IMPORTANT! Optimized for Firefox and Google Chrome. You may not be visualizing the entire blog if you are using Internet Explorer.
Feel free to send your ideas to my email: / To use the lesson plans in my blog, you do NOT need photocopies for students. You MAY need to print instructions or to use a projector and/or a computer.

Browse LABELS to the right, underneath to find prompts and tasks.New!! VIDEO BLOGS on English for Communications and on English for Office Applications (Computers). See links below.

* English for Communications. Click HERE. By Beatriz Papaseit Fernández and myself, María Zabala Peña

* English for Office Applications (Computers :Word 2007 and more). Click HERE. By Beatriz Papaseit Fernández and myself, María Zabala Peña

Sunday, February 28, 2010

5 quick games for vocabulary revision for current unit

Purpose: vocabulary revision for CURRENT UNIT

To see vocabulary revision for MORE THAN one unit, please click HERE

Any level but for some games students need to have practised techniques for categorising words (this is a verb, an adjective, this is a past simple...)

Timing: about 10 minutes

No material needed

A) Word telepathy

Have a volunteer sit at the front of the class with his/her back at the board. Write a word from the unit on the blackboard. The class must help the volunteer to identify the word. E.g. The word shoe. Student might say something similar to: you wear this on you feet, A boot/trainer is one type, you can buy this in Camper shop.

B) Sentence telepathy

The same as before but with a sentence. Review these basic categories before you do it: determinate/indeterminate article (a/an/some/the) as they need to use grammatical terms to help the volunteer. E.g. Maria is wearing a t-shirt (A girl in the class with short hair + verb to be + verb to have clothes on you body in the gerund+ indeterminate article+ Jordi Carlos is wearing this today).C)

C) Lip reading

Tell the student the category of the word (words related to hair, sport...). Ask the students to read your lips and say aloud the words you are saying.

D) Today’s question

The question is on board when students arrive. Best questions use current lesson grammar and vocabulary. If the question is about a grammar point you may allow the students to tell you the answer in their native language. Give the student who answer the question properly some reward (a positive point). E.g. Why are these sentence wrong?: * I wearing a jacket, * It rains now, *My fathers aren`t like Coke.

E) Stepping stones

Tell the students the vocabulary class of the exercise. E.g. FEAR. The first two rows of students are team A, next two B, next two C (or A and B if you have less students)

Draw this on the board:

TEAM A) o o o o

TEAM B) o o o o

Students need to cross a dangerous river stepping on the stones:the os.

Imagine the word to guess is SPIDER

The teacher writes S on the blackboard. Team A says one word from the lesson ( e.g. spider), if the word is spider the teacher checks meaning and puts an X on the stone .If it is not team A does not win the first stone. The teacher writes the next letter of the word SC. Team B says e.g. scare. If this correct the teacher checks meaning before giving the X. If the word is not scare the teacher writes next letter SCA etc. The word in this example is scar. The first team step on all the stones, wins.

F) Crazy eraser

To end the class on a high note and avoid misbehaviour, rub the board with the duster/eraser chopping of parts of the words. Students need to reconstruct what was written.

Source: MacMillan teacher training (Barcelona 2006?) Dave Spencer workshop: how to teach English in ESO without loosing your sanity.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Don't cry for me Argentina. Revision of present, past and future tenses

Purpose: fun review of present, past simple and future simple

You may just use part of the task depending on what you want to revise

Level: lower intermediate and upper

Language items: students need to know basic verbs in the present, past and future to say/write simple sentences in present, past and future.

Activity based on two YouTube videos with two different versions of the song: Don't cry for me Argentina


OPTION 1 : provided PowerPoint + Provided Teacher's pack (not really necessary as Power Point provides answers) + Internet Connection +  Projector

OPTION 2: if internet connection is not available in the classroom, you can download the videos from my site and watch them from your USB pen

This is the site (HERE)you can download the power point + teacher instructions + videos

DON'T FORGET THIS: you can watch the videos:


B) by downloading them from my site (see link above). Make sure you have current versions of REAL PLAYER, MEDIA PLAYER or VLC installed in your computer as these are MP4 videos.

C) by using the embedded version underneath (full screen not possible)
1. Preview of power point . This is a preview and therefore, links and transitions with mouse clicks won't work. To use this in class, download Power Point from my site. The link to my site is provided above.


Link to video 1: slower version of "Don't cry for me Argentina"

You can preview this video underneath

Link to video 2: Madonna's fast version of "Don't cry for me Argentina"
You can preview this video underneath

How to transform a PowerPoint into a video

In order to convert a Power Point into video, all you need is a small free program such a as E.M. Free PowerPoint Video Converter V2.80 (Freeware)
You can download it HERE
You will be converting your powerpoint online and therefore you need internet connection.
You may have to close all your programs for your converter to work.
Open the converter, select NEW TASK and choose the desired FORMAT (AVI , for example).
Make sure you tell the program where (what file) you want the result (the video) to be downloaded. This way you can locate your new file easily at the end of the process.