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Sample First Lesson

Sample First Lesson for Session with English Language Learners

Your first tutoring session: a check-list of things to bring and to do:

What to bring:

  • Bring a box or bag with familiar school-related objects or pictures of objects that you think the child may know.
  • Bring pencils, crayons and paper with and without lines.
  • Bring shapes in different colors and sizes cut out of paper, or use materials from the classroom if possible (such as pattern blocks or puzzle pieces).
  • Bring finger puppets, or other small items such as animals or dolls.

What to find out:

  • Find out if child knows names of body parts such as head, ears, nose, mouth, hand.
  • Find out if the child can count in English and up to what number.
  • Find out if the child can write his/her own name. Write your name down for him or her.
  • Can the student name different objects around the room? Make a game in which you name an object of your choice and the child follows suit. This will give you an idea of the labels she or he has and doesn't have.Take note of what you find out.

First activities you can do:

  • Introduce a puppet (the puppet's name can be written on it's shirt or hat) so that you can have dialogues to model questions and answers for the child. For example: ask you puppet: "What is your name?" Your puppet can answer: "My name is Joe!" and he can point to the word "Joe" printed clearly on a piece of paper.
  • Plan to extend the child's vocabulary by adding adjectives to the objects whose names she or he already knows. For example: "Joe is Short" or "the room is Big."
  • Show your student the shapes or other objects you have brought and offer the English word for one of them. See if your student knows the same word in his or her own language.
  • Use drawings to help communicate. Draw a picture of your home, or of your pet and encourage the student to do the same. All of these activities help you to establish a relationship with your student while also providing an informal assessment of what your student already knows about the English language. This information can inform your choices about the next steps you can take as a tutor. (Hints for first tutoring session)