Planting Ideas: Different approaches to one instructional video

I’ve finished my first set of videos for Everyday Vocabulary. The latest topic is gardening.  It did cross my mind that not everyone will want to know about gardening. However, learning opportunities are present in every well constructed lesson. A language learner needn’t have a green thumb to learn from my video on gardening. With a classroom teacher’s help, the following can be gained:

  • Better understanding of word forms. The target words include garden, gardener, and gardening. Ask students what meaning change occurs when –er is added to a verb? Consider similarly constructed words: teacher, painter, runner, baker. Call attention to the function of gerunds. A target expression in my video is do some gardening.  What other outdoor activities end in -ing? – Swimming, running, fishing, etc.   
  • The ability to organizing ideas by sequence. Use gardening as an example. Practice speaking or writing about a process. Introduce sequence markers, such as first, next, then, finally. How does one go about planting a garden? What needs to be done?
  • Exposure to compound words. The target words include backyard, garden decorations, bird bath, pinwheel, gardening gloves, watering can, and garden hose. Challenge your students to identify the compounds based on clues, e.g., a yard behind a house, objects used to decorate a garden, a bath for birds, etc.
  • Practice with a problematic sounds such as /l/. Focus on saying both isolated words and then words at the phrase or sentence level. For /l/:

[initial] lighthouse

[medial] fertilizer, cooler

[final] pinwheel, soil

[blends] flowers, gloves, plant


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