3.5.9 Spelling

The spelling of ing words is fairly easy but the rules must be taught. Words ending with e, drop the e before adding ing. Verbs ending with a single vowel or a consonant, Double final letter, add ing.

3.5.10 Collocation

Collocation is not an important factor in this form.

3.5.11 Inter-related Grammar points

The Unit on the present continuous can also include present simple, prepositions, negatives and the question form. There are subtle differences with other continuous tenses (i.e. are going, have been, and Is being) that can be confusing.

"Have" can be used in the present continuous which students will find irresistible to use. I am having fun. She is having lunch with a friend. Are we having a picnic today? This form of have may confuse some Francophone students who use have in place of avoir.

The verb to be is a key grammar point for Francophones because of the tendency to mix auxiliary verb to be with the to have. Lighbown found many students said "you have" instead of "you are", there is, and It is (1991). Teaching the present continuous therefore will help re-enforce the use of to be in general and It is in particular. Students should be shown that it is much better to say to say. It's raining instead of We are having a rain shower and "You are eating", instead of "You have eating".

3.6 Instructors Role:

The role of the teacher is to model academic and professional English language communication. This is not to produce "modeled language", but professional and academic language that is "stolen" up from the teacher. The teacher should be proficient in the technical vocabulary related to students' future careers.

 

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4. Grammar Unit: Procedure

 

4.1 Warm-Up 1: 3 minutes

Go around the room with these large pictures and ask students to tell the class what people are doing. What else is happening? (Click on images above if your wish to see in full size). This will elicit many examples of the present continuous. Write theses verbs on the board. Don't discuss the grammar.

Rationale: The pre-activity is designed to stimulate the visual senses, triggering the words and tense automatically.

 

4.2 Warm-Up 2 : Listening 5 minutes

I tell a story about an imaginary flight in a helicopter. Students are asked to close their eyes and imagine this is happening right now. I play an audio cassette recording of a helicopter and tell the following story.

"You are hitch hiking to Montreal when a helicopter flies by. There is someone waving to you. You are wave back. The pilot is now turning the helicopter around and he is descending onto the highway. Fortunately there are no cars coming. The pilot is signaling to you to come over. You are running to the helicopter crouching down and watching to see that the propeller does not hit you. He opens the door and asks you if you are interested in going to Montreal. You say, sure. You are now flying in the direction of Montreal when you notice some liquid leaking over the window. Pointing to the leak, you tell the pilot that something is happening. A shocked look comes over his face and he is flying the chopper down as quickly as possible....... (continues). The story ends with you as the hero.

Rationale: The story telling format is one of the most natural for first and second language learners. It is noticibly absent from the literature but the evaluation by Lighbown on a comprehesion based ESL program in New Brunswick suggests that more can be learnbed from listening to stories than we think (1991).

 

4.3 Instruction on Structure, 2 minutes

Present and discuss the context and meaning of the present continuous compared to the present simple. The present continuous indicates actions that are happening at the moment of speaking. The actions began in the past, are in progress and probably continue into the future. The present continuous is formed by the combining the simple present of the verb be with the verb ending in -ing.

 

4.4 Activity 1: Charades, 10 minutes

1. The class divides itself in half.

2. Each students writes a sentence in present continuous form on a piece of paper. e.g. He is washing the dishes.

3. Group A puts the sentences in a hat for Group B. A student from Group B removes one sentence and acts out the sentence for his or her group. The students in Group B have 30 seconds to guess the action. They get one point if they guess the action correctly within the time limit.

4. The other group does the same thing.

(adapted from Grammar Connections 1: p. 158

 

Rationale: This activity gets students out of their chairs early in the morning (assuming a morning class) to play a game with which most are familiar. This allows the students a chance to practice the form in a fun and engaging way.

 

4.5 Activity Two: Without Blinking, 3-5 minutes

Pair work. First ask the class to list some preposition (in, of , for, to, without, after, in, by, about). Highlight those in bold. those in bold. First ask if the students can keep their eyes open without blinking - get them to try!. Then divide the class into pairs (or groups of three). When they have completed the sentences, makes sure there's time for them to join another pair and ask questions. They must make up questions that begin with Can you.... Are you ... The funnier or more challenging the better

examples:

Can you touch your toes without bending your knees?

Can you stop hiccups by holding your breath?

Can you stand on one leg for 60 seconds without loosing your balance.

(adapted from Communicative Grammar Practice p. 569)

Rationale: This is a slightly more challenging game that requires some more creative thinking and will ellicit new forms of the present continuous.

 

----------------- Break --------------------

 

4.6 Instruction 2, 3 minutes

I will draw the time-line schematic and guide the class in a discussion of the past, present and future tenses. This device is used consistantly within the program.

Introduce the stative verbs.

 

4.7 Activity 3: But phrases, 10 minutes

Complete each of the 11 complex sentences below by adding the phrase in the simple present or progressive. Use but to connect the two phrases. Tell student to be sure to use the correct time expression in their answers. Have students swap with their partner and go around the class reading answers. (Exercise # 8, from Grammar Dimensions I p 114)

Rationale: This individual activity is somewhat more challenging and provides individuals a chance to concentrate on their own efforts. I may re-write these items using more relevant examples.

1. I usually go to school, but today I'm shoveling snow.

2. I'm usually in math class right now, ______________________________.

3. _______________________ today he's putting up the Christmas lights.

4. Mom rarely makes cookies, ____________________________________.
______________________.

5. ____________________________________ now she isn't at her boyfriend's house she's
talking to him on the phone.

6. Ricky usually takes a nap, ______________________________________.

7. ____________________________________ at the moment he's eating cookies.

8. _____________________________, at present they are arguing over a decoration

9. Mom usually takes care of Ricky during the day __________________________.

10. Dad usually helps me shovel the snow, ________________________________.

11. Tito usually eats healthy food, _______________________________________.

 

4.8 Activity 4: Paired activity, 15 minutes

Ask students to Choose appropriate verb and write a question for each set of words. Ask students to ask their partner the questions and record his or her short answers.

(Exercise # 11, from Grammar Dimensions I, p. 116)

Example: You/other classes

a: Are you taking other classes?

b: Yes, I am

1. You / this class

2. Your English / better

3. You / your classmates

4. You / English at home

5. You / English grammar

6. English grammar / easier

7. You / good day

8. I / questions correctly

9. You mother / in the United States

10. I / clearly

Rationale: This exercise provides practice in the question form and the present continuous.

 

4.9 Activity 5: Interviews, 15-20 minutes

This is a more advanced game where students interview one another to find people who are doing the things on the list, then produce a report. It should be used if the group is still getting to know one another and there is time. Allow 15 minutes.

( from Grammar Dimension II, Activity 5, p. 32)

Step 1: Ask students to go around the classroom and try to find a different person for each of the situations in the chart. Write the person's name in the box marked Name and add more information in the box marked Information. We have given some suggestions here, but you probably have more ideal of your own.

 Situation  Name  Information
 ...is reading a book in English    Title? His/Her opinion?
 ...regularly reads newspaper from his/her country    Why?
 ...has moe than $10 in cash with him/her right now    Any money from his/her country too?
 ...reads more than one book a month (in any language)    Favorite books?
 ...is boarding with a family    Who? Where?
 ...usually goes to the movies several times a months    How often? Favorite movie?
 ...is wearing an article of clothing made in the U.S.A.    Describe it
 regularly plays a musical instrument    What kind? How often?
 ...is wearing perfume or cologne at the moment    What kind? Describe it.
 ..has a pet    What kind? How old?

Step 2: Ask students to look at all the information that you collected. Choose three or four of the most interesting or surprising things that you learned about your classmates and write about this information. Remember to include an introduction. For example: I interviewed some of my classmates and I learned several things about them. First, I learned that Maria likes to read; in fact, she is reading a book in English that she is enjoying very much...

Students read their report to a partner. Ask your partner to tell you how many examples of the simple present and the present continuous are in your report.

Rationale: This research and reporting exercise provides a chance to explore and practice the form as part of discourse.

 

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4.10 Activity 6: E-Mail, 30- 60 minutes

Option 1: Students go to the computers to write an e-mail message to everyone on their list describing activities that are happening at the College this week, what other people are doing, and the students feelings about what is going on. In their message they must ask every one to respond to a couple of questions about what is happening to them. They may send the same message to everyone, but encourage students to personalize some messages. Ask the students to c.c. at least one of their outgoing and incoming messages to you as evidence that they have participated in the activity.

Option 2: Students that have career connections established people working in their field of study may work on a description of one a project in another course.

Rationale: This is a communicative activity that is extends the classroom to cyberspace and the rest of the world. It is likely to result in practice using the target forms, although this is not absolutely essential.

 

4. 11 Activity 7: Student Productions, 60 minutes

Students can use any free time to work on material for their productions.

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5. References

 

Berish, L. & Thibaudeau, S. 1995 Grammar Connections 1, Printice Hall, Ont.

Brown, C., Ritter, J. & Wholey, M. 1997. English Café: An Interactive Approach to Learning English. International Thomson. Toronto.

Brian Doherty. Program Coordinator, ESL Department, CEGEP St- Hyacinth.

Jamieson, J. 1992. The cognitive styles of reflection/impassivity and field independence and field dependence and ESL success. Modern Language Journal, 76, 491-501.

Jones, L. 1992. Communicative Grammar Practice: Teachers Manual. Cambridge University Press.

Krashen, S. 1982. Principles and Practice in Second Language Acquisition. Oxford: Pergamon Institute of English.

Long, M. 1998. Instructed Interlanguage Development . In L. Beebe (Ed.) Issues in second language acquisition: Multiple perspectives (pp. 115-141). New York: Newbury House.

Larsen-Freeman, D 1997. Grammar Dimensions Wookbook 1, Heinle & Heinle Publishers, US.

Larsen-Freeman, D 1997. Grammar Dimensions 2 Course Book, Heinle & Heinle Publishers, US.

Larsen-Freeman, D 1997. Grammar Dimensions Wookbook 2, Heinle & Heinle Publishers, US.

Lightbown, P. (1985). Can language acquisition be altered by instruction? In K.Hyltenstam & M. Pienemann (Eds.). Modeling and assessing second language acquisition. Clevedon, UK. : Multilingual Matters.

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