This week I supported a Maths teacher and used the following resources to support the learners in the vocabulary needed to describe quadrilaterals.
There are two activities which you can download in the links below.
- Quadrilaterals barrier activity has a gap between student A and student B. There are certain words to describe quadrilaterals missing. They have to communicate with each other to complete their tables. As you will see student A’s words are not in the same order as student bs. This means they have to use language to communicate with each other. I made it clear that they could not say the word they had to describe what is looked like to be able to complete the task (I also included some model sentence starters for support and gave a demonstration of how to complete the task). Less proficient EAL learners were allowed to use gestures to support them in completing the activity.
- What followed was a concept definition map. As you will see the learners could use the vocabulary from the barrier activity to support them in completing their concept maps. They were also allowed to look through their books to complete the other sections.
- They then had to use the two activities above to draw and annotate two different quadrilaterals to show their understanding. We then displayed them in the classroom for future lessons.
When learning new vocabulary it is essential that EAL learners play an active role and that they do not just copy definitions. Playing an active role in the development of vocabulary helps to internalise it and remember it.
The activities were communicative in their function and involved learners speaking and listening to each other. Oral communication is also an essential part of learning new concepts / vocabulary.
You can download the resources by clicking on the links below.