Green Transport Elementary Language Lesson

Green Transport Elementary Language Lesson

A lesson plan by Rob Ansell

Rob was the first person to take the revamped course ‘Language Teaching for the Planet’. Not only is he a great person to share ideas about green language teaching with, but he also produced such a great lesson plan for his final assignment that I had to ask him if we could post it here on ELTsustainable, and he agreed.

Rob is a teacher in Shanghai, he teaches a lot of young learners and elementary students, and he is passionate about outdoor learning. Furthermore, he’s a blogger, and I highly recommend that you read the post on his blog Six Ways to Get Outside this Outdoor Classroom Day.

Why green transport in elementary language classes?

Transport is a topic that comes up frequently in young learner classes as it’s common, everyday language. Some variation on this topic has come up in every school I’ve worked at. A car is a car. It’s a red car. I go to school on foot. But often we don’t really think any deeper than that.

In fact, teaching about types of transport and getting around is a great way to add a sustainability element to your young learner classes and give students agency beyond the classroom. Not only do they get a chance to think critically about their choices, personalize language, but they get to make an impact across the school.

This lesson is based on common ways of getting around town, specifically to school, but it can be adapted to other points in your curriculum. It aims to give even beginner students empowerment over lesson outcomes and life choices. We can all make a difference in our own way

Background to this lesson

In every school where I’ve taught beginner students, this topic comes up. By applying ELT Sustainable principles, the lesson become not only greener, but added space for critical thinking and collaboration, making choices, and reaching consensus, with a dogme element to cap it off, all of which increased student engagement.

Level: Beginner / Low elementary/A1. Ideal for young learners

Approximate timing: 90 minutes

Preparation and materials: Flashcards, survey, video or story, Sample posters

Outcomes / Lesson Aims

Vocabulary Aims: Students will learn 8 vocabulary words related to transport (car, bike, (school) bus, motorbike, scooter, train, subway, on foot

Language Aims: Students will be able to ask and answer the question: How do you go to school? / I go to school by ___/on foot.

Outdoor Aims: Students will complete a ‘transport’ survey

Environmental Aims: Students will ‘rank order’ the forms of transport. Students will decide whether or not their classmates’ journeys to school are good for the environment or not. Students will create a poster to advertise a ‘Walk/Bike to School Day’

Notes: The vocabulary can be adapted to your needs.

Lesson Materials

This is the post that keeps giving! Access the lesson notes and PowerPoint slides here.

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How do you view transport through a sustainability lens in your lessons? Please share your ideas in the comments or via the contact page!

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