In the previous EIT article, I shared several warmers that you can use in your next lesson. This time around, I’m providing a few lead-ins, activities that preview the topic, grammar or vocabulary of your lesson. This is an important part of resources and guides for esl teachers.
Related and Unrelated Vocabulary
Choose 5 words that are related to the topic of your lesson, and think of 5 more that are unrelated. Write these up on the board in random order. Put students into pairs and ask them to guess which 5 words have something to do with the day’s lesson. After they’ve discussed a couple of minutes, call on several pairs to read out their guess. Finally, reveal the answer by erasing the 5 unrelated words.
Play a song that relates to the topic of your lesson. If your class has a projector, you might want to play a version on YouTube that features lyrics, if one exists. Play it once, and then ask students for their reactions.
Chorus of Words
Before class, choose an important sentence from your teaching material (one that includes vocabulary or grammar you want students to focus on). The sentence should be between 9 to 12 words. Write each word on a separate card. In class, invite one student to leave the classroom for a couple of minutes. Give each student a card, and tell them to say the words in different ways (whispering, shouting, singing, slowly, quickly, etc.) when the other student returns. They should say the words over and over several times, and they should talk over each other. Bring the student back into class. Ask him to listen to the words and try to write the correct sentence on the board.
Write the topic of your lesson in the middle of the board. Draw a circle around it. Ask a student to give you a word that relates to the topic. Write it on the board, draw a circle around that word, and draw a line back to the circle in the middle of the board. Continue this process, adding new words until you have about 14 or 15.
Hall Houston teaches at Kainan University in Taoyuan County, Taiwan. His articles have been published in periodicals such as It’s for Teachers, Modern English Teacher and English Teaching Professional. He has written 3 books: The Creative Classroom: Teaching Languages Outside the Box, Provoking Thought: Memory and Thinking in ELT, and The ELT Daily Journal: Learning to Teach ESL/EFL.