The common rule that receptive vocabulary and ability is always greater than productive ability gives a simple guidance as to how lesson progression or sequencing of lessons should usually proceed-- from listening introductions in the beginning to free production as a final activity. Between these two will include:
- vocabulary and pattern practice (listening and repeating, choral repetition, TPR and other movement- and/or physical response-involved activities),
- Karuta and Listen, Repeat and Point, etc.,
- controlled conversations (pattern practice or substitution activities), like Interview Bingo and Get The Picture,
- some kind of ability checking or testing, like CROSSFIRE/LINEFIRE, Find 3 People and Tell the Teacher, volunteers demonstrating with the teacher before the activity, etc.,
- freer conversation activities, like Janken 4’s or Janken Conversations, Hot Potato, etc..
Use the following order of kinds of activities in your multi-activity lessons, or series of lessons, to build effective learning experiences. This is a general order with many kinds of activities; you probably won’t be able to do more than 3 or 5 in a 45 or 50 minute class. Still, following the order below should insure effective lesson planning.
Listening. Provide context for understanding. Use movement as much as possible--O/X games, responding by raising hands, holding up a colored pen, pointing to an image in the textbook or on a flashcard. See How to Introduce New Language for ideas.
Repeating. Choral repeating is less stressful (feels less like a test) to a student than being the only one repeating in front of the other students. (This is also a very convenient way to get a group of unfocused students to focus on the teacher and listen! OK you noisy rascals, ‘Listen and Repeat after ME!’)
Accuracy checking (testing in a playful or indirect way). See the post on Testing options.
Structured, controlled practice (with teacher-chosen structures, examples and vocabulary). This limits the opportunities for error production.
(More Accuracy Checking if needed).
Free Speaking activities. This meshes very well with LDK #9- Finish with a BANG!
See also the post Lesson Plan Patterns for more ideas on ordering lessons.
Go to the next post in the Lesson Development Keys series.