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Grammar Lesson Plan

Grammar Lesson Plan

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Published by: lkohlert on Jan 21, 2010
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Lindsay Kaye OhlertCI 5646 Grammar Lesson Plan, Fall 2009Page 1 of 7
Setting and StudentsGrade Level:
ESL Program Type
: Push-in (Inclusion)
Description of Learners:
Of the 22 students in this mainstream classroom, four are monolingual nativeEnglish speakers and one is fully English/Spanish bilingual. The rest of the students are or have beenELLs, several having transitioned out of their official ELL designation but still requiring someadditional language support. The L1s represented include one Vietnamese, one Lao, four Spanish, andthe rest Hmong. Two of the ELLs are beginner-level newcomers, who are pulled out for personalizedtutoring during these lessons and will not be present. The rest range from intermediate to advanced intheir English proficiency. These ELLs are able to communicate very effectively and volubly in spokenEnglish, but most of them have English vocabulary deficits that interfere with listening and literacy, andmany use a significant number of L1 and interlanguage grammatical constructions in their speech andwriting. All students possess the idea of letter-sound correspondence and are able to decode wordsusing phonics, but beyond that, literacy levels are widely varied, with some students able toindependently read at or above grade level, and a few needing significant support to read aloud andcomprehend even simple texts. Most students fall somewhere in the middle, reading at or around the 1
grade level but requiring assistance with unfamiliar vocabulary, more complex sentence structures,and cultural references outside their experience. A few students have mild learning disabilitiesinvolving attention deficits or processing difficulties.
During the course of several Readers
Workshop lessons that touched on self-questioning as alearning strategy, it became clear that many students struggle with formulating and responding preciselyto questions. The native English speakers have no problem asking questions verbally, but they tend tomake form errors when writing. The ELL students tend to leave out or misplace operators and mix upthe meanings of wh- interrogatives. Although they tend to accurately interpret questions in context,many find it difficult to formulate their own questions in a grammatically correct manner, or to correctlyinterpret the meaning of wh- questions when they are isolated from textual or situational context.Additionally, several students have difficulty with the word initial /w/ in wh- words, pronouncing it / 
w/.As such, it is necessary to plan direct instruction in questioning.This series of lessons on questioning are to be taught in conjunction with a Readers
Workshopunit on informative non-fiction, in preparation for an upcoming Writers
Workshop unit where the
Lindsay Kaye OhlertCI 5646 Grammar Lesson Plan, Fall 2009Page 2 of 7
students will write their own informative non-
fiction “All About” books
on topics of their choosing. Aswriting an informative text requires both being able to formulate queries for research and anticipate the
audiences’ lines of questioning, developing the students’ grammatical understanding of and
practicalproficiency with interrogative sentences is crucial for success. Here I will present two of a series of fiveplanned mini-lessons on understanding and constructing questions.
Lesson PlansMondayTopic:
Interrogative Words: Who, What, Where, When, Why, Which, Whose & How
This lesson will enable students to choose appropriate wh- question words to elicit the type of information desired; students will demonstrate practical understanding of this knowledge byusing it to complete a task.
This lesson will focus on the meaning of the selected question words.
Students will be able to choose the correct interrogative word to elicit desired types of information.
Students will supply relevant responses to wh- questions.
Students will pronounce the word initial /w/ correctly.
Students will understand that question sentences end with a question mark.
Students will use wh- questions to complete a task correctly.
 Time Frame:
30 minutes
Materials Needed:
Poster with question-answer pairs (Appendix A), T-
chart with categories “QuestionWords” and “Information Wanted,” markers,
cutouts and photocopied scenes for information gapactivity
Learning Experiences:
The teacher asks the students a few easy-to-answer wh-
questions (e.g. “What is your favorite color?” “How many sisters do you have?”), then asks them what they think we
will be working on today.
The teacher tells the students that this week we will be working on asking questions,because good readers need to ask themselves questions while they read, and because next
week they will need to ask questions to research the “All About” books they will
Lindsay Kaye OhlertCI 5646 Grammar Lesson Plan, Fall 2009Page 3 of 7
Focused Learning
The class chorally reads the first question-answer pair from the poster.
The teacher asks the class which sentence is the question and which is the answer, then
asks the students how they can tell that “Where is Phalen Lake Elementary?” is a
question. The teacher reinforces the idea that you can tell this is a question because it
 begins with a question word and ends with a question mark. “Where” and the question
mark are circled.
Students repeat the word “where” several tim
es, with the teacher
drawing students’ attention to the starting sound.
The word “where” is written
in the left column of the T-chart. Teacher asks the classwhat kind of information the questioner is requesting, calling on students and writingtheir accu
rate responses in on the right column of the chart (e.g. “Where something is,”“a place,” etc.)
Teacher asks the class to turn knee-to-knee with a neighbor for ten seconds to come up
with two “where” questions.
Teacher calls on a few students to share thei
r “where” questions.
Repeat process with the rest of the question-answer pairs. The knee-to-knee phase is notnecessary to include with every question word, only those that students seem moreconfused by.Expansion
Teacher puts students into pairs. Pairs do an information gap activity where Student Ahas a photocopied completed scene and Student B has an envelope of cutout images thatmust be arranged to match
Student A’s scene. While giving instructions, teacher models
the activity, playing the Student A role and demonstrating how to asking questions
“Where does the car go?” “How many clouds are in the sky?”
Note: the images/sceneused for this activity could be drawn from a content-area class
for example, anillustration from a Greek myth, as students are discussing ancient Greece in SocialStudies.
Time permitting, students switch roles, using the same cutouts but a different completedscene.
 Assessment and Feedback:
There are two types of errors students are likely to make during these activities: using thewrong wh- word and ordering words incorrectly/leaving words out when asking questions. If theteacher hears a student using the wrong wh- word, s/he should make an explicit correction or
request the student reformulate (e.g. “If you’re asking about a person, do you use “what” or “who”? That’s right, “who” – 
 please ask the question again”). On the other hand, if studentsmake mistakes such as incorrectly ordering the words or leaving out the operator, since today’s
focus is meaning, not form, during the focused learning phase the teacher may simply recast.The teacher can informally assess by listening to students during the e
xpansion phase’s
communication task. At the end of the week, students will take a formal assessment paper-and-pencil quiz, which will include a section where they match wh- questions with appropriatefactual responses.

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