Using a teacher-made big book – post-reading

With this particular story the main aim was to recycle vocabulary for seasons, weather and clothes, as well as helping improve students’ reading skills.

Task 1

Before watching the final video clip from this lesson, think about suitable post-reading activities.

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  • Remembering
    • What clothes did he have in his luggage in England? Individual clothes flashcards are given to students, and the students hold up their cards when the teacher says a country.
    • Which countries did he visit? Take oral feedback from the whole class, or nominate individual students.
    • Where did he go in spring? Take oral feedback from the whole class, or nominate individual students. Ask the same question for other seasons.
  • Matching
    • Match countries to seasons. Write the names of the countries on the board, or use pictures from the story and select students to match the season flashcards with the correct countries.
  • Categorising
    • Which clothes for which seasons? Put season flashcards on the board, and select students to choose clothes flashcards and place with the appropriate season.
  • Sequencing
    • List the countries he visited in order. Use word or picture flashcards to put the countries in the correct order from the story.

These same types of activities can be used with many different stories.

Task 2

Watch the video and identify the activity.

  1. How did the teacher set it up?
  2. What are the advantages of using individual flashcards?
  3. If you didn’t have the flashcards, how could you do a similar activity?
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The activity is basically a categorising one – summer clothes/winter clothes.

  1. The teacher checked that the students knew which item of clothing they had before asking them to give the clothing for the season.
  2. By using the individual cards the teacher can check understanding of all students at a glance. Also students feel more involved in the lesson if they have something to hold that is linked to the activity. It does take time to make these materials, but they can be used in a variety of ways throughout the school year and colleagues can share.
  3. Students could be placed in four groups and each group given a season. Allow a few minutes for the groups to discuss the clothes for their given season and then take feedback from each group. This activity also has the advantage that the students are producing the language themselves.