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My advent calendar

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Handout for "My Advent Calendar" activity (Pearson Webinar), teacher's notes and student worksheet

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My advent calendar

  1. 1. 'Twas the class before Christmas… Pearson Webinars for English Teachers December 2016 1 WORKING WITH PICTURES: MY ADVENT CALENDAR TEACHER’S NOTES OBJECTIVE: Practice speaking skills and use language for description and questions. Other: ICT, culture and interpersonal skills (learning from others). AGE GROUP & LEVEL: teenagers and adults, any level. Start off by explaining what an advent calendar is. 1. Ask: What is an Advent Calendar? A piece of card incorporating small numbered flaps, one of which is opened on each day of Advent to reveal a picture appropriate to the season. For little kids, advent calendars might be a box that include small pieces of chocolate for each day. 2. Students are going to create their own Advent Calendar from December the 1st. Each day, they will upload personal or online content: photographs / videos / songs (about people, objects, places…) / Christmas jokes / tutorials / games / puzzles / quotes / poems, etc. There should be a balance between personal and online content and all content must be meaningful to that person on that specific day. Students are also encouraged to type one word or a short phrase on each day that describes an emotion or idea related to that content. Uploading personal and other content related to these holidays is motivating and will boost your students’ creativity. NB: if you decide to do this activity later than December 1st, students can think back to what happened and upload content related to something special for each day until December 1st. Nowadays, it is easy to keep track of what we do everyday (pictures we take, posts on social media, etc.). But if they can’t remember what happened on a specific day, they can just upload any other Christmas content. When they finish school, they should keep on uploading content until December 24th.
  2. 2. 'Twas the class before Christmas… Pearson Webinars for English Teachers December 2016 2 3. Share and Comment Students will need their mobile devices (tablets / computers / smartphones) in order to share their calendars with others. First, they get in pairs and talk about their calendars. Set up a limited number of time to explain a few days of their calendars (for instance, each student will speak for 3 min). Second, Student A randomly picks 1 day from their partner’s calendar to find out what happened that day. After that, they need to ask follow up questions. Then, they swap. Example: Student A: What happened on December 7th? Student B: (opening that day) I had this song stuck in my head (plays the song). Student A: What is it about? Why do you like this song? Do you know the lyrics by heart? After, they will need to find another person and a new conversation will start. NB: Getting your students to speak with different people will enhance their fluency, especially if several students asks the same person to explain the same days, since they will have to repeat the same idea more than once. Moreover, sharing their calendars is motivating because 1) it’s something they’ve created and 2) they will want to see each other’s calendars. Once your students are back from their holidays, students will repeat this activity with the remaining days of the calendar. 4. What have you learned from others? Students get in groups and explain what they’ve seen in their classmates’ calendars, what they’ve learned from them / about Christmas, which calendar they liked the most, etc. This part is really important because it gives the class a feeling of participation, sharing, cooperating, getting to know each other (interpersonal skills). HOW TO CREATE A DIGITAL ADVENT CALENDAR • Go to https://tuerchen.com/ and click on “Design your calendar now”. No registration needed. • Copy the url and confirm that you are using it for non-commercial purposes. • Start uploading content! • Share it! Here’s the Pearson Advent Calendar where you will find more Christmas teaching resources http://pearsonadventcalendar.com/
  3. 3. 'Twas the class before Christmas… Pearson Webinars for English Teachers December 2016 3 STUDENT WORKSHEET 1. What is an Advent Calendar? 2. Create your own Advent Calendar. Upload personal or online content appropriate to the season: videos, songs, pictures (people, objects, places), jokes, tutorials, games, puzzles, quotes, poems. Include one word / phrase that describes an emotion or idea to that day. 3. Share and Comment! Bring your own device (smartphone, tablet, computer) to class. In pairs, each person will speak for 3 min. Remember to ask follow-up questions. Example: SA: What’s on December 7th? SB: (opens that day) I had this Xmas song stuck in my head (plays the song). SA: What is it about? Why do you like this song? Do you know the lyrics by heart? … Find another person and a new conversation will start. 4. What have you learned from others? Get in groups and explain what you’ve seen in your classmates’ calendars, what you’ve learned from them / about Christmas, which calendar you liked the most, etc. HOW TO CREATE A DIGITAL ADVENT CALENDAR • Go to https://tuerchen.com/ and click on “Design your calendar now”. No registration needed. • Copy the url and confirm that you are using it for non-commercial purposes. • Start uploading content! • Share it!

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