Let It Snow!
by Judie Haynes
Snow provides a real reason for beginning ESL students to use their English skills. Here is a sample lesson plan for grades K-3.
Lesson topicActivities to enjoy in the snow
Proficiency/Grade levelBeginning ESL Grades K-2
Content Concepts and Skills
Vocabulary: Snow, snowy, snowman, snowballs, sledding, snowball fight, skiing, ice skating, snowboarding, shovel, gloves, boots, scarf, hat, earmuffs, jacket, hood, sweater, mittens, vest, snowpants
Concepts: How snow affects us our lives; what we wear in the snow, activities we can enjoy in the snow.
Background InformationReal experience with snow
Materials or ResourcesLarge snowman pattern
This lesson was designed to be covered during three days of instruction (30 minutes each day).
Ask students to relate what they do when it snows out. Make a list. If necessary, show pictures of the various activities listed: Sledding, ice skating, skiing, making snow angels, building a snow cave, having a snowball fight, throwing snowballs, snowboarding, shoveling snow, cleaning snow off the car.
For a real "hands-on" experience, take students outside in the snow to demonstrate some of the activities. The need for this may be dictated by your students' previous experience with snow.
Read I Love Snow> to your students. The beautiful illustrations will give you wonderful opportunities for language development. Have students describe what the children are doing on each page. I also had them follow the children on the first page through the book to see what they were doing. Use the Teacher's guide to have your students make their own book.
Practice vocabulary with pictures or by using a concentration game.
Brainstorm ideas for a title and have students write their choices on the first snowman which makes up the cover. A title can be provided and written for students who are unable to do this.
Have students brainstorm what they like to do best on a snowy day. Each child should write and illustrate their favorite activity on the second snowman. Use a frame for writing with beginning students. The frame is provided on the downloadable book. Advanced beginning students should write a response to the frame:
"I like to ____________in the snow."
On the last page of the book have students write something they do not like to do in the snow. Examples are: shovel snow, clean off the car, get hit by snow, wear heavy clothes, and wear earmuffs. Student can fill in a one-word answer or write their own reponse.
"I do not like to ____________in the snow."
Students cut out the three snowmen and put them together in a book.
Students practice reading their book to their classmates.
Descriptors and Progress IndicatorsDuring this unit students worked on the following skills:
- listening to, speaking, reading, and writing about subject matter information
- retelling information
- representing information visually and interpreting information presented visually
- selecting, connecting, and explaining information
- formulating and asking questions
ResourcesThere are some terrific sites about snow on the internet.
- Snowman Jigsaw puzzle. This site provides a few games and puzzles for children to do on the computer.
- Dave's Snowflake Page Donít miss Daveís Snowflake Page with itís snowflake patterns for kids. This is a wonderful winter activity and will give your students practice in following directions.
- GeoImages Terrific snow pictures from Berkeley.
© 1998-2010 Judie Haynes, www.everythingESL.net