The purpose of the lesson: Describe your family
Size of the class: 40 students
Age: 11-12 years old
The teacher can start the lesson doing a short review of the previous lessons by asking students about their names, age etc. As an introduction to the topic of the lesson the teacher might want to add a few more questions: “Do you have brothers?”, “Do you have sisters?”, “How old is your sister?”, “What does your mother do?” etc. I usually show them a picture of my sister and ask them to guess who she is then I give them more information about her age and her occupation.
In order to describe their family, the students have to know the members of their families. The teacher chooses a student from the class and by asking questions, the teacher draw on the board the family tree of the student.
It is very important students to understand the relation between each member of the family. The teacher points out that all of the family members from the family tree are related to “me”. The teacher can extend the family tree further to uncles, aunts, cousins, nephew etc.
Be aware that in Vietnam, a cousin for example, is introduced as a brother/sister. Even a close friend is always introduced as a brother/sister. This is because the friendship is emphasized, not the family relation. The term “cousin” creates confusion and it is not used in daily life.
The students complete their own family tree following the example from the board. The teacher might want to ask students to add more information about each member of the family (age, occupation etc.) A dictionary can be useful for occupations!
At this point students should be able to talk about their families. An example provided by the teacher is always welcomed. Before talking, the students write down a short description of their family members.
In pairs, students read for each other their family description or a student ask questions about the other student family members (“How old is your father?”, “What does your mother do?” etc.)