Remember to aways tie it to their interests!! In the beginning of the year teachers need to understand where their students are before they can start teaching in order to start with something they don't know creating anxiety and frustration or something they already know having students getting bored! Here are some suggestions to start with.
- An oral interview to gage their speaking and listening skills
- Have them discuss with a partner about 5 interesting things that they did that summer, then individually write about each one day a week.
- Have them share one interesting thing with the class.
- Create a "Cloze exam" to better understand students understanding of grammar and how you can tie their previous knowledge into future lessons.
- Have a discussion about their "Hopes and Dreams" having them write about them and sharing them with the class. These are a great place to start building lesson around that will keep students focused on the tasks at hand!
It is important to remember there is no substitute for reviewing actual student writing for students' use of grammar and conventions!!!
- Journals are a great way of seeing students' progress throughout the year. Start by generating a list of ideas with the students based their interests that they can refer too.
- Having Pen Pals from another state or country are a way to not only learn writing but learn about different cultures, regions, and people!
- Continuing to use the "Cloze exam" is also a great way to understand the student's increased language flexibility.