Thursday, January 1, 2009

An Interesting Writing Activity

A big challenge that I have with the low-level students that I teach is working on their writing. If I had to pick their major area of weakness, among reading, writing, listening, speaking and grammar, I'd have to pick writing. So I always try to think of ways to work on in a way that doesn't require me personally checking or reading everything they write. I only have 90 minutes/week or in class time and 8 or 9 classes of over 20 students, so there just isn't really time for an in-depth analysis. And I also want it to be interactive and fun for the students as well. So I came up with this activity that ended up being really fun, even more so than I thought.

I got the students to spend about 5 minutes writing 3 (for the very weak students!) to 5 (the better students) sentences about an interesting, exciting, or scary experience they've had. Then, I put them into groups of 4 and they had to trade papers and write one question. Then they trade 2 more times so they've read all the papers and asked one question for each paper. Then, the student answers the three questions, in writing and I'll do a quick check and if it's at the end of the class, I'll let them go home. The weaker students will require much longer but I'll be able to help them because most of the students will have already gone.

With the better classes, who are not resistant to speaking in English, I'll do this as a walking around, finding a partner and then asking and answering a question about the story they just read. And then they can have a mini-conversation hopefully.

1 comment:

jeff said...

Gookland is useless now that the won has tanked . WE are all better going to the middle east or Japan where the money is stronger and people are civilized