05 October 2014

Writing about YOUR LEARNING in Term 4

This term we will reflect on learning in a structured way. This means you will write about what you learnt during the week, including:

  1. how you participated in class;
  2. what you did outside class to practise your English;
  3. What you learnt that was most useful to you and why;
  4. what you need more help with; and
  5. what feedback you would like from your teacher.
I would like you to write at least four times in Term 4 about these aspects of your learning.

You can write these reports in your Learning Journal or on the document 'Structured Writing about learning' and then share them in posts at your Kidblog page.

Here is a sample Learning Journal 'post'.

SAMPLE: writing about my learning this week
Here is the document 'Structured Writing about Learning' to help you keep track of your weekly activities.

Binomials and Trinomials

We're looking at those two and three word phrases that are worth learning - like husband and wife (or man and wife in wedding ceremonies), and sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll. (In fact, Rock and Roll is a binomial in itself.) 

Make sure you learn the correct order as well. (You can't say: drugs, rock 'n' roll and sex...)

More examples and a short explanation can be found here. Can you find any other websites with trinomials?

Review of Prepositions following adjectives

Here's a review of prepositions which follow adjectives: as with the first Prepositions Review slideshow, you can test yourself by reading the sentences out loud and choosing a preposition to fill the gap.

Then press Enter to move to the next slide to check your work. Read the sentence again with the correct preposition.


10 August 2014

Term 3 topic: Being Connected

This term we will connect with each other for learning outside of class hours via SMS or WeChat (on internet connected mobile phone or tablet) or email, and with other classes via our Kidblog.

Connecting via SMS text message or WeChat and email

If you have an internet ready mobile or an ipad/ tablet, please download WeChat so I can add you to our Group chat.

I will post no more than one or two chat items each week and I look forward to your participation in the chats. OR you can reply to my text messages about class work.

I would like you to let me know when you have received and read my email (no more than one per week.)

Connecting on our ESL3 at CNLC Kidblog

I would like you to post at least three times at Kidblog. You can do this anywhere as long as you remember your Username and your simple password because our Kidblog is closed at the moment.

Please write the following posts:

  1. Some instructions for using a mobile phone feature, like how to delete text messages or how to put a photo on your Wallpaper.
  2. A news story from a local newspaper or Council newsletter - write main ideas and give your opinion about it
  3. A new technology or skill that you have learned to use recently that helps you get connected either for learning (WeChat / Kidblog) or for another part of your life, like lodging your Centrelink form or filling out a form online to apply for something.

Please reply to at least 3 blog posts by other students to:

  • give them feedback on their work, and 
  • give your opinion about the subject.
Here is the news story about volunteering in the Companion Animal Support Program. You can write a post about this program - main ideas and what you think about it. We will practice some job interviews for this position too.

From the City of Yarra August Newsletter

Do you need help with starting to use Kidblog?

Have you got an iphone or iPad?

You can download the Kidblog app at the iTunes App store on your mobile iphone or iPad. You will find this very easy to use to access and use the Students' kidblog.

Term 3, Weeks 5 to 10 - Interviews

Over the next few weeks, we will listen to interviews and think about how to answer some interview questions.

Here at VILC is a video interview with an Ambulance officer who describes how she copes with night shift work. You'll have to log in to VILC with Username: 500vilcst and our password for 2014 (see noticeboard in the computer room for that).

There are tasks to complete after listening to the video. You can also download the video to listen again.

Find more information about being an Ambulance paramedic here and here at ACE jobs.

What are some of the challenges of being an Ambo?

Think about the job duties (tasks) and the working conditions (the patients and the stresses).

Why do Ambos vehicles have writing all over the windows?!

Have you noticed that many ambulances have writing on their windows? Here is the story of the industrial dispute (fight) they are having with their employer (the Victorian government).

Prepare to be interviewed for a volunteer job

We are going to practice answering some common interview questions in relation to some volunteer jobs.

The position of 'Walk with me' has gone now but there are other positions available at the website 'Go Volunteer' where you can locate suitable volunteering jobs that meet your needs and requirements.

Prepare and practice some answers to the following questions

  1. Can you tell us something about yourself?
  2. Why are you applying for this position?
  3. Which of the jobs are you most interested in? Why?
  4. What special qualities or skills can you bring to this position?
  5. What is your availability?

Thanks to Business English magazine for this image.

15 July 2014

Term 3, Weeks 1 - 4: Giving instructions - making pastry

During the next few weeks you are going to prepare two presentations that instruct someone (or a group of people) in how to complete a task. Some examples of tasks are:
  • preparing a dish
  • learning an exercise or dance
  • operating a machine or device (your mobile phone, an office machine...)
On the first day, Jill demonstrated how to make pastry and prepare to bake a Tart. Here is the Recipe.

Term 3: Being Connected - our Learning Places

Welcome to Term 3 in ESL3

It's awhile since I posted here at the Class Blog so it's a good time to review our Learning Places on the internet to get ready for our term Topic: Being Connected.

Our Learning Places

ESL Three Class Blog

  • is a starting point for all other places (see the links to those places in the Sidebar on the Right?)
  • explains whole term activities
  • is for catching up on missed work and doing extra work
  • will direct readers to the latest posts in our Class Record
  • is PUBLIC
Are you having trouble locating this blog by searching for: ESL3 at CNLC? Then you can type the QUICK link into the Address Bar in your browser: bit.ly/eslthree 

23 March 2014

Term 1 / Week 6 - 9 Turn your ideas into a readable story

We have only a few weeks of term left, and much of our class time will be spent on doing assessment tasks. That's because the teachers need to see how your work has improved during the term.

It feels like the term has gone incredibly quickly. In particular, the unit called Write Narrative is quite demanding. You will complete two narratives over these weeks.

Is this diagram of the narrative structure better than the table in our first post?

Think about these tips for successfully completing your narrative story:

  • is your story interesting to the readers? - try to relive it and paint a picture of every detail that gives the reader a sense of place and time - the setting. Who was there? What are the relationships between the people and how were they feeling before and during the Complication (key event or incident)? 
  • your plan might be just a list of words in the order of the events in the story - this will help you decide if your idea is BIG enough (even if the event is little, eg. losing a ring and then finding it two months later - important, lost before, nearly got stuck in an accident, missing it every day, about to buy another one, then finding it just before vacuuming it away accidentally)
  • can you tell your story to someone before writing it? What is that person's feedback? Did they suggest any changes?
  • use dictionary and any other resources to help broaden your vocabulary - classmates, teacher, bilingual dictionary, etc
  • look at the correction codes that your teacher provides on your draft and if you don't know how to improve some of your sentences, ask others for ideas.
Idiom of the Day
put flesh on (the bones of) something
to add more detail to something in order to make it more interesting or easier to understand 

Which of the above dot points is asking you to put flesh on the bones (of your writing)?

Ingredients of a good story: some meat left on the bones to engage the reader!

Here is an example from Kingsley's story about Gordo:
It was a cold day on 28th August, 2003. There were big white waves at the sea and the wind was strong. We were walking along the beach at Warrnambool when I saw something lying on the beach. Then I ran quickly to have a look at it.
Some of your writing lacks meat:

Did he give you any details? - No, he just gave me the bare bones of the story....

The other unit: Read narratives

By now, I hope you practice some strategies for reading texts - other than just trying to understand every word. Sometimes this just doesn't work! This simple method won't help you with idioms and sometimes you just don't have the time to understand and learn the meaning of every word.

It's much quicker and more efficient to try to understand the word from its context in the whole sentence and the other sentences before and after it.

Here are some reading strategies from the ESL3 Class Record Slide 21 that should help you with the reading tasks.

  1. Scan heading/ title, photo, photo caption, 1st paragraph, last paragraph for main ideas;
  2. Underline new words as you read through the first time (try to get main idea of each sentence without stopping to look in dictionary);
  3. Work out meaning of a new word from its context in the sentence (what is the subject? what is the verb? who is doing what?); and
  4. Look up only those new words that you really need to understand for the whole story.

Learning and Independent learning unit

Hopefully you can show that you are filing your work in an organised way in your folder (or equivalent system) so you'll need to bring this to class so I can see it.

Independent learning tasks are recorded in our Independent Learning Record so make sure to hand your Journal to me for checking. Have your independent tasks been noted in the Learning Record? Please check that too and let me know if I've missed any of your efforts there.

All this extra learning work outside class should pay off! The more you practice, the more you learn!

15 February 2014

Term 1 / Week 3 - 5: Plan and write a narrative - what are the narrative stages?

Over the next few weeks, we will read and listen to a range of narrative stories. We will plan and write our own stories following the narrative stages. Here they are.

lets the reader know that a story is about to be told and tells why it will be told
describes where and when the events took place, and if other people were there too
describes what happened
describes how the main character coped with the problem/ situation
describes how the situation was resolved (sorted out)
tells why the story was worth sharing with us

As you listen to the Emperor's New Clothes, think about which parts of the story fit in each stage.

The Emperor's New Clothes was first published in 1837 by Hans Christian Andersen for children. It was based on an earlier Spanish story from medieval times.

Consider the following questions about the story

  • Why don't the Emperor's advisers tell him the truth about his new suit of clothes?
  • Why do the people in the village pretend that they can see the Emperor's clothes?
  • Why does it take a child to point out what all the adults can see?
  • What lessons can children learn from this story?