Whole Group, Whole Language Activities

If your curriculum allows for flexibility, consider basing some lessons around group activities. The activities should be driven by themes that appeal to your students. A single theme and a set of clear procedures make for an enjoyable, constructive class. The following activities require small groups of students (approx. 4 per group) to use speaking, listening, reading, and writing skills to meet the objectives.

  • GROUP TRIP

Objective: To plan a group trip for a budgeted amount of money.

Have students sit in groups at computer stations. Tell them they have 15 minutes to plan a group trip. They have a budget of $2,000. Together they must choose a destination, a means of travel, and lodging. They should also list options for food and entertainment. Groups will present their trip plans to the class. Notes should be taken by all members of the group for this purpose, and each member must present a portion of the group’s plans. After the presentations, students go back into their groups and compose a paragraph based on their notes. This trip summary will be submitted to the teacher for correction.

Possible language focus: Future tenses (especially be going to and will).

 

  • GROUP FUNDRAISER

Objective: To plan a fundraiser as a small group.

Present the students with a dilemma. For example, tell them that some classmates are facing eviction from their apartment. They need rent money fast (say, $1,500).  Have students sit in groups at computer stations. Tell them they have 15 minutes to plan a group fundraiser. They may get ideas from websites such as Do-It-Yourself Fundraising Ideas or Fundraising Tips.Com. Together they must choose a fundraiser, a date, and a time. If a location is needed, they should specify the site. Each member should have an assigned role in the execution of the fundraiser. Groups will present their fundraising plans to the class. Notes should be taken by all members of the group for this purpose, and each member must present a portion of the group’s plans. After the final presentation, students go back into their groups and compose a paragraph based on their notes. This summary will be submitted to the teacher for correction.

Possible language focus: Modals for necessity, obligation, and/ or possibility.

 

  • GROUP DONATION

Objective: To decide where to make a group donation.

This activity could be the logical follow-up to the group fundraiser. Tell students they must decide the best way to donate $2,000. They may research local charities online or look at recent news headlines to identify local residents in need of financial aid. Have students sit in groups at computer stations. Tell them they have 15 minutes to make their decision. Sites such as Charity Navigator may be used. Background information on the recipient(s) is needed to justify their donation and will be part of their presentation to the class. Notes should be taken by all members of the group, and each member must present a portion of the group’s plans. After the final presentation, students go back into their groups and compose a paragraph based on their notes. This summary will be submitted to the teacher for correction.

Possible language focus: Active and passive voice (e.g., donate/ be donated).

 

 

NOTE: Alternatives to online information include hard copies of web pages and brochures.

 

OTHER THEMES: Group Party, Group Business, Group Dinner

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