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Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Reading 2 ESL Cultural Exploration

This is a lesson that I created to get my ESL students acclimated to their new home--Houston, TX. Please take a look at it and feel free to use it...just give me credit as the idea originator! :)

Reading 2ESL—Cultural Exploration Blog (for ESL/ELLs )

Objective: The students will create a blog on different restaurants and/or cultural venues (i.e. museum, boutique store, park or fair) they visited as an exploration of cultures other than their own nationality. The students will upload pictures, as well as posts on their blog, to document their experience. The teacher will collect the web addresses on a specific due-date to spread in a public manner. The students will review each other’s blog and comment on at least 4 different blogs of other classmates.

Technology Component: The students will use a free blog to narrate/discuss their experience in a new sit-down restaurant and/or environment. (

Goal: To familiarize students will the ease of building a free blog and how blogging is a wonderful way to promote discussion and document adventures in a tech-savvy manner.

Rubric: The student must post at least 5 pictures (worth 10 pts. each) and at least 4 different posts(5 pts. each) that document their experience. The student must comment on 4 different responses from other classmates (5 pts. each).

Target Students: ESL (English as a Second Language) and ELLs (English Language Learners)

Lesson Plan by days-

Day 1-2: *MAKE SURE YOUR SCHOOL DISTRICT WILL UNBLOCK ACCESS TO WWW.BLOGGER.COM or else, no dice—the website will not work!! Bring the class to the library. Discuss how they will learn how to create a blog. If your library has a computer lab, then have each student log in to the computer and make their way to As you demonstrate and walk the students through how to create a blog, have them create their own blog. As the first daily grade, they can introduce themselves, include some interests (i.e. What they’re reading? How long they’ve been in the U.S.) and a photograph of themselves (appropriate).

Day 3-5: The students are to go around town and visit restaurants and landmarks. They are to embed photographs, videos and create posts on their experience. Please see the rubric above…& alter it as you see fit! For an example of a “mock” student (me pretending to be a student) see this posting:

TEKS: (2) Cross-curricular second language acquisition/listening. The ELL listens to a variety of speakers including teachers, peers, and electronic media to gain an increasing level of comprehension of newly acquired language in all content areas. ELLs may be at the beginning, intermediate, advanced, or advanced high stage of English language acquisition in listening. In order for the ELL to meet grade-level learning expectations across the foundation and enrichment curriculum, all instruction delivered in English must be linguistically accommodated (communicated, sequenced, and scaffolded) commensurate with the student's level of English language proficiency. The student is expected to:

(A) distinguish sounds and intonation patterns of English with increasing ease; (B) recognize elements of the English sound system in newly acquired vocabulary such as long and short vowels, silent letters, and consonant clusters; (C) learn new language structures, expressions, and basic and academic vocabulary heard during classroom instruction and interactions; (D) monitor understanding of spoken language during classroom instruction and interactions and seek clarification as needed; (E) use visual, contextual, and linguistic support to enhance and confirm understanding of increasingly complex and elaborated spoken language; (F) listen to and derive meaning from a variety of media such as audio tape, video, DVD, and CD ROM to build and reinforce concept and language attainment; (G) understand the general meaning, main points, and important details of spoken language ranging from situations in which topics, language, and contexts are familiar to unfamiliar; (H) understand implicit ideas and information in increasingly complex spoken language commensurate with grade-level learning expectations; and (I) demonstrate listening comprehension of increasingly complex spoken English by following directions, retelling or summarizing spoken messages, responding to questions and requests, collaborating with peers, and taking notes commensurate with content and grade-level needs.


Objective: To further enhance the collaboration between the teacher and librarian, the students will create a GLOGSTER of their discoveries in their new hometown. The students may create a compare/contrast blog (left side of the digital pin-board similarities and the right side differences). (Will work with all students.)

For a more challenged exploration, the teacher can create a Scavenger Hunt GLOGSTER of famous Houston landmarks. The students have to use the internet to determine the location of the landmark and document which reputable website they used to determine their finding. (Works well with Advanced/GT learners.)

For those technological unable, the library can pull books about Houston and/or locales in the state of Texas. The students can write why they’d want to visit that landmark, what they hoped to gain from their visit and who they’d recommend to visit their chosen destination. (Works well with beginning ESL/ELLs.)

Teacher Responsibilities: • Instruct the students on the importance of proof-reading, sentence structure and NOT procrastinating. • Provide a grading rubric for the components of the blog and GLOGSTER. • Ensure the students have a grasp on the facets of compare and contrast. • View the website: as a prelude/introduction to the Cultural Exploration blog/GLOGSTER • Reserve & monitor the students while they’re in the library and/or computer lab. • Collaborate with the librarian for sites to incorporate into their Symbaloo.

Librarian Responsibilities: • Provide instruction on how to use a blog and GLOGSTER. • Create a Symbaloo of reputable sites to research information for the blog and GLOGSTER. See this example of a Symbaloo for this project: • Pull books and/or reference materials for the Scavenger Hunt. • Explain and search through the two model examples of the expectations so that the students know what’s expected of them. View and

Here's the much needed Symbaloo: I only have a few links, but leave a comment to add additional links. I will add them as I get them!

Sharing some Symbaloo ♥: Houston Landmark Hunt Webmix via @symbaloo


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