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Bryan Price and Tevan Fackler

Lesson Plan: Discussing Families (Case Study #1)

Overview of
of Learners


Learn about the general topic of family. Learn vocabulary about family and
have a group activity to reinforce that vocab. Have a reading and writing
activity so that the children can further explore the topic of family.

Cochran Middle School

ELL Class
6 and 7 Grade
20 students
English skills are low to moderate (There are a mix of both and we
have tailored the lesson plan to fit that)

Using relationship and physical trait vocabulary, the students should

be able to verbally describe their family without making grammatical
mistakes and only minimal verbal mistakes (pronunciation.)
Using relationship and physical trait vocabulary, the students should
be able to describe their family in writing without making any
grammatical mistakes.


Exchanging information and ideas with others through oral

collaborative discussions on a range of social and academic topics
(SL.6.1,6; L.6.3,6)

Analyzing how writers and speakers use vocabulary and other

language resources for specific purposes (to explain, persuade,
entertain, etc.) depending on modality, text type, purpose, audience,
topic, and content area (RL.6.45; RI.6.45; RH.6.45; RST.6.45;
SL.6.3; L.6.3,56)
Using verbs and verb phrases (W.6.5; WHST.6.5; SL.6.6; L.6.1,36)
Using nouns and noun phrases (W.6.5;WHST.6.5;SL.6.6;L.6.1,36)
Modifying to add details (W.6.45;WHST.6.45;SL.6.6;L.6.1,36)





E-board or SmartBoard
1 computer for teacher
Pre-made PowerPoint with videos, discussion topics, and table for
banned words list (See Procedure pt.3)
Paper and crayons/colored pencils/markers for drawing.
Worksheet for Assessment

Present the two short videos from Lilo and Stich and Cheaper by the
Dozen that are included in the PowerPoint provided. (3 minutes)
Start a class discussion in English/Spanish (as need) about what a

family is. Use topics presented in the next slide of the PowerPoint. Ask for
volunteers and if there are none, then call on someone. (5 minutes)
The PowerPoint should be projected using the E-board. THe next slide
has an area for students to come up and write some common descriptive
words in English that they already know. When the students cant think of
anymore words move on to the next portion of the lesson. (5 minutes)
Tell the students to break into partners of two so that there can be a
small group discussion about one of their family members. Tell them they
should try not to use any of the words they just wrote on the board and
instead they should try to use an English language thesaurus to find more
complicated words based on the list of banned words they just made and
make a list of words found from the thesaurus. Ask the students to describe
their family with these new words. They can talk about their relationships,
what physical traits their family members have, what role they play in the
family, or even stories about their family. All of this should be in English. Have
one partner draw what the other is describing that way the teacher can easily
walk around to make sure they are actually discussing their family . (15
Give an assessment about family. Hand out the worksheet provided
with the lesson with the writing prompt. Have the students write about their
families. They can write however much they want to write. Now that they have
confidence in describing their family, they should be able to write about their
family. Once again, they can talk about their relationships, physical traits of
family members, family roles, or a story. Have them write in English. Walk
around and help students with any questions they may have. (15 minutes)
Transition into the next lesson. Talk about the concept of family trees.
Tell the class that tomorrow they will be making family trees. (2 minutes)


Our assessment is a direct assessment that will gauge if the students have
reached the learning objective of using relationship and physical trait
vocabulary. The students should be able to describe their family in writing
without making any grammatical mistakes.
Overview of important things when teaching ESL.
California Standards for ESL

Article 1:
Harmer, J. (2007). How to Teach English (Second Edition). ELT Journal, 313-316.

The main focus of this article is classroom management. The most important part about of
teaching an ESL class is to give clear instructions. It is also important to allow the use of both
English and the original language. The goal of ESL classes is to gradually build up the students
confidence until they are comfortable with only communicating in English. The best way to give
the students confidence is through practice and encouragement. Group work is very important
because in ESL classes in particular, the students are all in it together. This really helped us
establish that the group discussion portion was almost equally important as the assessment.
Article 2:
Broughton, G. (1980). Language and Communication. In Teaching English as a foreign
language (2nd ed., Chapter 3). London: Routledge.
This article is about language and communication. Learning a language requires more than
grammar, vocabulary, and pronunciation. It requires the ability to use the correct language skills
for the correct situation. Learning English as a second language is very complicated, so it is
important to be very patient. Interpersonal communication is the key to learning English as a
second language. This why we felt like we needed to have a meaningful activity to do. We
choose to have our lesson be about family because we felt like everyone would have something
to say about family.



Writing About Your Family!

As you have learned, families can come in all shapes and sizes. Earlier you
described ONE family member to your partner, now we want to hear about all of
your family. In One or Two paragraphs, describe the other members of your family.
Avoid using the words we wrote on the board and use words from the list you made
using the thesaurus.