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Unit 10: Going shopping

Day two: What I need for school


  1. Students will talk about what they need for various school subjects.
  2. Students will hear about three students from the country where the target language is spoken.
  3. Students will be able to write the text of what they heard about the three students.
  4. Students will be able to write from memory a list of words or phrases that describe 10 different school items.

Setting the Stage (5-10 minutes)

Teacher has posted a variety of illustrations of school items on the front board. Teacher also has a variety of school items on a desk or table in the front of the room. Teacher talks about what he or she needs in the classroom for teaching, while pointing to the appropriate illustrations or items. As Teacher uses the expression, "I need" and "I don't need" Teacher writes down these two expressions and the translations as well. Teacher speaks only in the target language (TL) when referring to the various illustrations or items. Additional items not specifically mentioned in Day One's lesson can be:

  • Colored pencils
  • Colored markers
  • A compass
  • Liquid correction fluid
  • Masking tape
  • Transparent tape
  • Athletic uniform
  • Running shoes

Teacher then writes the question, "What do you need?" in the TL and the students' first language (L1) on the front board. Teacher can ask one of the stronger students that question or can use a hand puppet to "model" the conversation. The student or the puppet responds in the TL to Teacher's question. Teacher writes the response on the board. Then Teacher asks another student the question, "What do you need for math?" and writes the response on the board. Example: Mary needs a pen and a notebook for math.

Teacher asks the following questions to class as a whole and encourages all students to respond without waiting to be called on. Teacher writes the responses, both in the TL and in the L1, on the board: "What do you need for...  English?...  History?...  Gym or athletics?...  Social Science?...  Art?...  Music?..."

Input (20 minutes)

Teacher reads aloud, at normal speaking speed, three students' statements and asks students to write down all the words and phrases they understand from the reading. Use TL versions of statements similar to these:

  • "Hi, I'm (name of native speaker from a country that speaks the TL). You ask what kind of stuff I need for the beginning of school? Well, I've already bought a new backpack, some books and some clothes. I really needed a new pair of jeans and some shoes. Also, I bought some new tee-shirts."
  • "Hi, my name is (name of native speaker). For school, I had to buy two new 3-ring binders and note books. For several subjects, I had to buy some pencils, a ruler and a calculator for math. Oh, yes, I almost forgot…I bought a pack of 3-ring binder paper for my new binders. That's about it."
  • "Hi, I'm (name of native speaker) and I didn't buy much for school. I always buy new ball point pens, some notebooks, a couple of books, and a new school uniform, because last year's is too small now."

After Teacher has read once, he or she rereads, and students add more information to their list of words and phrases.

Guided Practice (10 minutes)

Students, in pairs, compare their lists and share words and phrases that one partner did not write down.

Teacher reads the three selections again.

Students get into groups of 6 and share their lists.

Independent Practice (15-20 minutes)

Students, working together with their groups of 6, rewrite the three selections, using their list of words and phrases, to the best of their recollection. One student in the group is chosen to write on a big piece of butcher paper with colored markers. One student is in charge of keeping track of the time. At the end of 10 minutes, all writing must stop! The other 4 students are responsible for providing the reconstructed text of the student statements that Teacher originally read to the class.

At the end of 10 minutes, students get up out of their seats, and compare their work with other groups in the class. Teacher walks around during this time and monitors student participation and comments on student work.

Evaluation and closure (5 minutes)

Teacher has spread 10 different school-supply items or pictures of such items on a table in the middle of the room. Teacher has covered these items with a large table cloth. Teacher informs students that they will have 2 minutes to memorize all the items on the table, then raises the tablecloth.

After the 2 minutes have elapsed, Teacher covers the table with the tablecloth again. Students then write down a list of all the items they remember. Teacher encourages students to include descriptive words of color and size in their list. Students turn in their written work to Teacher.

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