Teaching vocabulary to young learners

Bachelor work

Brno 2006

Author: Lenka Přibilová

Supervisor: Mgr. Naděžda Vojtková

Bibliografický záznam

Lenka Přibilová, Teaching vocabulary to young learners: Bakalářská práce. Brno: Masarykova univerzita, Fakulta pedagogická, Katedra anglického jazyka a literatury, 2006, 43 stran a 5 příloh. Vedoucí bakalářské práce: Mgr. Naděžda Vojtková


Bakalářská práce Výuka slovní zásoby u mladších žáků pojednává o potřebe učitele poznat své žáky a rozumět jejich potřebám a problémům. Dalším bodem, o kterém tato práce pojednává, je otázka motivace a zapojení her a zábavy do výuky. Posledním bodem, kterým se tato práce zaobírá, je využití různých metod a přístupů ve výuce u mladších žáků.

The thesis Teaching vocabulary to young learners deals with the need of a teacher to know his or her learners and to understand their needs and problems. Other issue mentioned in the thesis is the question of motivation and icluding fun and games into the teaching process. The last issue the thesis deals with is the usage of different methods and approaches for teaching young learners.

Klíčová slova
Mladší žák, motivace, slovní zásoba, přístup, metoda, hra, zábava

Key words
Young learner, motivation, vocabulary, approach, method, game, fun


Prohlašuji, že jsem bakalářskou práci zpracovala samostatně

pod vedením Mgr. N. Vojtkové. Dále prohlašuji, že jsem uvedla všechny literární prameny, z nichž jsem čerpala. Souhlasím s uložením práce v archivu Masarykovy univerzity a se zpřístupněním ke studijním účelům. V Brně dne 30. července 2006 Lenka Přibilová


Acknowledgements I would like to express gratitude to my supervisor Mgr. 5 . Naděžda Vojtková for her valuable advice and help.



I have been teaching English for eleven years now – seven years at a language school here in Brno. At the begining during the discussions with my colleagues we found out that some kind of conception was needed. Introduction “Why? What is it good for ? Is it good for them at all? Do they really need it? Is it not only a useless worry? Why do we have to make them learn something more than what they really need and have to? How much hope shall we place in it? “ These are the most frequent questions I have been thinking about. In the next chapter I will focus on what is vocabulary and how it is learned and also the ways how vocabulary can be presented. different. the rest at two primary schools also in Brno. The aim of this work is to show several ways that can be used for teaching vocabulary to young learners. I will enclose some materials and games that I use in 8 . Therefore I would like to refer to the possibilities which teaching a foreign language to young learners brings.. In the theoretical part I will introduce the aim of this thesis. Reactions and opininons were. I have discussed them with many pupils. Frequent complain of many teachers is that it is extremely difficult to teach children that seem to lack the basic talent for learning languages. I have to admit that at the beginning I doubted about any acquisition for young learners and many arguments seemed cogent to me. of course. I would like to show why and how teaching vocabulary to young learners can be more efficient. then I will try to describe who is a young learner. teachers and parents. also didactic aids and methodology books. next we pointed out that there were missing good textbooks or materials. I ran against a lot of troubles that I would like to share in my final thesis and also I would like to share some ideas for teaching vocabulary to young learners. During the time I began to realize chances and occasions that English language can offer to children and I started to be a big fan of teaching English to young learners. I divided my thesis into the theoretical and the practical part – the practical part follows the theoretical part.1. In the second part of my thesis I would like to present my system of work and also different methods I use while teaching.

9 .my lesssons. After that follows the list of sources . In conclusion I will briefly summarize my thesis.books (used literature) which I used for my thesis and the appendices where I included some materials and exercises with the keys.

Teaching young learners requires the knowledge of knowing all the development differences. the children will start a year earlier and in some schools the foreign language will be introduced from the 1st grade.who was able to “communicate” with a native speaker. From my own personal experience I have to admit that learners at this age are grateful when someone invest time in them. the sooner they start. We should consider their development too. In my opinion. There is a big difference between what a –three-year-old child can do and what a child of fifteen can do. But it is possible to pick out some chracteristics which I as a teacher should know and should be aware of. Their brain and memory is ready for learning and most of them can learn quite well. These children still want to learn something new. this can be anybody from the age of three to the age of eighteen. Understanding these differences can help me as a teacher to develop methods and a system of work that I will use in the process of teaching. 10 .1. In the Czech Republic children have started learning a foreign language in the 4th grade so far. according to the new school curricula. Theoretical part 2. they are happy to present it and they feel more important. which is starting to be adopted from September 2006. I think if very young learners are able to achieve good results. There have been many disputes and discussions over this. I achieved quite good results with kindergarten children so I do not see any problems for older learners. In the 7th grade they will have to start learning a second foreign language. the better for them. Some children develop faster. Her joy was the best reward for me. I think these debates will be run over and over because nobody is able to say the exact time for beginning to learn foreign languages. Young learner . I have chosen this age group because I like working with young learners.2. I remember a girl . it is not possible to say that every child of six will know this and that.5th grade . I think the older ones can do it too. It is generally known that the Czech system officially allows children to start learning a foreign language in the 4th grade. others need more time.who is a young learner? A young learner – who is he or she? This term covers a wide age range. When they know it. I have decided to focus on young learners – age group 7-11. From my personal experience. Of course. The results are seen quite easily and of course teachers demand this kind of satisfaction. However.

argue. The teacher definitely has to be very sensitive to the children´s needs and has to prepare the lessons well. this is very important fact to keep their motivation.. They love to share their experiences.I would like to point out some characteristics about this age group. p 3) I do agree with Halliwell and her observations. We should avoid a stereotype. They are able to concentrate for certain time. Halliwell states that: young children are already very good at interpreting meaning without necessarily understanding the individual words already have great skill in using limited language creatively frequently learn indirectly rather than directly take great pleasure in creating fun in what they do their imagination is ready “above all take great delight in talking” (Halliwell. These examples of characteristics I have mentioned above are great hints how to teach young learners and what kind of methods we should use. My observations are the same as hers. They use imagination a lot. They are able to talk about what they are doing. They do not realize what is fact and what is fiction sometimes. They understand situations and through situations – they use several senses. They want to learn and are happy when they learn something. they can show off a little bit. They love to be praised for what they have done and learnt. discuss and they are able to interact with both children and adults. then they have to share it with somebody and they are proud that they learnt something. they love when people pay attention to them and their talking. 1992. They are happy when they can play. They are able to use language skills not even realizing them. They can think. Often they “teach” each other. the 11 . Very often they pretend they understand everything and they know everything. It is very important to choose the right way of teaching for these little children.

lessons have to be creative and lively. 12 . Otherwise this could have really bad consequences for the learners´ further improvement in the language.

a verb to google is used frequently a lot. and in terms of the way each of us learned our first and any subsequent languages. when understanding the second language. 2. Vocabulary 2. vocabulary is still widening. Czech word pošta. Thornbury states that they can be confronted by words that are totally unfamiliar. or being used in ways that for them are novel and possibly obscure. between the form and meaning of words when producing language. 1. a new item of vocabulary may be more than just a single word: for example. To find the right word to fit the meaning can be very frustrating. 2. This used to mean just the post office or simple letters but nowadays it also means emails. nose not noise) To meet these challenges the learner needs to: acquire a critical mass of words for use in both understanding and producing the language remember words over time. which are made up of two or three words but express a single idea. 2003. as the words we teach in the foreign language. Moreover. For example. both historically. roughly.e. For example. To summarize this. Learners of a second language experience something similar.2. We come across completely new words that are made up according to new technologies and according to the needs of real life. However. and mother-in-law. A useful convention is to cover all such cases by talking about vocabulary „items“ rather than „words“. Some words can be entirely new to us. especially if the store of words is limited. the learner while learning the vocabulary of a second language can come across several challenges: “making the correct connections. be able to recall them readily 13 . Even in our native language we are continually learning new words and meanings of old words. What is vocabulary? “Vocabulary can be defined. p 60) All languages consist of words. Languages emerge first as words. using the correct form of a word for the meaning intended ( i. (Ur. post office.

2002. p 31) 14 .develop strategies for coping with gaps in word knowledge. including coping with unknown words. or unfamiliar uses of known words have to take responsibility themselves for vocabulary expansion” (Thornbury.

p 18) The child has to realise that these common words like cat can be replaced by superordinate terms like animals. then they always start with words used for labelling. What really works especially for young learners is the Total Physical Response method . But of course not every animal is a cat. A little bit of shocking method is the direct method or the direct approach. Than during this process they will realise there also exist words like synonyms. There are many different methods and approaches how to teach a foreign language. linguist To know a word is one thing but we have to pause on the fact how this knowledge is acquired.” (Thornbury. We need to let them repeat it in different ways and they should be given a chance to listen to the teacher talking about it. Thornbury states that the children have to develop some kind of network building – constructing some complex idea. not just cats. To help the learners understand it is important to visualize the item and get the pupils to repeat or use the item actively. for example. And to this category also belongs other animals. without vocabulary nothing can be conveyed. including vocabulary. Only target language is used in the calssrooms and only complete sentences are used.TPR. so that the concept. I will mention just some of them that can be used for teaching young learners. for instance a house. Thinking about little children who learn to speak. This method stimulates the learner´s brain by music while learning but nowadays teachers seem to be leaving this method.2. there are no translations. 2. The mother tongue is never used. acquiring a vocabulary requires not only labelling but also categorising skills. Very many children are nowadays very hyper and physically active 15 . Culture is considered an important aspect. homonyms etc. The child needs to learn how far to extend the concept of a cat. “In other words. 2002. of a cat has a name cat. Suggestopedia is a very successful method in helping learners to memorize words. How are words learned? “Without grammar very little can be conveyed. One good way of doing this is to let them see or perhaps touch the vocabulary item.” David Wilkins. 2.

Communicative competence is highly developed here and learners are encouraged to communicate. Communicative Language Approach (Teaching) – CLT – stresses the meaning of a language in context. Using this method. This method is used a lot by teachers. changing topics and using a variety of activities is very appreeciated by them. 16 .and to concentrate for a long time can be very difficult for them. games.

For example when teaching nouns. “The meaning of a word is primarily what it refers to in the real world. “The learner has to know what a word sounds like (its pronunciation) and what it looks like (its spelling). Especially with young learners words that they are familiar with and they can stick to them should be taught. then we can expect words like naming animals. 17 . also regular and irregular ( girl-girls. (Ur. what they eat etc. If there is a theme “Animals”. maybe we would like to present their past forms. Ur states the learners need to be taught the form of the word. Thus. how often the words are used by the speaker of the language. using hyphenated words etc. Very often words are taught according to themes and topics. we need to consider the frequency too. Context helps them to find the right meaning. We can relate items together – for example words like “a school.” (Ur. Words that have quite specific meaning should be avoided with young learners. Word formation – using prefixes and suffixes. p 60) The grammar of a new item also needs to be taught. especially if the verb is irregular (forget-forgot). collocations. Which words and what should be taught? The significant point in teaching vocabulary is the selection of words we as teachers want to teach. 1996. we would like to present their plural forms. Learners find this sometimes very difficult and discouraging because some words do not have just one meaning. we can decide which words to teach on the basis of frequency. In the form pronunciation and spelling should be mentioned. 2. Again. then grammar. a blackboard and a break” are all associated with education. a teacher. Thus. mouse-mice). Nowadays all the course books are organised into themes and they provide vocabulary according to it. There is a choice for us. is too difficult for young learners. It is quite easy to teach concrete words at lower level and then become more abstract. p 61) In my opinion it is important to inform learners about the meaning of the word as well as their form and grammar. When teaching verbs. 3. depending what level the learners are they should be taught to follow some grammatical rules. it is good when the learners know the synonyms (smart – intelligent) or antonyms (rich – poor). Collocations – I do not think these are important for young learners. also where they live. meaning and word formation. its denotation”.2. 1996.

after some time most of them will not say “mouses”. hear or with whar they can touch.To summarize this. we will not teach them. Secondly. In my opinion. firstly I think that knowing the word and understanding its meaning go hand in hand. 18 . But as said above they also need to know other aspects of the words they learn. for example the irregular plural form right away. it is easier to remember concrete words like a chair or a dog than abstract words. I think that if we keep repeating the plural form “mice”. Of course. Young learners often put words together with what they can see. it is important to teach them all these aspects. but they need to know it.

p 75) Firstly. Vocabulary presentation “By presentation we mean those pre-planned lesson stages in which learners are taught pre-selected vocabulary items. Some techniques are more popular and more often used than others. photographs and magazine pictures. In my opinion. their familiarity with the words – have they come across these words or are they completely new? words difficulty – are the words abstract. 3. he or she should follow certain guidelines. can we find similar words in the learner´s native language etc. The presentation of new vocabulary can be classified for example according to verbal and visual techniques. are they easily pronounced. And of course there are techniques that we as teachers try to avoid. A number of techniques can be adopted to present new vocabulary items. wall charts. this includes teaching the vocabulary "in spoken form first" to prevent students from pronouncing the words in the form they are written. we should consider how many words should be presented during the lesson.? can the words be easily demonstrated ? shall we use realia or anything that the pupils can become familiar with? can pictures be used to elicit vocabulary? After the teacher chooses what items to teach. and revising them. I think every teacher tends to use and prefers some technique that he or she finds interesting. the older ones can manage pretty well abstract explanations or even definitions. intermediate etc.2. placing the new items in context.” (Thornbury. Also it is up to the teacher which techniques he or she decides to use but always the effectiveness of teaching should be considered. Another factor that is worth considering is the age of the learners. several realia 19 . blackboard drawings. word pictures. There are techniques that are particularly appropriate for certain types of words – for example actions can be explained through pantomime. Among visual techniques we can find pictures . 2002.flashcards. This is closely connected with several factors: the level of the pupils – beginners. Younger ones react quite well when we show them concrete illustrations. posters.

definition by abstraction. even though it is quick and easy but can be very discouraging for learners. action and gestures can be used especially for explaining actions and times. Verbal techniques consist of using illustrative situations. Explanation can become extremely difficult especially with beginner levels. Most of the young learners have never used a dictionary before so it is a need to teach them to use dicitonaries first. contextual definitions. 20 . subclasses and subcategories often aided by visual presentation. It could be done by the teacher or with using a dictionary. Another way that can be used is translation. Learners can label pictures or objects or perform an action. synonyms and antonyms. Words can be organised into sets. learners can learn how to use dictionaries. They cannot interact with the words. and definition by translation. Using this technique. Teachers can prepare quite interesting lesson where the learners learn how to use dictionaries. descriptions.that teachers can hold up or point to. collocations. In my opinion it is good to use both picture dictionaries and classical dictionaries where they find the meaning with young learners. They have to be told there are two parts – English-Czech and CzechEnglish. definition by demonstration (visual definition). scales. Translation is one of the traditional ways of explaining the meaning of words. Then they have to be told about the alphabetical order and about other things they can find there. and using various forms of definition: for example. Mime. It has its advantages but also disadvantages. This technique is not used much recently.

2. Or if we have an observer in the lesson. 1992. But sometimes something goes wrong. there are at least fifteen pupils – usually even more.” (Halliwell. or not very able. we want to praise the children as much as possible but on the other hand we want to be realistic and. creative. We should evaluate the lesson ourselves. we should discuss it with him/her. make crosswords etc. we should reject the idea of pairwork because our clasess are big. being realistic should mean taking realities into account in such a way that good things can still happen. very honestly. We draw pictures. On the contrary. independent. or poorly motivated. “We need to be realistic in our expectations of ourselves and the learners. This of course leads to the fact the children will become silly and they will really enjoy it. Language classrooms are noisy.. And we hope it will be worthwile. cut paper into small pieces. 21 .. draw flashcards. teachers can come across many language teaching ideas and techinques. Be realistic Nowadays. and we do it even at midnight. our expectations are sometimes very high. for example. be active. sensible. There are teachers who would never do such activities again. And their lessons then turn to be boring. p 19) After every lesson we should ask ourselves whether the lesson was productive or unproductive and we should go back to our objectives and aims. The classes with high number of students put exceptional demands on teacher`s preparation for the lesson and there is obviously a requirement of larger classrooms too. There are many of them in circulation that it is quite easy to get carried away. creative. 4. We want to be flexible. It does not mean. . Quite often the children are not “angels”. We encourage them to interact.

“We will not help the children to develop their capacity to concentrate if we jump inconsequentially from one topic to the next. oral work. The children´s minds have to jump from one topic to another with not much time to let things sink in effectively. Thinking about the positive way of the word “stir”. Another aspect we should think about are activities which engage children´s minds and which keep them physically occupied. Of course. [1] Another factor that teachers should bear in their minds is to keep the lessons simple. p 27) 22 . it means these activities will wake up the class. Some language activities can stir a class. It needs to be considered well. But this can mean we may produce a lesson which is a disaster. “If we are to help the learners acquire independent second language lexicons. The lesson can be varied by doing lots of activities on different topics. too many activities and changing the activities all the time can destroy the lesson well. There are ways of varying the oral work so that it is making different demands on the children and therefore feels different even when the topic remains the same.2. there should be considered what kind of activities should be choosen knowing the effect of them. Before the lesson is planned. games. Activities that can stir the class are. This is good but can lead to misunderstanding. They may seem to settle the pupils. 1992. filling-in exercises. we can begin to introduce varieties of the language used in different contexts.” (Halliwell. We should realise some important things. competitions. 1. we need to highlight the importance of the context in which the language naturally occurs. We should not forget context developing activities. there are activities that have the opposite effect. 4. for example. dialogues” etc”. Many coursebooks provide learners with plenty of opportunities to develop their own context for the language presented. We often try to make our lessons varied. warm them up. for example activities like “odd one out. This is not easy and teachers should spend really quality time to think about this. Choosing activities It is up to the teacher mostly to choose the right activity. Once the idea of context playing a decisive role in the choice of language is firmly established.

teachingenglish. Because the classes know them.shtml 23 .1992. “Because you use them regularly you will quickly get to know the best way to set them up with your classes. They can become truly the core of your language teaching.. Then they can transfer to different topics and situations.. Variation comes in the forms of activity as Halliwell states.Variation does not only mean changing the topics and materials but also the change of work we do. they will take to them easily when they appear. We can reuse materials all the time. we can come up with new things but always the activities should be simple in p 38 ) [1] http://www.” (Halliwell. Using different methods and ways of teaching should become a regular part of our

(Khan. Singing. Piaget (1967) (Piaget in Teaching English to Children) saw chidlren´s games as. p 37) Teachers can tell stories the learners are familiar with in their own language. They play and love to play. Khan states that the achievement of these goals signals the end of the game. the stories need to be picked carefully.2. The language learnt by heart can often be a part of the activities. Children need to be involved and even excited in order to learn effectively.. Learning can be absorbed really well. Again. 1995. “ For young learners.1995) Games may focus on oral or written part of the language. drawing. And J. a game that works like this is well-known game “Simon says”. “Telling stories to students can result in natural language acquisition on their part.” (Khan. Fun and games should have an important role in the children´s education. Many games can be looked at as drill exercises but they have an added fun and competition element. is likely to be weaker than that created by events in the classroom itself. For example. Children are very often concerned with controlling whether everybody follows the rules and whether they are not broken. p 33) It is evident that young learners learn through play much easier and they enjoy it more. model-making. In playing together we can see elements of interaction and during interacting the learners develop language skills.. they offer a vast selection of activities. I and J.” (Rixon. What is a game? “A game is played when one or moreplayers compete or co-operate for playoffs according to a set of rules.. clapping hands. chanting rhymes. in Teaching English to Chidren) Games are activities with rules and goals. 2. colouring. p 143) It is obvious that the games need to be motivating. Then the learners are able to follow it better. ´the most admirable social institutions´. 1995. This is quite a natural way for them to learn. 1986) (Jones in Teaching English to Children) “A true game is one that frees the spirit. games. Teachers can come up 24 .” (Opie. Quite often the learners do not realize they are learning. commands for the games can be remembered quite easily. solving puzzles.” (Jones. 1969) (Opie. such as parental and social attitudes. Language can also be picked as a result of an enjoyable activity. I. 1995. the level of the learners need to be considered and the teacher has to investigate time into preparation. It allows of no cares but those fictitious ones engendered by the game itself. motivation deriving from the factors outside the classroom. For example. The role of fun and games in the lessons “By ´fun and games´ I mean all those activities that we loosely think of as involving play and enjoyment. 4.” (Rixon.

.. 25 .. Example .. As said above games and fun are important parts of the lesson. The learners can make up new verses. All this can be applied to teaching vocabulary too. Several activities can allow and involve more creative use of the language. I . Appreciated story can be The Story of the Big Enormous Turnip. Teachers can “play” with vocabulary while teaching it.”. A play is in the essential nature of the child. New sentences and activities can be produced by the children themselves.” or “If you are happy and you know it. then they can be extended. Songs are most grateful way for this. The teachers should not forget the values of games and fun activities in the lessons. There are many possibilities for adapting games we can find. It is very appreciated by the learners.with a simple version of the story.a song “This is the way.

These handouts are given to them so that their parents know what we learned in the lesson and can practice during the week. some have just started. their age and their abilities. I have to admit that it is a lot of fun to teach these children. most of them consisted of 10 .3. Most of the pupils only started with learning English in the 4th grade. It is evident that some learners have been learning the English language for several years. they still want to learn. of course if possible. we work with handouts that they get from me and place them into a folder. I would like to enclose several lesson plans and also reflect on some observations from the theoretical part.15 pupils at the age of 5 – 11. some started in the kindergarten. 26 .age group 7-11. I try to use English in the classes as much as possible and I want their reactions in English too. they do not have almost any troubles with motivation and as I have said in the theoretical part. The younger ones do not use any course books. I always have to consider that in each class there are more children and some with learning disabilities. Hicks. Most of the classes use the course book Cambridge English for Schools by A. Littlejohn and D. All the activities reflect the level of the learners. I tried out all the activities described here during my teacher´s career. Practical part In my final thesis I have decided to focus on teaching English vocabulary to young learners . The activities have been piloted in at least 10 classes.

At the end we sum up the lesson and I tell them that next lesson we will play a family pexeso. (On the black board there is a family poster all the time. handouts Assumptions: . they forgot. sister etc. for example:” Show me your mother!” And you have to show me your mother´s picture. mother. While talking. pieces of paper. Do you live in a family? Who belongs to your family? Do you have any brothers or sisters? What is your brother´s / sister´s name? How often do you see your grandmother and grandfather?.learners know each other and their families .to revise some basic terminology and find out what the learners know . I use pictures of my family and point to the right person and repeat who he/she is. “this is my daughter Kristyna”. 1. Is this your mother? Is this your sister? Is this your grandfather? After some time we will play a game.. Working with their pictures: (The learners were supposed to bring to the class pictures of their family members.after the lesson the learners will know at least 5 new words Aids: . I repeat the word “daughter”. so that I can point to it anytime. a story book. Talking about families: Today we are going to talk about families. 3. the learners know them well so I suppose they will be very active and will want to share . colour pencils. Lesson plan # 1 Topic = My family Aims: .. Reading and colouring: I distribute the handouts (Appendix I) that I have prepared for them and the colour pencils and the learners will colour the people..) and photos.they are ready to share and are ready to play 1.) 2. Now. 27 . it is your time to show me who is who. father. so I distribute either my pictures or pictures from magazines. I have to count on the fact. They have to say “mother” and can leave.3.. we are going to play a game and the winner gets a reward! I will say a sentence. And so on. For example.the learners get to know my family . So I ask. While doing this I read a story about a family from a get to know the learners´ families. After each sentence I make the learners say whose picture they are showing me. Before they leave the classroom. they all have to tell me a “password” to leave. Ok. now I will talk about my family. Who is this? Your. a family poster. I stand behind the door and as they leave I ask them for example for the word “maminka”.

the children can come to black board and point to the right person on the poster. they put their hands above their heads etc. the children are able to remember it without any explanation and real “learning”. But as I have said in the theoretical part. 45 or 60 minutes.Evaluation: This lesson is designed for 1st grade learners or even kindergarten children. This lesson can be varied in many ways. Learners have a chance to hear and see.” Because this phrase is repeated in the lesson many times. In this lesson I decided to use one of the visual methods that I talked about in the theoretical part. In this lesson I decided to use the TPR method too. What needs to be said here is that during this activity the children are able to learn a phrase “This is my mother/father etc. I let them jump while showing me their family members. 28 . too much variety can spoil the lesson so this is very important factor that should be considered. It is very natural for them to learn this phrase. again according to the age and level of the learners and also depending on the fact how long the lesson is – 40.

. After some minutes the learners get back to their seats and we repeat all the colours once more.. 3. picture of rainbow.´Well. (After each shout I repeat the colour after them so that they have a chance to hear the pronunciation well. I have a special reward for you. to get to know how they feel about colours . a colour poster... colour pencils. We will do it as a game called “silent post”..the learners get to know the names of the colours . But to each colour you will write down the name. Talking about colours: I will say several words and you tell me what I am speaking about.) Well done. I will pick up different colour pencils and you can shout out the name of the colour..they are ready to play .to get to know the learners´ favourite colours. blue. Do you any colours? Which one is your favourite? What does black mena for you? How do you feel about yellow? What does it evoke?I will tell you a story about rainbow. Finishing up the topic: (After the learners finished their drawings. I take a colour chalk and draw a big circle on the board. 29 . I put the poster on the wall. Usually they do really well and are happy they were succesfull with their “dictation”. We will play a game.. they swap the drawings with their partners and we check it together. (While we are talking. You can see this classroom is full of colours. You can touch a chair. Every time I call out some colour. Well done.. pieces of paper. You need to be careful about the spelling!. listen up! Black. are you ready?I do not want you to shout or look to your friend´s paper.colour dictation should be easy and fun for them 1. I willshout out a name of the colour and you must run to touch this colour. Let´s start now. children! Now you know the English names for revise some basic terminology and find out what the learners know .. I want you to do the same.. now we will write a “dictation”. Lesson plan # 2 Topic = Colours Aims: .. I say:´Vezmi si yellow a nakresli sun.. The very first person who knows will tell me and then we will send it to others and the last person says that outloud. a story book. white. green. Working with “colours”: Let´s take your exercise books now and you can see what I draw on the board.3.) Well. Since we stil lhave time left. Ok. colour chalk Assumptions: . So. a blackboard. 2. Now when you have finished. anything.learners probably already know the colours . Well done! Now you know we will talk about colours today. your friend´s trousers.. Let´s start now. I also point out to the right colour on the poster. are you ready? Let´s start..after the lesson the learners will know at least 7 new words including the word rainbow Aids: . Potom si vezmi black a nakresli three birds.) 2. I know you do not like dictations but this one is going to be now exchange your drawings with your partner and let´s check it.

Evaluation: This lesson is designed for 3rd or 4th grade learners. This topic is quite easy and children have a lot of fun with this. After they have finished that.Again. I have to be careful because the learners try to write down the names of the colours. I usually check the spelling in their exercise books. in this lesson I used one of the visual methods and also TPR. This lesson can be varied in many ways again. see and touch and later they can run in the classrooms. 30 . as I have mentioned in lesson plan # 1. I have to count on the fact most of the learners already know the colours from previous classes. Therefore this lesson cannot be boring so that even these children would be able to be active. I think using TPR is very productive and learners can learn and remember it better. The learners can hear.

Revision of some basic commands and adjectives: Well. (This activity can last as long as the learners are not bored. A pupil with the less points is the winner. Simon says Sit down! and you will sit down.the learners get to know the the basic verbs and adjectives . I am blind. mimes and actions. The game 31 ..Smile! Be happy! Be sad!. I am drinking. for example. (As I was explaining the rules.) Now I need a volunteer who will say the sentence instead of me. Together we repeat the words and do the actions. Verbs Aims: . handouts Assumptions: . Of course during this acitvity we will practice the adjectives too. Evaluation: This activity is designed for 4th grade. Are you reday? Stand up! Sit down! Close your books!.after the lesson the learners will know at least 8 new words Aids: .) 2. I was doing what I was saying. it is time for a game.colour pencils. BUT if I don’t say Simon says you mustn’t do anything. it can be used as a revision of what the learners have already known. Learning new vocabulary: I want to teach the learners new vocabulary. The teacher also needs to know how many words the learners know. today we are going to practice some verbs and adjectives.4.they are ready to play . I will say Simon says Stand up! and you will stand up. now I will say some basic commands and you will do what I say.they want to express their feelings 1.. I decided to show another way of teaching vocabulary to young learners . I am showing them the motions. At the end of the lesson I always check whether they undrestand all the practised commands and adjectives.. then I go on with the newer ones.learners know some basic commands . I am asleep. For this activity I decided to choose the well-known commands as a warm-up. you can be the teacher now. While explaining all these actions. you’ll get a point. I always use the English language for explaining the actions and adjectives because the motion help the children to understand. What are verbs and adjectives? Can you tell me an example? Is the word ´sit´a verb? Is theword ˇhappy´an adjective? So..using revise some basic terminology and find out what the learners know . If you do. I ma dancing. We will play the game “Simon says. Lesson plan # 3 Topic = Adjectives. I always start with the easier and already known ones. I am writing etc. 3. I am deaf. Now. I am bored.” Does anybody know this game? I will explain the rules to you. Then we will play a game.

When I get feedback from the children. 32 . they usually tell me they like it more when they can give the commands. Very important aspect of this game is discipline. The learners need to pay attention to what I say. The learners are very competitive and active because everybody wants to be the winner. Very often I play this game in groups where more children can practise the phrase Simon says.Simon says practises the language in reality. This activity can be used as a warm-up or we can fill in some part of the lesson if minutes are left.

. Listening: Now. Well done! The word is ANIMALS! And the winner is Honza? Here is your price! What is it? Yes.) 2. it is a toy dog..) Well done. colour pencils. I will write something on the blackboard and you have to find out a hidden word in it.after the lesson the learners will know at least 5 new words Aids: . a tape recorder Assumptions: . brainstorming: Well. the topic of today´s lesson.3. Lesson plan # 4 Topic = Animals Aims: .learners will probably know some English names of animals . You are going to hear several sounds of animals and I want you to write their names on a piece of paper. You 33 . we are going to talk about animals today. You cannot talk. the winner gets a price! If you think you know. just put your hand above your head. you are very good! Now we will listen again but this time you do not have the pictures. WHAT SONG P ICTURE MOTHER CARD LOVE CH R I S T M A S In these words you can find 1 get to know the basic animals in English . I get ready the tape recorder. 4. You will hear 5 sounds and I think you will know all of To make it easier I distributed a set of pictures among you and you will hear all these animals. handouts. you can just write down number to each picture. I will start up the lesson in a little bit different way than usually.they are ready to share and lsiten 1. children.learners like animals .to revise some basic terminology and find out what the learners know . an animal poster. Do you understand? ( The learners are ready to listen now. So as you can see. So. What animals do you know? What is your favourite animal? Have you ever been to the zoo? Do you like big animals? Areyou scared of any? Do you know any exotic animals? Do you have an animal at home?… (During this talking I write down on the blackboard all the animals the learners name and distribute pictures of animals among the children. we will listen to a tape recorder. Talking about animals.

If you need help. If somebody remains quiet. where they live. Through brainstorming. each child can talk and I pay attetnion to this. which is not as easy for them. I do not tell them which animals they have to choose or what exactly needs to be written there or how exactly it has to be done. what is your favourite animal? etc. they do not need my help. Right at the beginning of the lesson the learners have a chance to brainstorm. so the children do not usually have any troubles with this. everybody is included. so I can show them so that they get ideas. (This is a little bit more difficult but the sounds are of well-known animals so the chidlren will not have any troubles with it. Evaluation: This lesson is designed for 3rd or 4th grade. I ask questions – Honzo.must guess which animals you hear. So you need to know some animals and also something about them. make groups of 4 and each group has to prepare a poster. do you know any animals?. imagine you are going to take a friend of yours to the zoo soon and you want to give him/her a tour. the learners usually remember at least 1 new word. you can write about them – what they eat. because you can work with dictionaries. Also usually this activity takes longer time. if nobody is able to guess this word. anything you like. This lesson can be varied in many ways and can be done with younger learners too. Probably the hidden word would be too difficult for them. So now. Again.) 3. This is very active time. Then I let them be creative and let them work on the project. You can either draw or glue animals. I help them. so the teacher would have to come up with a different activity. therefore after this activity I need to calm them down and we listen to the sounds of animals. All the sounds are of known animals. The topic is also very grateful and from my personal experience the children always have a lot of fun with it. I usually have examples with me in the lesson. 34 . you can use them. Project: Now. Of course. you can either ask me or. (Usually the learners want to be creative and work on their own. Jano. so I let them work in the next lesson too. Then they have to guess the hidden word.

I will say an English word and you can find the Czech equivalent in the dicitonary. It is orgaized according to the alphabetwhich you already know.. flashcards Assumptions: .various kinds of dicitonaries. Working with the dictionaries: Now it is time to start “working” with the dicitonaries.. you can start working. the English one. Which one is the odd one? Yes. You can work in pairs and you must circle the odd ones. So thank you for coming and helping me to bring the dictionaries. Thses books are called dictionaries. distribute these dictionaries. If you find id. Do you understand it? Well. At the end we check the exercixe together. Practise: I usually ask the children to find out three vocabulary items to practise the find out the odd words . I distribute the handouts (Appendix II) and the learners work on the teach and practise using dicitonaries . 5. pear. Lesson plan # 5 Topic = Fruit Aims: . window”. you can see there are two parts. If their answer is right. If I say an English word. If you open revise some basic terminology . So if you do not understand some word. which part will you be looking in?Yes.but even this fact the learners need their time to get used to working with the dictionaries 1. Introducing dictionaries: This mornig as I was getting ready for your lesson I realised I would need helpers. 2. Each child says one letter from the aplhabet. Let´s quickly revise the aplhabet. English-Czech and Czech-English.learners know the alphabet so this should not be that difficult . 35 . handouts.. I will give you the handouts and you have to work on them.after the lesson the learners will know 5 new words Aids: .“apple. I need to be sure they are familier with working with the dictionaries. So. As homework they have to prepare similar exercise. So the word is a lemon. Now.3.Well done! At the end of the lesson we can sing the alpabet song if you want to. one into each desk. you can find it here. Now check these three items . put your hands above. I will go on like this for a while. 3. the window is the odd one.

Now I have to make sure that children know the alphabet really well. From my own personal experience I have to say that children usually like working with dictionaries and like the exercises.This activity is designed for learners in the 4th grade. I did not manage to do everything that I planned for the lesson. 36 . This is probably their first time using and working with dictionaries. But it cannot be long because the learners easily get bored with it. Every time there is a child who has troubles with it but it is normal. I said that it is very traditional and maybe an old way but I wanted to show that translation can be used and sometimes should not be avoided. I have to admit that when I first taught this topic and was teaching how to use dicitonaries.Evaluation: I talk about using dictionaries as a way for teaching vocabulary in the theoretical part.

learners already know some weather terminology .to understand the text about weather . Poem: (Appendix IV) Well. I have to give you a homework. a poem Assumptions: . I wil lwrite the questions on the blackboard. 4. so that the children would have to memorize it. I will write it on the blackboard. If not. Do you like this kind of weather? What do you like to do in this kind of weather? What is your favourite season? Why? Do you prefer hot weather to cold weather? etc. Every time we read it. I assume the children will ask me what is wrong with me. now it is time to learn a short poem. each child reads a line. (Appendix III) I distribute the texts and I read first. The children just listen. 6. children! ( I look very tired and I am not happy. Reading: Now. After find out the odd words . I read it outloud and then we read it together. 3. I have to say it myself. Talking about weather: Good morning. enjoy it and see you next lesson. The learners can see the whole poem on the revise some basic terminology . flashcards.3. So. This is all because of the weather. Bye bye! 37 . You will have to answer some questions too.after the lesson the learners will know 5 new words Aids: . I erase 1 word. we start learning the poem. I am tired and I would like to be at home in my bed with a hot cup of tea and my favourite book.) I am not happy today. we will read a short text about the weather and then we will talk about it. This won´t take you long.the learners usually are not as willing to talk so I have to ask right and direct questions 1. When this is done. We talk about the text and after that they answer the questions all by themselves.reading texts. Lesson plan # 6 Topic = The Weather Aims: . You all know this type of exercise. Odd one out: (Appendix V) Thank you very much for your work today and so that you can practise these new words at home. 2. because you have been working hard. so all you have to do is to find the odd word out.

I have to be really well prepared for this lesson. This lesson is done completely in English and the communicative competence is highly encouraged and used here. Working with a text is important for them. At the end they memorize the poem by heart and I have to confess that 99% of the class always remember the poem.Evaluation: This activity is designed for 5th grade. I work with the learned vocabulary and I build on it. Usually next lesson I go on in this topic. The lesson does not have to seem interesting to the learners at first but later they start to like it. 38 . This lesson makes use of it. looking for information is another way to learn the language. I have to admit this is not easy but I as a teacher have to adjust my vocabulary and talking to the learners´ level. In the theoretical part I talk about CLT as a way of teaching vocabulary to young learners.

Discipline is not usually 39 . did you learn anything new today? You could see that we can have fun and play with prepositions in English too. Revision: Well.learners already know some prepositions . If come up with a story focusing on prepositions . maybe you can use nouns. The story time: So. And it is not just prepositions you can use in a story. All the children are curious about the story so they pay attetnion to it. are you ready? Do you still think it is difficult? Ok.) 2. It is only up to you. I bet she will like it. I tell them they have to focus on the prepositions and each of them has to say a sentence. I met a man IN a town. right? Can you tell me any examples of Czech prepositions? …Well done! And now. Once upon a time. It has to make sense. I usually do not correct grammar mistakes. Evaluation: This activity is designed for 5th grade but can be adopted for any grade. Maybe. I only focus on the prepositions. we will have regular English lesson. The only time the learners are allowed to speak Czech is when I ask them about the Czech prepositions. I decided we will not learn anything new and we will have kind of relaxing lesson. Maybe next time we could try adjectives. Don´t forget it has to be a story and not just several sentences put together. Lesson plan # 7 Topic = A Story telling Aims: . ( I tell the learners we will come up with a story. As you can revise some basic prepositions Aids: . another way of using CLT in the lesson. I heardthat in the lessons of Czech language you are talking about prepositions.3. only the level and age of the learners have to be considered. Are you happy? But don´t worry. numerals etc. I will start so that you have some more time to come up with own story is not always easy 1. I will start now. let´s use them in reality. The brainstorming: Today. So. Now it is your turn! (Now each child has to say a sentence and we go on as long as needed. Then it is only English and again the communicative competence is encouraged here. we go on.) 3. 7. then we finish and I usually let them mime it or do the actions. you can suggest this kind of activity to your Czech language teacher. If they come up with the story after the first round.none Assumptions: . the English equivalents. Tell me some English prepositions! …Well done again! Since you know the English prepositions.

I have really good experience with this kind of activity eventhough when I started to teach it was hard for me.a problem even though it is always just 1 person speaking. I tried it usually with older learners and there was a problem with discipline and the learners tried to use words they are not allowed to use in the classes. they are even happier. If they are allowed to act it out later. 40 .

how it can be taught. especially nowadays. as the title prompts. From the theory. 41 . which words should be taught and ways that vocabulary can be presented. In the Theoretical Part I have mentioned some characteristics of young learners. I wanted to show that working with them offers many possibilities and we can use many methods and approaches. the results are seen easily and the learners at this age are very grateful when someone invest time in them. the teacher has to be strong at the knowledge but also needs to connect with the children. their cultural and family background etc. The teacher has to know his or her pupils. there are several lesson plans. I also talk about vocabulary – what it is. During my teacher´s training I have learned that it is important to learn about their personalities and also to get to know them. It is important to understand their needs. their expectations with which each child comes to the lessons. Every learner is different and we need to view each person individually. All this the teacher is learning while working with the learners. The teachers get to know their families. When teaching young learners. also ways how to motivate them and last but not least their learning style. In the Practical Part. I have to admit that in practice I tried out all the lesson plans and it worked well. The Practical Part proved what I mentioned in the theory. I deal with the subject of teaching vocabulary to young learners. As said in the theoretical part. their hobbies and interests and just basic information about the learners. Conclusion In my final thesis. Also. The teacher needs to understand their differences. They need to feel the teacher likes them and wants to teach them something new. There are more and more chidlren with these problems and we as teachers need to help them to enjoy the lessons and help them to learn too. I tried to show how some methods and approaches can be used in the lessons while teaching young learners. Testing and assessment will be the theme of my next future research. The focus of this thesis is the personality of young learners and teaching vocabulary to them. I also tried to show that variety is important because young learners get bored if they do the same activities in the same way all the time.4. we as teachers have to consider the learning disabilities too. Sometimes. some activity took longer time so the learners were assigned a homework.

Jsou zde zmíněny i metody a přístupy. also what should be taught. Každá aktivity zmíněná v přípravě byla vyzkoušena během mé učitelské praxe. které mohou být v hodinách využívány. These lesson plans focus on using different methods while teaching vocabulary to young learners. Tyto přípravy jsou zaměřeny na využití různých výukových metod vhodných k výuce slovní zásoby u mladších žáků. In the Practical Part.5. One of the subjects of this thesis is to show the characteristics of a young learner. V praktické části jsou prezentovány přípravy na hodiny. Another subject of this thesis is the vocabulary itself – how it can be presented. There are mentioned some methods and approaches that can be used in the lessons. Resumé Understanding the personality of a young learner plays an important role in effective teaching. Resumé Poznání osobnosti mladšího žáka hraje důležitou roli při efektivní výuce. Every activity mentioned in the lesson plans was tried out during my teacher´s profession. Dalším předmětem této práce je slovní zásoba – jak může být prezentována. Jedním z předmětů této bakalářské práce je ukázat charakteristiku mladšího žáka. several lesson plans are presented. 42 . taught. vyučována a také co by se vlastně mělo vyučovat.

6. MOON. Stuart: A Way with Words. Longman Essex. Cambridge University Press. REDMAN. ISBN 0-19-437133-6. 124 s. Jayne. UK: Longman. Cambridge University Press. ISBN-0521-35919-8. 110 s. KHAN.Bibliography 1. 12. Wendy A. 345 s. ISBN 0-582-40385-5.UK: Cambridge University Press. TONGUE. 185 s. The Practice of English Language Teaching. Penny. Longman Essex. UR. 2005. From Practice to Principle. ISBN0-17-556889-8. Longman Group Essex. Longman Group Essex. HALLIWELL. Teach English: A training course for teachers. A Course in Language Teaching: Practice and theory. 7. 4. Christopher. THORNBURY. s. 2005. 9. Lisbeth H: Teaching English to Children. TONGUE. 43 . 1991. 169 s. 142-157. ISBN-0-582-42966-8. Essex: Longman.). RIXON. Jeremy. SCOTT. In: BRUMFIT. 375 s. 1996. 1992. Vocabulary Development Activities for Learners of English. 1995. Stuart: A Way with Words. 370 s. 2. UK: Longman Group Essex. Shelagh: Young Learners of English: Some Research Perspectives. HARMER. 1988. Julia: Using games in teaching English to young learners. BRUMFIT. MOON. Tony. Teaching English to Children. Adrian. Scott: How to teach vocabulary.. Cambridge University Press. REDMAN. DOFF. 1999. 3. 1991.18-34232-9. Ray (edd. Susan: Teaching English in the Primary Classrooms. Christopher. Vocabulary Development Activities for Learners of English. 1991 10. 124 s. ISBN 0. 1995. Book 3. ISBN-0521-35921-X. YTREBERG. Roles of Teachers & Learners.UK: Oxford University Press. Jayne. Ray: Teaching English to Children. 5. ISBN-0-582-07109-7. 8. ISBN-0521-44994-4. 309 s. 11. ISBN-0-582-42082-2.Book 2. 2002. WRIGHT. 160 s.

Other resources 1. 2. 44 .org.eslkidstuff. http://www.longman.

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