The following blog post was written by Pat Kelly, a faculty member at the Centre for Excellence in Immigrant and Intercultural Advancement.
Someone did my work for me! Well they helped a lot. Usually to find appropriate reading material for literacy learners it means creating it myself. We all know that almost every ESL text is written for academic minded students. So an ESL literacy instructor is forced to write text specifically designed for their students. The ESL Literacy Readers are a collection of material already created specifically for literacy students.
So now I have time to plan how to use them.
Our class’s current theme is securing employment so we are using the reader titled POOJA FINDS A JOB. We have been practicing sequencing; so this could be an early focus when using the reader. First, the students filled out a simple survey about ways of finding a job. We talked about different ways to find a job and discussed the advantages and disadvantages of each. Finally, learners shared which of the methods, if any, they had used to find a job. This personalized the topic and allowed the students to share their successes.
Back to sequencing. I made seven steps for finding a job based on the reader.
For example, the first step is to find a job advertisement. The seven steps were each on a strip of paper. The learners worked with their table groups and ordered these steps. When success was achieved they were given five pages from the reader. They had to order these pictures to match the order of the seven strips of paper. They enjoyed this active group project and enjoyed debating about whose order was correct.
After this they received a copy of the reader. They read it as groups and then once all together. There was just a little grammar and vocabulary to go over. Then they practiced telling the story, first using the pictures and then using only their memories. It was fun seeing who needed to peek back and who didn’t. Those who went last in their group had an advantage but the other group members had fun by being strict about content.
When we finished I asked them to hand the book in and to rewrite the story at home. They were surprised and complained but I think we went over it enough that they will be able to convey the main points. This is due tomorrow and I will return the readers to them then.
Now my challenge is to find a way to use them again on Monday when we start talking about job interviews? What questions do you think they asked Pooja in her interview?