Macmillan Educational Materials-Get Ready Series Files-Get Ready

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    2 Introduction

    Get Readyis a six-level English language course forGrades 4, 5 and Grade 6 of the elementary stage ofSaudi Arabias public school system. Each level of

    Get Ready covers one semester of the Saudi Arabianacademic year and contains the components as listedbelow. An outline of the structure and methodologyfollows.

    Course components

    The Students Book including WorkbookGet ReadyLevel 3 consists of a Students Book andWorkbook combined.

    There are twelve units in the Students Book,consisting of eight presentation units and four revisionunits. The language in each presentation unit followsa theme, allowing the new language to be taught incontext. Themes include My family, My clothes,My classroom and The weather today. Themeshave been chosen to meet the needs and interests ofchildren at this level.

    The workbook section consists of three pages foreach of the eight presentation units and four two-page revision units. These activities are designed forchildren to do as homework. The main focus is onwriting practice and recycling the language presented

    in the Students Book pages.The Students Book at each level of the course has thefollowing features:

    Presentation units:Each of the eight presentationunits in the Students Book provides enough materialfor two lessons. These units present new vocabularyand structures, expose the children to the Englishalphabet and basic phonics, and ensure oral andliteracy development and teach the four languageskills. The four revision units each have enoughmaterial for a lesson.

    Presentation units contain language activitiesin all

    four language skills to contextualise, practise andactivate new language, topics and skills; phonicsexercisesto practise the 44 sounds of English anddemonstrate how these sounds are most commonlyrepresented in English spelling; Phrase banks whichlist the most important words and phrases of aunit; Grammar focuswhich lists the most importantstructures of a unit.

    Revision units: Each of the four revision unitsreview and reinforce the previously taught language.They provide material for one lesson which revises

    language taught in the previous two units. TheRevision units are located after presentation units 2, 4,6 and 8.

    Saudi Stars:There are four sets of Saudi Starspages, consisting of two pages each, located afterRevision units 1, 2, 3 and 4. Saudi Starspagesare designed as extension material that recaps thelinguistic contents of the previous two input units.Saudi Starspages contain stories, chants, puzzlesand projects.

    Progress Check:Each level of Get Readycontainstwo Progress Checkpages, each consisting of 2

    Students Book pages. Progress Check 1coverspresentation units 14 and is located after Saudi Stars2.Progress Check 2covers presentation units 58and is located after Saudi Stars 4.

    Progress Checkfocuses on vocabulary, grammar,reading and literacy. It can help teachers to carry outtheir duties of on-going formative assessment andserve as a model for assessments which teachersmight compile.

    The Teachers BookThe Teachers Book contains an Introduction toGetReady course materials and includes comprehensivelesson notes covering each unit.

    Each Teachers Book unit starts with a table thatlists the materials needed for each lesson, enablingteachers to prepare lessons in advance. The tableat the beginning of each unit also lists the targetstructures to be presented or revised, unit vocabularyand literacy activities thus making the precise aims ofeach unit clear.

    The teachers notes give point-by-point instructions asto how the activities should be completed and, whereappropriate, notes are included for teachers to model

    examples. The notes ensure that the lessons are aseffective as possible and that teaching time is usedefficiently. They also contain Teaching Tipson usefulteaching techniques.

    Introduction

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    3Introduction

    The FlashcardsThe flashcards can be used to present, practise orrevise all the target vocabulary items. Suggestionsfor using the flashcards and wordcards appear in theteachers notes for each lesson.

    The PostersThere is a set of 10 posters which help tocontextualise and reinforce language taught in theStudents Book. The posters can be used in a varietyof ways. They can be used at the beginning of thelesson to pre-teach some of the target vocabularyfor that lesson, or they can be used at the end of thelesson to consolidate what the children have learnt.Where appropriate, the posters can also be usedduring the lesson, notes for which have been includedthroughout the Teachers Book. After the lesson theycan be displayed in the classroom as a reminder tothe children of the language they have learnt.

    The Audio CDThe audio CD includes native-speaker audio for allthe listening texts and dialogues for the activities inthe Students Book. This ensures that each languagestructure is presented and modelled, giving childrenpractice in listening and pronunciation. New languageis presented in this way giving children the opportunityto hear a variety of voices.

    The Websitewww.macmillanenglish.com/GRSA

    Get ReadyLevel 3 is supported by its own website,full of valuable information and resources to supportteachers using the course. As well as informationabout the course in general and the main principlesbehind it, teachers can view the teacher trainingvideos online.

    MethodologyAll four language skills are covered in the course, withoral skills taking precedence at this early stage. Whenthere is limited teaching time available, it is important

    to use the time well. Here are some suggestions asto how to structure effective English lessons, whereteaching time is limited.

    1 Oral skillsChildren should be given every possible opportunityto hear English spoken and to speak it themselves.The aim of any English course should be to producelearners who are both fluentand accuratespeakers ofthe language.

    Fluency activities: Fluencyrefers to the ability to geta message across without the message necessarilybeing error-free. Try to find opportunities for informalinteraction in English with the children, so that theybegin to understand that the language is used forgenuine communication and not just for Lessons.For example, when you come into the classroom,fan yourself with your hand and say, Phew! Hot! Thechildren will understand what you say because of yourgesture. Very soon, the children will be telling you,Phew! Hot!You can then answer by saying,Yes, itsvery hot today. In this way you will be extending thechildrens repertoire of English in a subtle way andhelping them to become fluent in the language.

    Todevelop fluency in the children, it is necessary togive them the opportunity to display what they know.Not all of the vocabulary which you present to thechildren will be new to them. Some of the childrenwill hear English spoken at home by parents or oldersiblings, and they will have picked up some wordsor phrases in English. Before you formally presentvocabulary, first allow the children to tell you the wordif they know it. At this stage, it does not matter if theydont pronounce the word accurately, or they get theword wrong. Find ways to praise their efforts and youwill find that they want to speak English more andmore. They will get used to speaking English andtheir confidence in their ability to use the language willgrow.

    Accuracy activities:Accuracy activities will helpchildren to produce error-free English. Each unit in thecourse contains accuracy activities which are grammarand/or vocabulary focused. At the presentation stageof the lesson, it is important that you provide a goodmodel of accurate English and that you make sure thechildren produce accurate English in reply. It is at thisstage that you should correct their errors if possible.

    The audio scripts on the CD expose the children togood, accurate English, so it is important, if the taskrequires them to Listen and say, that they repeatexactly what they have heard as far as possible. Agood English lesson will provide opportunities for bothfluency and accuracy.

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    4 Introduction

    Patterns of oral interaction in the classroom:Itis important to vary the pattern of interaction in theclassroom. If you constantly address the whole class,you may find that the more confident children aredoing all the talking, whilst the quieter children staysilent. Remember to address questions and commentsto individual children from time to time, or to small

    groups of children. Make sure that the rest of the classkeeps quiet at this time.

    Children should also be encouraged to speak to eachother in English, so it is important to do pairworkactivities during the lesson. (See Drillingbelow.)

    Drilling: a central part of the methodology usedthroughout the Students Book is drilling. The mainpurpose of drilling is to make sure that all the childrenhave the opportunity to speak English and that theyare saying the words correctly. There are severaldifferent types of drilling.

    Choral drilling: this involves all the children being

    asked to repeat a word or phrase together. This typeof drilling allows children who are less confident topractise the word in a way which is relatively stress-free.

    50/50 drilling: this is where the class is divided in halfand the teacher asks one half of the class to repeatthe word or phrase whilst the other half of the classstays quiet. The other half of the class then producesthe language. This type of drilling allows the teacherto hear more clearly whether children are producingaccurate English.

    Individual drilling: choose individual children to say

    the word or phrase. It is a good idea to first choose achild who you know is likely to pronounce the wordcorrectly, as this then gives a good example to theother children.

    Pairwork:shy children who normally stay quiet duringwhole class activities can often be persuaded tospeak to a partner or a friend during pairwork. Duringpairwork activities, the teacher should go round theclass making sure that the children are speaking inaccurate English and performing the task properly.

    Pronunciation: some of the sounds of English will bedifficult for Arabic children to pronounce. They shouldbe exposed to good models of spoken English so thatthey have information about the way words shouldbe pronounced. Try to get the children to copy thepronunciation of the speakers on the CD. They maynot get it right the first time, but they should aim for a

    close approximation.Sometimes the children will have difficulty hearing thedifference between one sound and another, e.g., /k/as in catand/g/as in goat. You may want to try someminimal pairs activities. These involve two wordswhere the only difference is a single phoneme, e.g.,goatand coat, pinand bin, fanand van, etc. You couldplay games where the children have to listen to pairsof words and decide which sound is which.

    2 Reading skillsThe reading skills part of the course includes Phonics

    and Whole word activities.Phonics: phonics takes, as its starting point, thesounds (or phonemes) of the language, looks at theways in which these phonemes are blended togetherto make words, and how the words are spelled. It isimportant that pupils also learn correct pronunciationand become familiar with the different sounds thatletters or groups of letters can make.

    Phonics activities focus on the phonemes (sounds)that pupils have already learned, in the current unit orin a previous part of the course. Activities introduce thephonemes on their own, then in words which contain

    the phonemes. Pupils learn to recognize, isolate andproduce initial phonemes in target vocabulary. Atlater stages, they are taught to segment and blendphonemes to decode and produce three letter CVC(consonant-vowel-consonant) words. This is animportant word attack skill which children will beable to apply at later stages when they encounterunfamiliar words in their reading, or when they want towrite words themselves. You can use three fingers torepresent a three-letter CVC word, e.g., bed. Say eachsound,/b/-/e/-/d/and point to your three fingers asyou do this. Then draw your fingers together to showthe children that you are blending the three sounds

    together and say bed.Get ReadyLevels 1 and 2 cover 27 of the phonemesin standard English. These are:

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    5Introduction

    // apple, bank/b/ ball, baby/k/ cat, black/d/ doll, add/e/ egg, bell/f/ fat, elephant/g/ get, anger/h/ hat, unhappy// it, little/d/ jam, agile/l/

    leg, hello/m/ man, him/n/ not, uncle// orange, not

    /p/ pan, upper/r/ rabbit, around/s/ sit, bus/t/ top, butter// up, run/v/

    van, even/w/ wet, away/y/

    you, yellow/z/ zoo// chin, achieve,// shop, wash// this, mother// think

    In Get Readylevels 3 to 6, pupils learn more singlephonemes and also groups of phonemes that oftenblend together, for example

    /i/ bee, meat

    /u:/ moon//

    nurse

    // forty, floor/a/ bike, lion /e/ play, date/a/ now // rose// book /e/ where, chair// oil // car//

    as in brother // thing/kl/ class /gl/ glass/br/ brown /dr/ dress/sm/ small /sn/ snake

    Pupils also learn the letters and letter groups which

    most commonly represent different sounds, e.g. c(cat/k/, city/s/) and ow(how/a/, slow//)

    Whole word: sometimes it is not possible to soundout words in English. The vocabulary exercisesin this course include picture and word matchingactivities, where the children match the whole wordto the picture. This helps the children to see not justindividual letters, as they do in phonics activities, butto look at the shape and pattern of the whole word.Building up an extensive sight vocabulary, i.e., a listof words which the children can read quickly withoutsounding out, will help them to become good, fluentreaders.

    3 Writing skillsIn Get ReadyLevel 3, the children practise writingall the letters of the alphabet. In the later units, theybegin to write sentences. Developing good habits at

    this stage will help the children when they move on towriting sentences. It will be particularly helpful whenthey start to learn how to join letters. The Workbookprovides children with plenty of opportunity toconsolidate what they have learnt and to practise theirwriting skills.

    4 RevisingTo ensure teaching is effective, it is essential that newlanguage items are revised on a regular basis. For thisreason there are plenty of opportunities to revise thematerial using the revision units and the workbook. It isoften useful to include some revision work at the startof a lesson, going back over what children learnt in theprevious lesson.

    5 Covering the s...

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