Pulling over a car lesson idea

The title of the lesson is ‘Pulling Over a Car” which is designed for listening microteaching in methodology I class. Students are adults and their proficiency level is speaking, listening, writing for intermediate low, and reading for intermediate mid. This lesson focused on improving students’ English speaking and listening skills so that they can use them in real life. Because they had learned English with a strong focus on knowledge of grammar and vocabulary, they don’t have much opportunity to speak or practice everyday English. In this lesson, students will practice to describe driving a car by using key words and expressions such as pull over, used to and in a hurry. So by the end of the lesson, students should be able to describe the situations of driving a car in a real life.

I’d like to talk about how well integrated SLA theories in the warm up part in this lesson plan. Firstly, in the warm up part, this lesson plan applied Krashen’s input hypothesis by asking many kinds of questions to make comprehensible input such as T-S-S-T, and individual questions. For example, the teacher asked students look at the screen and asked them what they see. After then the teacher asked the same question again so that one student speaks at a time. It is crucial to ask questions individually to make comprehensible input. By asking questions individually, the teacher can check student’s comprehension, also students can recognize how well they follow the lesson.

Secondly, this lesson plan applied intrinsic motivation which is one of the SLA theories. As we learned, intrinsic motivation comes from inside of learners. Also intrinsic motivation has to come from learner’s own decision. Students have desire to perform because it is interesting not because of anticipating rewards. For this reason, intrinsic motivation is more motivating than extrinsic one. For giving some examples from this lesson plan, the teacher asked students to personalize in the warm up. The teacher asked students to share their own experiences by asking questions like ‘Have you been pulled over in a car?” And the student answered to the personalized question, and the teacher asked the same question to another student. Then another student answered, the teacher gave students a modeling. By doing this activity, teacher can activate students’ intrinsic motivation.

Thirdly, this lesson plan applied intrinsic motivation by using information gaps which is one of the SLA theories. There are four different kinds of gaps: information gaps, experience gaps, opinion gaps and imagination gaps. This theory claims that if students know the gaps, students want to bridge the gaps to speech. Through this process, students can be motivated and they can have communicative activity. For giving one example from this lesson plan, students are divided into A and B. Student A will have a picture in the past, and student B will have a picture of now. There must be a few changes and students need to ask questions to each other to find out what the changes are. And the teacher has students to practice by using ‘There used to be …’ form. By doing this information gap activity, students’ intrinsic motivation is motivated enough. So this lesson plan is influenced by intrinsic motivation.

Lastly, I’d like to talk about how Risk Taking influenced in this lesson plan. Reflecting on affective theories of SLA, risk taking is willingness to take chance to gamble to try something new or to make an error. So successfully language learners must take risk. This lesson planed to ask lots of individual questions to give students more chances to take risk. Also this lesson tried to encourage low risk takers by doing comprehension check a lot. The teacher asked questions many times to check their comprehension, and asked students to speak in a complete sentence by saying “Can you say that in a complete sentence, please?” Therefore, this lesson plan shows the influence of risk taking which is one theory of SLA.

To sum up, this lesson is planned to use many kinds of theories of SLA such as Krashens’ input hypothesis, intrinsic motivation and risk taking in different parts of the lesson. Especially, this lesson plan is very successful in terms of using input hypothesis. Reflecting on Krashen, learners can build up competence by comprehending messages. He said learners should understand first, and they add some vocabulary items, grammar rules. Finally they become ready to speak and write. Because of this process, teachers should give lots of caregiver speech, and meaningful messages that are easy for students to understand. For instance, we know one Chinese student who made errors about ‘negation’ such as ‘no way’ and ‘nobody help’ etc. In this case, teacher should keep giving comprehensible input a lot, then the student will understand negation by himself. Therefore teachers should keep in their mind how much comprehensible input is important, and try to apply input hypothesis to their lesson like the teacher did in this lesson plan.

Submitted by April

Filed Under: Teaching methodology

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