The Rewards of Shopping for Fashion From A Dump

“I used to be ashamed of my secret. But I’m ready to come clean…When I was a fledgling fashion editor, living broke in New York, the dump was my secret.” V. Hyland, The New York Times, May 4, 2022

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this post with Answer Key

Credit- Illustration by Dana Robinson

 

Excerpt: I’m a Fashion Editor, and I Shop at the Dump, By Véronique Hyland, The New York Times, May 4, 2022

“Or at least, it was a secret in New York. On the summer trips I made to small-town Massachusetts, the dump there was an agora of junk, a festival of refuse — the local newspaper listed what was new and hot, and people gathered just to gossip and shoot the breeze. I’ve never been bold enough to fish directly from the dump’s central piles of rusted castoffs.

But its Swap Shop — a tiny cottage — had come to serve as a free boutique of sorts, and there I discovered many items of weird delight, including a pair of sky blue clogs that could pass for Rachel Comey, and a circa-1970s Gucci scarf, patterned with leaping zebras, that earned me compliments at Paris Fashion Week…I loved the Swap Shop, and not only because everything was free. When I walked into curated, antiseptic boutiques, I felt starved for novelty…As the years went by, and the 1 percent inched closer to making up 100 percent of the town’s population, the summer people began to drop off some jarringly pristine items. I’ve dug out perfectly wearable A.P.C. sweaters and COS shirts, and a family friend told me about finding a Ferragamo bag with leftover cash inside it…Making new things out of others’ castoffs is something small-town America has done for decades, in a sort of municipal precursor to Free cycle or Buy Nothing groups. The importance of sharing resources became increasingly clear as the Covid-19 pandemic raged. For more and more people, getting free stuff from neighbors went from being a quirk, or a fun excuse for a day’s outing, to being a necessary form of mutual aid.”

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this post

NOTE: Lessons can also be used with native English speakers.

Level: Intermediate – Advanced


Language Skills: Reading, writing, and speaking. Vocabulary and grammar activities are included.


Time: Approximately 60 minutes.


Materials: Student handout (from this lesson) and access to news article.


Objective: Students will read and discuss the article
with a focus on improving reading comprehension and improving oral skills. At the end of the lesson students will express their personal views on the topic through group work and writing.

 Predictions: Using a Pre-reading Organizer

Directions: Examine the title of the post and of the actual article. Next examine  any photos. Write a paragraph describing what you think this article will discuss. A pre-reading organizer may be used.

Pre-reading chart by J. Swann

 

II. While Reading Activities

Word Inference

Directions: Try to infer the meanings of the words in bold taken from the article. You use a dictionary, thesaurus, and Word Chart for assistance.

  1. I used to be ashamed of my secret. But I’m ready to come clean.
  2. The tag dated  the garment to the last millennium.
  3. Extravagantly sturdy, it had the air of what magazines might call an investment piece.
  4. My friend sitting next to me at a New York Fashion Week event inquired about its provenance.
  5. My coat was from the dump.
  6. When I was a fledgling fashion editor, the dump was my secret.
  7. I’ve never been bold enough to fish directly from the dump’s central piles of rusted castoffs.
  8. Luxury brands that once destroyed unsold merchandise are now thinking of ways to reinvent it.
  9. I began thrifting and scrounging my way to some semblance of personal style.
  10. Salvage and resale have become antidotes to the conveyor belt of fast fashion.

 

Grammar Focus: Word -Recognition

Directions: Students choose the correct word to complete the sentences taken from the article. They are to choose from the options presented.

When I began thrifting/thrift and scrounging mine/my way to some semblance of personnel/personal style, there/their was/were still something shameful about admit/admitting that your/you’re clothes has/had a past/pass, unknowable-to-you life. Ive/I’ve spent/spend a decade and a half covering fashion.

 

Reading Comprehension Fill-ins

Directions: Place students in groups and after they have read the entire article, have them complete the following sentences  taken from the article. They can use the words and terms from the list provided, or provide their own terms. They are to find the meanings of any new vocabulary.

(I’m Elle’s fashion features ___now), and ___that time I’ve seen the___ awakening to sustainability and reuse. ___brands that once ___and even___unsold ___are now thinking of ways to ___it.

WORD LIST: reinvent, merchandise, burned, destroyed, Luxury,  over, industry, director

 

Discussion Questions for Comprehension /Writing

Directions: Have  students discuss the following questions/statements. Afterwards,  students share their thoughts as a class. To reinforce the ideas, students can write an essay on one of the topics mentioned.

  1. Have you ever looked for clothes in a dumpster? If yes, did you find any good items?
  2. Make a list of questions that you would like to ask the author.
  3. List three new ideas  that you’ve learned about the topic from the reading,  two things that you did not understand in the reading, and one thing you  would like to know that the article did not mention.  Share your responses with your class.

ANSWER KEY

Back at Work After the Pandemic: How to Handle Annoying Office Colleagues

“After two years of working from home during the pandemic, and plenty of false starts, employees are officially heading back to work…The gossip, the loud talker and the nosy colleague are all manageable with the right mind-set.”J. Dunn, The New York Times, April 24, 2022

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this post with Answer Key

image The New York Times

 

Excerpt: Your Office Is More Annoying Than You Remembered. Here’s How to Handle It.  By Jancee Dunn, The New York Times, April 24, 2022

“Roughly 60 percent of U.S. workers who could work from home were still signing in remotely as of January, according to a survey by the Pew Research Center, as the Omicron variant of the coronavirus set back [return to office] R.T.O. plans.

But now companies like Google are insisting that their workers return to the office on hybrid work schedules.

For many workers, the commuter train has already left the station. And after controlling our own environment at home, returning to work means we’ll be faced with annoying behaviors among our colleagues again: loud talkers, nosy cubicle mates, the olfactory emanations of the shared microwave.

Image: The New York Times

How do we confront these people — and how do we check our emotions, which may be in overdrive after working in relative isolation, to keep ourselves from snapping?

Consider this a fresh start for everybody, said Darian Lewis, who, with his wife, Monica, founded the Monica Lewis School of Etiquette in Houston. ‘You know all those things you wanted to change in your workplace prior to the pandemic, but you just couldn’t figure out how to do it?’ he said. “Well, seize the opportunity right now.’

Here’s how to deal quickly and effectively with some of the most irritating workplace habits.

The Loud Talker If your attention is consistently being pulled away by a colleague’s loud chatter, Mr. Lewis said, take a deep breath and approach the person, using what he calls the ‘S.E.C.’rule: smile, maintain eye contact and remain calm… The Gossip ‘Gossip is what we would call ‘harmful speech,’ said Mr. Miglioli, the Buddhist priest… The Nosy Cubicle Mate When your overly inquisitive co-worker begins to dig, ‘find a mantra, and then be a broken record,’ suggested Ms. Pollak, the workplace expert…One of the takeaways of the pandemic is that communities survive better than individuals.

Image- The New York Times

As we all return to the workplace, Mr. Miglioli said, we have two choices. ‘One way is to disconnect as soon as possible with all that has happened and get back to your life’…“The other is to embrace the pandemic as a great teacher.”

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this post

NOTE: Lessons can also be used with native English speakers.

Level: Intermediate – Advanced


Language Skills: Reading, writing, and speaking. Vocabulary and grammar activities are included.


Time: Approximately 60 minutes.


Materials: Student handout (from this lesson) and access to news article.


Objective: Students will read and discuss the article
with a focus on improving reading comprehension and improving oral skills. At the end of the lesson students will express their personal views on the topic through group work and writing.

I. Pre-Reading Activities

 Predictions: Analyzing headings and photos

Directions: Examine the titles of the post and of the actual article.  Examine any photos, then create a list of  words and  ideas  that you  and your group members think might be related to this article. 

II. While Reading Activities

Word Inference

Directions: Try to infer the meanings of the words in bold taken from the article. You use a dictionary, thesaurus, and Word Chart for assistance.

  1. Workers return to the loud talkers, nosy cubicle mates and the olfactory emanations of the shared microwave.
  2. How do we confront these annoying people?
  3. More importantly, how do we check our emotions, which may be in overdrive after working in isolation?
  4. The article teaches you how to handle unpleasant situations at work.
  5. The gossip, the loud talker and the nosy colleague are all manageable.
  6. There are three things to keep in mind when you’re getting back in the groove.
  7. There’s actually a big difference between responding and reaction.
  8. That pause will give you a chance to choose your battles.
  9. Try to exercise tolerance.
  10. One of the takeaways of the pandemic is that communities survive better than individuals.

Grammar Focus: Word -Recognition

Directions: Students choose the correct word to complete the sentences taken from the article. They are to choose from the options presented.

For many worker/workers, the commuter train/trainshas/have already leave/left the station. And after controlling our own/owner environment in/at home, returning too/to work means/meanwe’ll/well be faced with annoy/annoying behaviors among our colleague/colleagues again: loud talkers, nosy cubicle mates, the olfactory emanations of/off the shared microwave.

 

Reading Comprehension

Reading Comprehension: Identify The  Speakers

Directions: Read the following quotes from the speakers in the article. Then identify the speakers.

  1. “You know all those things you wanted to change in your workplace prior to the pandemic, but you just couldn’t figure out how to do it? Well, seize the opportunity right now.”
  2. “There are three things to keep in mind when you’re getting back in the groove. Acknowledge that we are out of shape dealing with other people. Lower your expectations and assume that you’re going to have some annoyances. And really give thought to the new habits that you want to create from Day 1, and be deliberate about making changes now.”
  3. “There’s actually a big difference between responding and reaction. What I do is pause, breathe and connect with the present moment.”

 

Discussion Questions for Comprehension /Writing

Directions: Have  students discuss the following questions/statements. Afterwards,  students share their thoughts as a class. To reinforce the ideas, students can write an essay on one of the topics mentioned.

  1. Have you been back to work since the pandemic ended?
  2. Describe your reactions on the first day in the office.
  3. If you don’t work in an office, how did you feel on your first day back at school?
  4. What advice does author Lindsey Pollack offer for those going back to work?
  5. What are some of the characteristics listed as being annoying? Give a brief description of each.
  6. How does Mr. Lewis advise handling a person who talks loudly?
  7. What is an important lesson concerning communities  that we’ve learned from the pandemic?
  8. List three new ideas  that you’ve learned about the topic from the reading,  two things that you did not understand in the reading, and one thing you  would like to know that the article did not mention.  Share your responses with your class.

ANSWER KEY

How To Raise A Resilient Child

“Never has resilience — be it physical, mental, emotional or financial — been more important to our society than in the past year and a half, and never have I been so determined to pass it on to my son.” E. VanceThe New York Times, September 21, 2021

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this post with Answer Key

Raising Resilient Kids Who Are Prepared for the Future-Child Mind Institute

Excerpt: The Secret to Raising a Resilient Kid, By Erik Vance, The New York Times, Sept. 14, 2021

Credit- Joao Fazenda NYT

 

“In my early teens, my dad took myself, my best friend and our neighbor on a grueling backpacking trip connecting California’s Yosemite Valley to Half Dome to nearby Clouds Rest mountain and back again. By the second day — halfway up Clouds Rest, on wobbly legs and besieged by mosquitoes — we finally mutinied. The three of us made it clear to my father that we were done. Nobody had heard of Clouds Rest and nobody had the juice to see the top.

‘OK, I understand,’ I remember Dad saying. ‘You guys stay here. Erik, let’s go.’

There was no point arguing. Even today, my only memory of the top of Clouds Rest is the blue sky I saw flat on my back, panting and praying for a speedy death.

Later, of course, I described the hike as an epic victory of teenager over nature. Which, I suspect, is why my dad pushed me to do it. Whether he knew it or not, Dad was a big believer in the concept of resilience, the ability to engage with a challenge, risk or impediment, and come out the other side with some measure of success…Thankfully, most experts say resiliency is something that can be fostered, nurtured and developed in children from a very young age. You just have to build a safe foundation, find challenges and watch kids thrive.

Credit-schoolbag.edu.sg

Build a stable, safe foundation… “Having a relationship with a caring parent is far and away the most powerful protective factor for children,” said Ann Masten, a psychology professor at the University of Minnesotaand a pioneer in the study of resiliency in children.

Once a kid feels safe, supported and has a good model of resilience, it’s time to challenge her a little…’One of the great skills of parenting is knowing how to challenge, when to challenge, how much to challenge,’ Dr. Masten said. ‘There’s no one right way to foster resilience, just like there’s no one right way to parent.’

If you put the word “resilience” on a poster, it would probably be under a photo of someone climbing a mountain, fighting a forest fire or perhaps tending to patients in a Covid ward. But, in fact, it’s the small disappointments or frustrating moments that truly build resilience.”

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this post

NOTE: Lessons can also be used with native English speakers.

Level: Intermediate – Advanced


Language Skills: Reading, writing, and speaking. Vocabulary and grammar activities are included.


Time: Approximately 60 minutes.


Materials: Student handout (from this lesson) and access to news article.


Objective: Students will read and discuss the article
with a focus on improving reading comprehension and improving oral skills. At the end of the lesson students will express their personal views on the topic through group work and writing.

I. Pre-Reading Activities

 Predictions: Using a Pre-reading Organizer

Directions: Examine the title of the post and of the actual article. Next examine  any photos. Write a paragraph describing what you think this article will discuss. A pre-reading organizer may be used.

II. While Reading Activities

Word Inference

Directions: Try to infer the meanings of the words in bold taken from the article. You use a dictionary, thesaurus, and Word Chart for assistance.

  1. Raising a resilient kid might be challenging.
  2. In my early teens, my dad took myself, my best friend and our neighbor on a grueling backpacking trip.
  3. By the second day  we were besieged by mosquitoes.
  4. We finally mutinied.
  5. Later, of course, I described the hike as an epic victory of teenager over nature.
  6. It’s a psychological principle blending optimism, flexibility, and problem-solving.
  7. It is about the ability to bounce back even when times get tough.
  8. You just have to build a safe foundation, find challenges and watch kids thrive.
  9. Children need to feel they have a stable home base before they can take risks and learn to bounce back.
  10. When we arrived, we learned that the next 48 hours would be plagued with thunderstorms, downpours and even a flood warning.

Grammar Focus: Identifying Prepositions

Directions: The following sentences are from the news article.For each sentence choose the correct preposition from the choices listed. Note that not all prepositions listed are in the article.

Make the most of small challenges. If you put the word “resilience” on a poster, it would probably be under a photo of someone climbing a mountain, fighting a forest fire or perhaps tending to patients in a Covid ward. But, in fact, it’s the small disappointments or frustrating moments that truly build resilience.

When teaching canoeing, for instance, he starts by putting a kid into a boat to see if she can figure it out. Then, after a little frustration, he gives some instruction and lets her try again.

Reading Comprehension: Identify The  Speakers

Directions: Read the following quotes from the speakers in the article. Then identify the speakers.

  1. Whether he knew it or not, Dad was a big believer in the concept of resilience, the ability to engage with a challenge, risk or impediment, and come out the other side with some measure of success.”
  2. Resilient people not only bounce back, but also thrive in the best of times.”
  3. Creating resilience in children isn’t just chucking them into the deep end of a pool to see if they can swim, it’s about the bedrock of support you give them every day. Having a relationship with a caring parent is far and away the most powerful protective factor for children,”
  4. “It’s not just about being tough — that’s not resiliency. It’s about doing things that you’re not sure you can do. And with other people.”

Discussion Questions for Comprehension /Writing

Directions: Have  students discuss the following questions/statements. Afterwards,  students share their thoughts as a class. To reinforce the ideas, students can write an essay on one of the topics mentioned.

  1. According to experts, how is resiliency acquired?
  2. How does Dr. Masten,  describe resilience?
  3. What must parents do before attempting to teach resilience to their children?
  4. Why is it important to ‘regulate’ your own emotions around your children?
  5. The article states that if some people place the word ‘resilience’ under a poster, it would probably be under a photo of someone climbing a mountain, fighting a forest fire or perhaps tending to patients in a Covid ward. The article continues to state, “But, in fact, it’s the small disappointments or frustrating moments that truly build resilience.” What photo or image would you place under the word ‘resilience’?
  6. Explain ’cause and effect’ as applied to a child coming home with an F in math.
  7. According to Dr. Masten what is one great parenting skill?
  8. List three new ideas  that you’ve learned about the topic from the reading,  two things that you did not understand in the reading, and one thing you  would like to know that the article did not mention.  Share your responses with your class.
  9. List 3  questions that you  would like to ask any person mentioned in the article. Share questions as a class.

 

Photo Activity for speaking or Writing

Place students in groups and have the cut out or take pictures describing what they think resilience means. Share pictures as a class.

ANSWER KEY

Employees Are Suing Their Employers for Their Work From Home Expenses

“In the more than two years since the pandemic shut down many offices, employees across the country have been forced to set up desks in cluttered kitchens and cramped bedrooms… A rise in employee lawsuits demanding reimbursement [some as high as $5,000] for expenses incurred while working from home during the pandemic.” H. Martín, Los Angeles Times, April 12, 2022

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this post with Answer Key

Getty Images

 

Excerpt:  Workers are suing their bosses to get their work-from-home costs reimbursed By Hugo Martín, Los Angeles Times, April 12, 2022

‘We have tons of these in the pipeline,’ said Jacob Whitehead, an attorney who has filed about 20 class-action lawsuits over business expenses demanded by employees.

Home expenses such as telephone and internet fees, extra energy to heat or cool a house and office supplies can add up to $50 to $200 a month per employee, according to more than a dozen lawsuits examined by The Times.

If expenses were incurred during the entire duration of the pandemic, that could add up to as much as $5,000 for every worker. Some lawsuits are also demanding payment for the potential revenue employees could have collected had they rented out their home office instead of using it for work…

Other lawsuits, many of which are still working their way through the court system, have targeted such business giants as Wells Fargo Bank, Liberty Mutual Insurance, Visa, Oracle and Bank of America…The lawsuits highlight one of the most dramatic changes the pandemic brought to the business world: the widespread transfer of employees from business offices to home offices to help minimize the spread of the coronavirus.”

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this post

NOTE: Lessons can also be used with native English speakers.

Level: Intermediate – Advanced


Language Skills: Reading, writing, and speaking. Vocabulary and grammar activities are included.


Time: Approximately 60 minutes.


Materials: Student handout (from this lesson) and access to news article.


Objective: Students will read and discuss the article with a focus on improving reading comprehension and improving oral skills. At the end of the lesson students will express their personal views on the topic through group work and writing.

I. Pre-Reading Activities

KWL Chart

The K-W-L chart is used to activate students’ background knowledge of a topic in order to enhance their comprehension skills.

Directions: Have students use the KWL chart to list the information they already know about people working from home during the pandemic. Next, have students list the information they would like to learnLater in the Post- Reading segment of the lesson, students can fill in what they’ve learned about the topic.

II. While Reading Activities

Word Inference

Directions: Try to infer the meanings of the words in bold taken from the article. You use a dictionary, thesaurus, and Word Chart for assistance.

  1. It has been more than two years since the pandemic shut down many offices.
  2. White-collar employees across the country have been forced to set up desks in cluttered kitchens and cramped bedrooms.
  3. Another consequence of the mass relocation of office workers: A rise in employee lawsuits demanding reimbursement for expenses.
  4. There are tons of lawsuits over business expenses demanded by employees.
  5. If expenses were incurred during the entire duration of the pandemic, that could add up to as much as $5,000 for every worker.
  6. Many companies paid for snacks and lunch for employees who worked in the office — perks that were eliminated when members were ordered to work from home.
  7. Other lawsuits, many of which are still working their way through the court system, have targeted business giants.
  8. Companies that are being sued for failing to reimburse their employees have argued that the pandemic caught them off guard and unprepared to respond.
  9. The lawsuits highlight one of the most dramatic changes the pandemic brought to the business.
  10. Workers said they teleworked frequently before the coronavirus outbreak.

Grammar Focus:Structure and Usage

Directions: The following groups of sentences are from the article. One of the sentences in each group contains a grammatical  error.  Identify the sentence (1, 2, or 3 ) from each group that contains the grammatical error.

I

  1. New social codes developed between employees and employers.
  2. This was another consequences of the mass relocation of office workers.
  3. Home expenses such as telephone and internet fees can add up.

II

  1. Seppala was laid off from Better Mortgage in December of 2021.
  2. Better Mortgage did knot respond to emails seeking comment on the case.
  3. The tech industry has faced strong criticism from workers after cutting perks during the pandemic.

III

  1. Meta, the parent company of Facebook, got pushback from employees last month.
  2. Other lawsuits  have targeted such business giants as Wells Fargo Bank, Liberty Mutual Insurance, Visa, Oracle and Bank of America.
  3. Visa declined too comment on the lawsuit.

Reading Comprehension: Identify The  Speakers

Directions: Read the following quotes from the speakers in the article. Then identify the speakers.

  1. “We have tons of these in the pipeline.”
  2. “This is one of those pandemic-related issues that rose very suddenly.”
  3. “As soon as we started working from home, I realized how much day-to-day money I really had because of how much went toward paying for that stuff.”
  4. Her bosses have failed to reimburse her and other employees for a variety of business expenses since sending them to work from home in March 2020.
  5. The cost shouldn’t be shifted to the employees…This benefits the business.”
  6. “For equipment like laptops, webcams, microphones and a work desk, it is reasonable for an employer to pay for this…For more general costs like refurbishing a home office, improved broadband or lunch, that is less common and would depend on a case-by-case basis.”

 

III. Post Reading Activities

Discussion Questions for Comprehension /Writing

Directions: Have  students discuss the following questions/statements. Afterwards,  students share their thoughts as a class. To reinforce the ideas, students can write an essay on one of the topics mentioned.

  1. Did you have to work from home during the pandemic? Did you incur expenses while you worked? If so what were they?
  2. Did you have to attend school from home? If so, do you think students should be reimbursed for expenses incurred while working on their computers?  Why or why not?
  3. What are some of the expenses incurred by employees who were forced to work from home during the pandemic?
  4. Do you agree that employees should be reimbursed for these expenses?  Why or why not?
  5. What were some of the perks employees had while working from the office?
  6. Why are so many well known businesses being targeted with lawsuits?
  7. What are the reasons companies are giving for not reimbursing their employees?
  8. Do you agree with the companies or the employees? Provide reasons for your response.
  9. Why are some employees conflicted about suing their employers? Do you think they are correct in feeling this way?
  10. List three new ideas  that you’ve learned about the topic from the reading,  two things that you did not understand in the reading, and one thing you  would like to know that the article did not mention.  Share your responses with your class.

 

ANSWER KEY

Knowing Multiple Languages Can Make You a Spelling Champ!

“A ‘woefully confused polyglot’ discovers which non-English words have become common enough to count toward her Spelling Bee score.” L. Thuy Vo, The New York Times, March 7, 2022

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this post  with Answer Key

Illustration by Alison Zai New York Times

Excerpt:How My Multilingual Upbringing Helps Me Solve Spelling Bee, By Lam Thuy Vo, The New York Times, March 7, 2022

“As a child born to Vietnamese immigrants in Germany, I was sometimes asked to translate documents into German, some of which were much more important than I had realized. Growing up in this kind of household also meant being somewhat linguistically agile. From an early age, I made acrobatic leaps between grammatically and tonally disparate languages without thinking much about it…Experiencing the world in multiple languages has made me experiment with how I approach finding words in puzzles that were constructed by people who do not know the languages I do. (However, I’d love to one day solve a Spelling Bee written by a native speaker of Vietnamese, German and English who also dabbles in French.)

Because I learned French in middle school, not too long after I started learning English, the word croissant is distinctly French to me. Even if you ask me about this fluffy, buttery pastry in English, I will be that endlessly pretentious person who uses the Vietnamese French pronunciation, ‘cruh-ah-suuh-nt.’ In my mind, that’s where the word belongs.

But many words, like croissant, have crossed the globe and exist independent of their origins. A Starbucks customer in America might order a ‘cruh-sant,’ familiar with it because of her American upbringing… I think of these words as the manifestation of different cultures in the place I now call home, the United States.”

*************************************************************************************

 First Guest Podcast for ESL-Voices!

We are happy to introduce this great ESL learning Podcast: “English as a Simple Language” from Don La Bonte:

“Here is a free 40 hour self-directed, progressive video lesson plan focusing on the basic English conversation patterns for beginners helping them to express their emotions. Patterns introduced to students are subsequently reinforced by multiple reviews encouraging them to speak rather than just passively listen or read.  They learn to speak by speaking. All videos are also available in a free podcast format for easy access anywhere.” Don La Bonte www.labonteesl.com

 

Also visit: LA BONTE’S Top 100 English Conversation Patterns

“Language is the art of communication of your feelings and feelings are conveyed through very common conversation patterns.” Don La Bonte https://www.labonteesl.com/patterns

NOTE: Mr. La Bonte has graciously allowed ESL-Voices to add his Podcast  to our Resources section. You can find his work here:

~ Thanks Don, we appreciate your hard work and willingness to share~  ESLV

*******************************************************************************************

ESL Voices Lesson Plan for this post

Knowing Multiple Languages Can Make You a Spelling Champ!

NOTE: Lessons can also be used with native English speakers.

Level: Intermediate – Advanced


Language Skills: Reading, writing, and speaking. Vocabulary and grammar activities are included.


Time: Approximately 60 minutes.


Materials: Student handout (from this lesson) and access to news article.


Objective: Students will read and discuss the article
with a focus on improving reading comprehension and improving oral skills. At the end of the lesson students will express their personal views on the topic through group work and writing.

I. Pre-Reading Activities

 Predictions: Analyzing headings and photos

Directions: Examine the titles of the post and of the actual article.  Examine any photos, then create a list of  words and  ideas  that you  and your group members think might be related to this article. 

II. While Reading Activities

Word Inference

Directions: Try to infer the meanings of the words in bold taken from the article. You use a dictionary, thesaurus, and Word Chart for assistance.

  1. The author is very proud of her Spelling Bee score.
  2. In the U.S. many children are multilingual.
  3. The author describes herself as a woefully confused polyglot.
  4. The author was born to Vietnamese immigrants in Germany.
  5. Growing up in this kind of household also meant being somewhat linguistically agile.
  6. I made acrobatic leaps between grammatically and tonally disparate languages without thinking much about it.
  7. That’s roughly 60 million people who seesaw between at least two languages.
  8. Experiencing the world in multiple languages has made me experiment with how I approach finding words in puzzles.
  9. I’d love to one day solve a puzzle written by a native speaker of Vietnamese and English who also dabbles in French.
  10. Crossword puzzles may describe a term in a clue and ask for the answer to be in a foreign language.

 

Grammar Focus: Word -Recognition

Directions: Students choose the correct word to complete the sentences taken from the article. They are to choose from the options presented.

Finding word/words in the/an honey comblike grid has/have also re-emphasized to/two me that English, likes/like most languages in/on this globalized age, is already something/somewhat multilingual in nature. Sometime/Sometimes we just forgot/forget that many in/of the words/word we use came to/too us from elsewhere.

 

Reading ComprehensionFill-ins

Directions: Place students in groups and after they have read the entire article, have them complete the following sentencestaken from the article. They can use the words and terms from the list provided, or provide their own terms. They are to find the meanings of any new vocabulary.

But many___, like___,have crossed the ___and exist ___of their origins. A ___customer in ___might order a “cruh-sant,” familiar with it because of___American upbringing.

With this in___, it’s been a___ to discover what ___terms are now part of everyday ___life.

WORD LIST: American foreign, joy, mind, her, Starbucks independent, globe, words, croissant, America,

III. Post Reading Activities

WH-How Questions

Directions: Have students use the  WH-question format to discuss or to write the main points from the article.

Who or What is the article about?

Where does the action/event take place?

When does the action/event take place?

Why did the action/event occur?

How did the action/event occur?

Discussion Questions for Comprehension /Writing

Directions: Have  students discuss the following questions/statements. Afterwards,  students share their thoughts as a class. To reinforce the ideas, students can write an essay on one of the topics mentioned.

  1. Do you speak a language other than English? If yes, how has it helped you?  If no, has it hindered you in any way?
  2. What are the advantages of knowing more than one language? Are there any disadvantages?
  3. In the United States, how many people speak a language besides English?
  4. What type of Spelling Bee does the author hope to solve one day?
  5. Throughout the article, which languages does the author use as examples of words English speakers may or may not know?
  6. If you only speak English after reading this article would you like to learn another language? Why or why not?
  7. List three new ideas  that you’ve learned about the topic from the reading,  two things that you did not understand in the reading, and one thing you  would like to know that the article did not mention.  Share your responses with your class.

ANSWER KEY

Category: Education, Language