Walking Stick Blogger

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Blogging the ESL Curriculum Development Process – Part 1: Identifying Tasks

This is an example of my planning process. It began with reviewing the Canadian Language Benchmarks manual, and combining a tally sheet of students’ assessed CLB Levels with a summary of the students’ needs assessments. I also need to consider the timeframe and the length of the lesson when deciding on specific activities and outcomes. Thanks to the review of the students’ CLB levels and their needs assessments, I was able to identify a range of appropriate levels for teaching, and identified a number of tasks broken down by CLB level and skill ttype. In this case, many students require development of their writing skills beyond Level 4. I decided upon Employment Skills as the theme, and then identified a scenario to act as an anchor around which I can plan a series of tasks.

At this point, I reviewed the CLB sample tasks, and asked myself if they align with the development of practical professional skills.

For myself, I would like to focus on activities that practice fluency and accuracy of upper intermediate level learners to develop skills using the telephone, writing emails, taking notes and relaying them accurately, and engaging in a variety of professional networking activities.

Theme: Employment Skills

Scenario: Attending an employment skills fair


Listen to a brief description of topics to be covered during the skills fair workshops – CLB4
Follow directions to locate on a venue map various employer booths for the upcoming employment skills fair – CLB4

listen to phone message changing the schedule of workshops – CLB5
listen to an exchange among colleagues (fellow students) discussing what workshops they prefer – CLB5
follow directions from recorded message on using public transit for getting to destination of event -CLB5
Listen to news report about an event to decide whether to go or not (CLB5)

ask for and note down/locate locations at venue for job fair events on a map – CLB6
Listen to an organizer apologize for cancelling/changing the workshop schedule- CLB6
Follow instructions for taking notes for doing a short report on a company – CLB6
Take simple registration requests for the job fair over the phone – CLB6
Listen to pre-recorded information from a training provider on PD training option – CLB6
Listen to a presentation on job trends given by a local HR professional – CLB6



Initiate a short, informal conversation
Answer the phone and provide information to caller
Give directions to a workplace/venue
Provide detailed instructions on how to register for the event/surf the event web site
Give a brief presentation about an upcoming event
In a small group class discussion plan a potluck event – discuss different options, make suggestions


Introduce a guest speaker to the class
Call to make an appointment to meet an employer for an informational interview
(related tasks for making short telephone calls, clarifying and confirming details)
Making/declining invitations for networking meetings
Give instructions on how and where to find company information online
Phone the job fair organizers for more details about the upcoming event
Answer questions about one’s educational background, work experience and skills in a mock panel interview

Leave a phone message for a colleague with details about an upcoming event and provide directions



Read an invitation to an upcoming event to decide to attend
Read instructions on how to submit an online registration form
Review a resume and compare it to the job posting, and decide if the applicant would get an interview
Review a cover letter and identify how suitable the applicant is for the posting
Read a short new item about local business
Read and interpret a graph showing job growth trends for different occupations in the region


Read an email about news coverage of a community/business event


Read a blog post about a current event – summarize the viewpoint, and give reasons for or against
(will poll students for examples of reading they need practice with, and ask if they want to do a reading circle tutorial)



Write an email invitation to a community leader asking for an informational interview
Write a list of questions you want to ask the interviewee
Write a thank you letter for the meeting
Write an email updating what company research/job research you have done this past week
Write an email to your employer asking to take time off to attend the employment skills fair.
Write an email to the event organizers to change the workshops you signed up for

Take notes from pre-recorded telephone messages
Take notes from promotional flyer/announcements
Write an email to colleagues summarizing the upcoming fair and explain how it would benefit them.


Write an email cancelling a business meeting

Take notes from a short information session about an upcoming event to share with a friend
Take notes about interview tips during a brief employment skills workshop.

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CLBcurriculum developmentLINC 5 to 7reflections on practice

netizenship • March 9, 2015

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