Category Archives: *Inductive Approach & Exercises

• ESL Students Can Increase Positive Emotions in Readers/Teachers with This Writing Technique

smiling teacher

(This posting includes a handout which you are welcome to use with your students.)

After reading Curry’s essays, I often came away feeling especially good. This kind of surprised me because she wasn’t among the top writers in my class. Her grammar tended to breakdown at times, and her sentence style could be a bit simple. And yet, there was something special about her papers.

Continue reading

• Four-Part Series: Why, How And When to Teach ESL Integrated- and Discrete-Skills Courses. 

Revised Cover 4 parts shot

(This posting includes a handout which you are welcome to use with your students.)

This posting expands on the discussion in the most visited posting on Common Sense Teaching ESL:  Integrated vs Discrete Skills ESL Courses: Advantages of Discrete Skills

In that posting, I explained the many advantages there are for both students and teachers when Conversation, Reading, Writing and Listening are taught in separate classes.

However, it may not be possible to teach them separately due to the structure of the ESL program. And on top of that, there is a situation in which integrating the skills around one subject or topic in one course has several important advantages for students.

YouTube To explore this more, I put together a four-part YouTube video series.

In PART 1, I discuss the best way to teach students in a LOW- or INTERMEDIATE-LEVEL class in which all four skills need to be taught in one class due to the program’s design. Here is the link to the video: Teach All ESL Skills in a Class But NOT Integrating Around a Topic-PART 1 Integrated/Discrete Skills

In PARTS 2, 3 & 4, I focus on ADVANCED-LEVEL classes. At this level, especially in Academic ESL programs, an integrated-skills course that revolves around a topic or subject area can best mirror the types of mainstream (non-ESL) college classes which student will be taking.

About PARTS 2, 3 and 4. (Including a link to two academic, integrated-ESL skills units for advanced levels which you can download for free to use with your students.)

Continue reading

• Missing WHO and WHICH/THAT: Common ESL Problem and Solution

Cover missing who Shot

*(This posting includes a handout which you are welcome to use with your students.)

Sometimes I get the feeling that some of my ESL students (including advanced ones) believe that there are a limited number of “who” and “which” out there, and they are afraid of using them all up before they die.

The problem happens when students are trying to write more advanced styles with a dependent and independent clause in a sentence.

Some examples:

Mistake: The people are walking their dogs should keep them on a leash.
Correction: The people WHO are walking their dogs should keep them on a leash.

Mistake: I try to give money to charities help homeless people.
Correction: I try to give money to charities WHICH help homeless people. *

I’ve also notice that this mistake often happens when students start a sentence with there”.

Mistake: There was an accident happened near my house.
Correction: There was an accident WHICH happened near my house.

* We could substitute the word THAT for WHICH in these sentences.

Solution: Helping students with this. (Handout included.)

Continue reading

• Engaging Student-Centered Classification Writing Unit Using Inductive Approach

WAI Cover shot

*(This posting includes a handout which you are welcome to use with your students.)

Teachers, if you prefer to be the center of attention during a lesson, THIS UNIT IS NOT FOR YOU. But if you to play the role of a coach, setting up the lesson, briefly explaining the exercises and stepping aside to let students engage in assignments allowing you more time to work individually with each student, THIS UNIT IS FOR YOU.

YouTube In this YouTube video Engaging, Student-Centered ESL Writing Unit Using Inductive Approach , I describe the unit exercises

  • which use an inductive approach,
  • the rationale for each one,
  • how they engage students,
  • how they lead students to write a four to five paragraph essay with a variety of details.

After you watch the video, you’ll be all set to download the unit for free and use it with your students.

Continue reading