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Alphabet Dictation


Today's Snack: Here's a fun activity to do in pairs. So, for a healthy snack, eat a . . . PEAR! If you've never had a little can of pear juice, now's the time to try it, too.




Newspapers | Scratch paper and pencils | Divide into pairs



Here's a fun way to help your students make the English alphabet more automatic and firmly implanted.


First, sing the alphabet song together. Write the alphabet letters on the board, or have them displayed and point them out.


Ask the students to divide up into pairs of two.


Hand each pair of students a section of newspaper, a piece of scratch paper and a pencil. One student takes the newspaper, and the other takes the paper and pencil.


They are to take turns dictating the alphabet letters of the headlines to each other. The one with the newspaper will say the letters aloud, and the other one will write the letters on the scratch paper.


They can say "space" in between words, and they can say aloud punctuation marks, though they are fairly rare in headlines.


For a headline such as "City Council Approves Building," the student who goes first would dictate, in English, "C - i - t - y (space) C - o - u - n - c - i - l (space). . ." and so on.


The other student should write down the letters into words as they are dictated.


After five minutes, the students can compare the printed headlines with the written versions on the scratch paper. Then switch sides.


If students are willing, you can repeat for as long as you'd like, switching sides every 5 minutes.


Which pair of students can dictate and record the most headlines with no errors in the time period?


By Susan Darst Williams ESL 2012

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