Home Forums iTDi TESOL Certificate Stages of a lesson Stages of a lesson

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    • #6574


      Choose a lesson you planned, taught or observed recently, and think about these questions.

      1. What was the main focus of the lesson reading – speaking – writing – vocabulary – grammar – listening?
      2. What was the aim of the lesson?
      3. What were the main stages of the lesson? (Use the names of stages introduced in Activity 3.)

      Post your answer below. Remember to read and comment on other teachers’ posts, too.

    • #7979

      Here is previously shared post:

      The main focus of the lesson was speaking (a 1-on-1 lesson). The aim of the lesson was to give the student as much speaking practice as possible and learn new vocabulary by discussing a specific topic.

      First, we had a lead-in with a few questions to introduce the topic.

      Then we presented some vocabulary words and expressions the student was going to hear in the listening.

      The next step was to listen to the audio, answering a few questions to check understanding (simple information such as numbers, dates, figures or more complex information to answer why or how).

      Eventually, we had a speaking practice stage where we discussed the topic, asked and answered a few questions, debated on ideas.

    • #8190

      Rhett Burton

      What was the main focus of the lesson reading – speaking – writing – vocabulary – grammar – listening?

      My main focus is to practice all four skills every class through practical and meaningful interactions. When I practice the skills, it isn’t always important that the students understand the aim. Instead, it is more important that they can achieve the task with the skills they have learned. Example: Can the students read the text with fluency? Yes, great! No, then pair with a stronger student.

      What was the aim of the lesson?
      I never present the aims of the lesson. Most of my young learners aren’t interested. Instead, I usually do a series of activities that have students engage in the aim.

      I rarely focus on one singular aim because I have several learning strands running during a single lesson.

      All activities and tasks align with a singular goal.
      Students perform this task because it provides the opportunity to achieve ‘stated goal.’

      What were the main stages of the lesson? (Use the names of stages introduced in Activity 3.)

      The start of my lesson focuses on review writing. 
      Example:” Hello. What’s your name?’. 

      The writing activity usually requires listening practice through a song. This is how I present the patterns and functions. I usually quickly follow-up with the controlled practice. I like to present some of the key features (vocab and grammar) as the students are engaged in the writing task. 

      Next, I do a follow-up activity that lets students practice the language. I generally do not explain the rules and the process. Instead, we learn by doing. I break the process into micro-steps to have the students listen and talk about every little step we perform. This is how I present meaningful task-based language. Once I have modeled the expectations, I TRY to allow my students to consolidate the language though production time without too much teacher intervention. 

      I try to have all activities lead into the next. I like when I feel that each activity allows students to layer on a skill, content knowledge, or situational awareness. 

      At the end of class, students might summarize or list what they have done.

      • #8246

        I thought it was interesting that wrote you never present the aims of the lesson and that most of your learners are interested. Similarly, with young learners, I don’t (formally?) present aims but have now been reflecting on what I do that might be akin to presenting aims. Typically, I’ll signpost the top and activities which may include basic, functional language, for example:

        This month, we’re learning about sea creatures!

        Let’s see. Do you know any of these sea creatures?

        Let’s find out more. Alisha – can you search for vampire squid?

        Type vampire squid into the SEARCH box here. Can you spell it?

        Find out 3-5 interesting things to share with your friends. For example:

        • What does it look like?
        • Where does it live?
        • What’s special about?
        • What does it eat?
        • How long does it live?

        Draw a picture and write 3-5 sentences.

        HW: Tell your family about it. Next week you’re going to tell your friends/classmates.

        The aims were to (a) introduce interesting and unusual sea creatures, (b) find out more about them, and (c) search online using a kids-friendly website, to practice spellingreading for key information, etc.

        So, like you, there is no singular aim but several that fall under the very broad learning about sea creatures.

    • #8241

      Barbara Bujtás

      The main focus was grammar, the difference between past simple and present perfect. The skill focus was speaking.

      The aim of the lesson was to enable the student to use the past simple tense and the present perfect tense in speaking, it is an exam prep course so fluency is of utmost importance.

      The stages were the following:
      -warm up (general small talk)
      -revision (a vocabulary test with feedback)
      -revision of grammar (controlled grammar practice)
      -remedial work on grammar
      -free practice (speaking: Have you ever …)

      • #8247

        The lesson stages connected logically and transitioned smoothly.

        It can be helpful to introduce the lesson point consistently with the same language each time. With adults who are familiar and/or want to know basic grammatical terms, I may use them also, with examples:

        Today, we are asking each other about interesting and unusual experiences using the present perfect and past simple . For example

        • Have you ever been scuba-diving?
          -> Yes! I’ve been a few times.
        • Have you ever tried bungee-jumping?
          No, but I want to!
        • When did you go?
        • Where did you do it?
        • etc

        Even with adult lessons one-to-one, it can be fun and interesting to use pictures, flashcards or word cards that you can pick and ask each other at random. Involving learners in making them can add opportunities for further language use, too.

    • #9832

      Rhett Burton

      Count to 5 – small hello

      Count to 10 – big hello

      Say hello


      Complete self check in chart

      Dice Roll (1, 2 = walk, 3, 4 = hop, 5, 6 = run)

      Can call mom and say where they are


      Catch the ball

      Throw the Ball

      Pick up the ball


      Sing ABC Phonetics Song (A-G)

      Identify the word by the sound

      Match the letter to the sound

      Play Word / Sound Bingo


      Ask for paper

      Fold and cut the paper

      Make a book with a single piece of A4 paper


      Get, use and put away pencils

      Properly hold a pencil

      Draw shapes

      Write letters


      name color crayons.

      ask for crayons.

      color a picture of choice


      can select and read materials

      use finger to follow text.


      Demonstrate an interest in the game

      Negotiate turn with ‘paper, rock, scissors’

      Play UNO using numbers and colors

      • #9850

        Thanks for sharing the photo and typing it all out.

        If you can introduce it a little to everyone who is not familiar with your context and materials, that would be great. For example, are these the lesson stages (in order?) with the aims/objectives for each stage/activity? And is the overall aim to play UNO and be able to use numbers and colours?

      • #10064

        scott gray

        Love how you incorporate daily life tasks and good manners when teaching.

        I do have a question as you use dice, but I have some sets of D&D dice that I used to use as I had all different types to hit all different numbers. I even had a hundred sided die years ago. Now I just use 2 ten-sided dice to get a hundred.

    • #9952

      Masatoshi Shoji
      1. What was the main focus of the lesson reading – speaking – writing – vocabulary – grammar – listening? Reading
      2. What was the aim of the lesson? To find dates showing the chronology of the story
      3. What were the main stages of the lesson? (Use the names of stages introduced in Activity 3. Reading
      • #9958

        Hi Masatoshi. Was there only one reading activity for your entire lesson or did you do other things, too? What did you do before and after reading, for example? Please refer back to Activity 3 to see what other stages you may have included.

    • #9961

      Masatoshi Shoji

      Before reading: Warm Up Q&A related to the main text without reading the main text
      After reading: comprehension questions and vocabulary presentation

    • #9964

      Jessica Sohn

      The main focus was vocabulary(Day1).

      The aim of the lesson was to introduce a new reading chapter starting with vocabulary.
      (a 3 day reading class divided into Day1:Vocabulary, Day2:Reading, Day3:Comprehension)

      The stages:
      warm up (general small talk with days of the week+ how their day went+what they did)
      introduction(introduce new vocabulary + with the sentences in the book)
      free practice (using games -charades/pictionary/hidden picture game so they can revise the new vocab)
      -if there is more time: i would include preview for reading(day2)

      • #9965

        Thanks Jessica. So it looks like you have presentation and practice stages to start with, plus opportunities in the warm-up for natural conversation and sharing.

    • #10034

      Beverly Anne Suarez

      The main focus of my lesson was grammar. It was a junior high class and we were doing comparisons.

      I started with a warmer, where we played Shiritori in English. It’s a Japanese game where you say a word and the next player says another word using the last sound of the word you said.

      Then, we had speaking/ free practice where we ask them what’s new, and they talk about anything they want to talk about. Then, we review the last lesson and it was just about talking about another person’s what’s new, using he/ she.

      Then, I presented the idea of comparison using “(___) is (____)er than (_____)”. I knew they liked Minecraft and Undertale so I used characters from those games and used them as examples.

      Then, we did controlled practice where I asked them to compare some of the pictures I showed them, and asked them questions like “Which is bigger?” “Who is taller?” So I can elicit the grammar structure from them. At the end, I showed them a picture of my boss and me and asked “Who is older?”. That made them laugh. And lastly, I compared myself to Yoshi, a Mario character and asked them who they think is taller, Yoshi or me, and we found out Yoshi is taller than me, and I asked them to compare Yoshi and my co-teacher, and we found out that my co-teacher is taller. So that made them laugh more.

      • #10038

        Good detail, Bei. Just to confirm, was the main grammar focus comparatives?

        I like how you consistently include a review at or near the beginning of class, regularly personalize examples, and bring humour into your lessons.

        To what extent was the final comparison activity between Yoshi and your co-teacher controlled practice vs free(r) production?

      • #10063

        scott gray

        I love the personalization you get into your lessons and especially Minecraft as very popular with kids. Mine try to get on my PC all the time to get to it. LOL.

        Keep it up!  Just a question though, Did they know most of the adjectives before you were going to teach the comparative or at least use those in the examples you were going to present?


    • #10062

      scott gray

      Well, learning the hard way, I can’t find the posts, so redoing them now.

      The main focus was on students using a story to learn about articles and create their own rule for how to use those articles. There would be listening, reading, and writing with some speaking about the rules.

      The aim was to learn the differences in using a or the.

      Warm up and introduction. Listen to teacher talk about a fairy tale and introduce a and the in a simple translation of Momotaro(Japanese fairy tale) retold by the teacher in simple English.

      Practice(Controlled-Hidden/Discovery). Students take a handout and fill in the blanks with either a, the, or (nothing). After answering questions and maybe providing hints to groups in need. We would all check with either a handout of the answers or written on the board.

      Discussion. Students would get in groups and try to come up with rules why they would use either a, the, or nothing in those spaces. They did not need to use terminology but if they wanted to know I would provide them, however, their coming up with their own terms for this exercise was a mini-goal for this section.


      • #10070

        I love the use of L2 translations of popular and/or culturally-familiar stories (e.g. Momotaro). The familiar content lowers the language load and allows them to more easily focus on the target grammar (article usage).

        I also like the inductive approach* – going from their examples to coming up with rules which they may or may not be familiar with but to different degrees. Getting students to make meaning in their own words is also invaluable and reduced the need for them to ‘decipher’ grammatical explanations full of (new and/or difficult) technical terms.

        Overall, this really makes for both a learning-centred and learner-centred approach!

        One question, how do students who are not used to this (due to a learning history of teacher-led lessons with explanations and translations) tend to react? What challenges might they face and how can we support them better, too?

        *For more on inductive vs deductive learning: https://oupeltglobalblog.com/2015/04/24/inductive-and-deductive-grammar-teaching/

    • #10219

      Naoko Amano

      The main focus of my lesson was vocabulary and grammar at Kindergarten students class. The vocabulary focused on bugs and locations, while the grammar point focused on prepositions.

      The aim of the lesson was to have students use the new language immediately in a safe, easy, fun atmosphere.

      Stages of the lesson were as follows:

      Presentation: I started to introduce names of bugs using about 8 flashcards. Then I showed a picture book and asked them, “Where is the spider?” Using gestures, I am looking for something.

      Task-based Language Teaching Approach (TBLT)
      They started to say “here” or “there” in their native language. (Japanese) Students could not say it in English, so they saw that they had a problem – communication breakdown.

      Presented Solutions: Then I introduced prepositions on/in/under/by and also the phrases like “on the leaf”, “in the grass” and so on.

      Controlled practice: After that, we sang the preposition song. I used to do this before the presentation, but students didn’t know why we were doing that. Doing it here is easy for them because they already practiced the language. Therefore, it is also fun now and relaxing.

      Free Practice: Before the class, I put pictures of bugs on the wall, in a box, under the TV and even on my back and in my pocket. When students noticed them, they tried to tell me where the bugs were. That was so much fun. They were so excited. They yelled Japanese at me, but I ignored them until they told me in English. Soon, students realized that I would respond to them when they spoke English.

      • This reply was modified 1 year, 5 months ago by Naoko Amano.
      • This reply was modified 1 year, 5 months ago by Naoko Amano.
    • #10222

      Sounds great! Love it!

      The lesson stages are linked together well and it’s especially effective when students first notice a real communicative need.

      Great use of a song for controlled practice, too.

      I think you recorded some of it, right? If you’re fine with sharing the link, that’d be a bonus for others to really see what you did.

    • #10348

      Naoko Amano

      Yes, That’s right!
      Here is the link for my lesson.


    • #15326

      Rhett Burton

      I have 60 minutes with my students per class. I try to include reading, writing, listening, and speaking in all my lessons. I usually have several exercises, activities, or tasks that I can do to provide the students’ opportunities to make patterns, topics, and functions more visible. I do have a hard time assessing some exercises, activities, and tasks that I do.

      In my TDV 2 2021 video, I linked a list of animal flashcards to patterns that we have had studied to anchor back to known points. Next, I asked which picture each student wanted. I like to give a range of personal choice. I helped the student negotiate trade between the images they had and the images they want. After that, I provide time to draw and think about the animals. I walked around and had private chats with the students based on how I felt I could provide better support (personalization). Students also had the time and space to think about things they want to produce about their picture. The activity lead to a writing exercise about the animals.

      I want to note that I felt I could have included more body parts into the priming stage. I could have used the whiteboard to scaffold a better transition to the writing stage because my students do not have strong enough phonemic awareness with confidence. I also wish I would have allowed my students to share (talk about) their pictures with their classmates.

    • #16365

      Aiden HANAE

      What was the main focus of the lesson?

      I would say the main focus of the lesson I was doing was vocabulary, and maybe a little bit of listening. I was teaching at a kindergarten, so grammar and writing was lower in priority.  I want them to learn words and phrases so they can use them as building blocks in there later years to come.

      What was the aim of the lesson?

      The aim of this lesson was to teach them new words about shapes, and review words about location (such as on, in, under, behind or next to).

      What were the main stages of the lesson? 

      The stages of the lesson were



      Controlled practice


      Controlled practice

      The second controlled practice combined words we reviewed and just learned, into a game format.

    • #16883

      David Booton

      What was the main focus of the lesson?

      The focus of the lesson was to watch a video for gist meaning, answer some questions that were on a worksheet.

      What was the aim of the lesson?

      The aim was for the students to be introduced to/become familiar with the words used to talk about the circulatory system.

      What were the stages of the lesson?

      Lead-in/presentation – these are sort of linked in that I had the students talk with and draw what they thought the circulatory system looked like

      vocab – the students learned/practiced the vocab they would need to understand the video – this was listening/TPR/practice

      pronunciation work(not planned but it became necessary) – there was some trouble pronouncing “circulatory” so we worked on that for a bit.

      video – the point of the lesson, they watched a video and answered some gist questions.



      • #16945

        Interesting topic! Nice lead-in, starting with what the students know already.

        Nice linking from the lead-in, vocabulary and pronunciation to the video.

        I can appreciate that the word stress, as well as the r/l minimal pair in circulatory, would challenge most Japanese learners. (Laboratory poses a similar challenge, though mispronunciation has a more profound effect!)

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