Language Skills Related Task Assignment Form

I think the language skills topic on the CELTA is incredibly useful. As someone who rarely uses textbooks, I’m always searching for authentic reading and listening materials to use in class. Topic 3 on the CELTA gave me a solid overview of how to plan a receptive skills lesson, and the basics I learnt from this module still underpin my practice.

I’ve written an overview of the assignment and a few tips below. Here is a copy of my assignment, and here is a link to the authentic text on the BBC website.

What do I have to do?

Basically this, as the CELTA syllabus states:

That’s a snippet from the CELTA handbook. It only mentions the criteria for reading lessons, but there’s a breakdown for the other skills too. You’ll find this on page 8, and further info on page 17.

So, you have to prove you can do all of the above in a written assignment. This means designing your own lesson based on an authentic text (reading or listening). You must include opportunities in your lesson for students to also practise their productive skills (speaking or writing).

The assignment outline I was given was something like this:

Total words: 1000

Task:Choose one authentic text from the options your tutor will give you

  • Consider your students needs, ability, etc.
  • Don’t adapt or grade the text – if you do then it’s not authentic

Part 1: justify your choice of text (150 words)

  • Why is it suitable for your learners? Reference your background reading (Harmer, Scrivener, etc.)

Part 2:Receptive skill task design (550 words)

  • Talk about how you will introduce the text topic
  • Design an initial reading task for the students (e.g. a gist task)
  • Talk about any vocabulary that you need to pre-teach
  • Design a task where students read for specific detail
  • Explain what the tasks achieve and why they are suitable/useful. Mention background reading when you do this

Part 3: Productive skill task design (300 words)

  • Think of a follow-up task based on the text. This should be either a speaking or a writing activity
  • Write a little rationale on why you’ve chosen this task, how it exploits the text, why is it good for your learners, etc.

That’s an abridged version of the assignment, you’ll no doubt get more detailed info from your tutor, but that is pretty much it.

Tips for task design

My lesson was for upper-intermediate learners.

Part 2: for a lead-in, get the students to talk about the topic. My text was about crazy things that people do while they are sleepwalking. What better way to get students interested in the text than having them discuss that very thing?

What crazy things might people do while they sleepwalk?

I got their ideas up on the board

If you do something like this then you have the basis of your first task.

You have 2 minutes to read the text. Does the text mention any of your ideas on the board?

Students scan the text for relevant information, but also they read for general meaning (gist) as the topics above may appear in the text but worded differently.

I find this is a great initial task for reading/listening texts. Using student ideas gives them a bit of investment in the text too. I use this all the time:

(Another CELTA lesson based on a listening text about New Zealand)

Lead-in: what do you know about New Zealand? (elicit and board responses)

Orientate students to text

Gist Task: Are any of your ideas mentioned in the text?

(A lesson I made last year on a listening text about biscuits injuring people)

Lead-in: what injuries might you get from biscuits (elicit and board responses)

Orientate students to text

Gist Task: Are any of your ideas mentioned in the text?

You can find another example in my lesson about Boudica

Detail task:

True or False questions are generally a good idea for a detail task. I won’t go into much detail here as you’ll get plenty of input about this on your course, but what I would say is this. T/F questions don’t always need a clear answer– you can manipulate your questions in such a way that will provoke discussion among students. By making the answer to a question slightly ambiguous, students may express their opinions, and in doing so they

a) might show a deeper understanding of the text

b) engage more in the text and topic

c) practise more English!


You can see an example of this in my assignment. Another idea is to include a question which may involve your pre-taught vocabulary. This is a good way to check that they really did understand it!

Part 3: On reflection, I think my productive skills task was a bit rubbish to be honest. You could do better I’m sure. However, whether it’s good or not, you can still get a good mark if you justify WHY you chose that task. My task involved creativity, my students were very creative, so…

a) it was relevant to the learners

b) it showed I learnt a bit about my learners in previous classes

c) it showed that I used what I learnt to inform my practice

So, I guess my main tip for this assignment is to justify everything you do. Think carefully about what you’re doing and why you’re doing it. Mention your learners throughout the assignment – think about what they gain from the tasks you’ve set. Get a few quotes in the assignment from experts but don’t go overboard – 1000 words isn’t much. Finally, remember what you do in this assignment as it’s extremely useful when you’re starting out!

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Posted in CELTA tips and tagged CELTA, efl, elt, IH Budapest, language skills, language skills assignment, reading for gist, receptive skills lesson, teacher training, tefl on by Peter Pun. 12 Comments

Language skills related assignment Essay examples

991 WordsNov 24th, 20134 Pages

Language related tasks.

1. …everything that has happened to us during the day. (grammar)

The has happened in this grammar structure is an intransitive verb as there is no action attached to the verb. This is the present perfect tense it is used to describe actions or events that are complete, but have a connection with the present. (Swan, M. 2004:438).

Concept questions (CQs):

Are the events finished? Yes.
Is there an action attached to the verb? No
Is the day in the past? No.


Auxiliary verb + past participle of intransitive verb has happened

Has is the 3rd person singular present indicative of have. Happened is the past participle of happen.

Pronunciation.…show more content…

Solution: Use CQs to check understanding and elicit examples of put on, put out and put up in context.
2. Problem: Students may confuse this meaning of put off with the meaning of put off in different contexts for instance to stop someone concentrating.
Solution: Use CQs to check understanding of correct meaning and elicit example of someone being put off their food. For instance “I was put off my food by dirty plates.”
3. Problem: The students may not pronounce the linking sound between put and off.
Solution: Mark the linking sound on the board and drill with the students.

4. …we suffer hallucinations and eventually die. (lexis)

The meaning of eventually is after a period of time, the final or ultimate event.
(Fergusson et al, 2000:209).

Concept Questions (CQs).
Will we die immediately? No.
Will we die after a period of time? Yes.

Other examples: At the end of the marathon the runners eventually finished. After three weeks preparation we eventually played the game.
Extension: We say eventually to express that we have waited for a period of time before an outcome or result.

Eventually is an adverb.
Eventually is usually followed by a verb, eventually die, eventually finish. So eventually is transitive.

Pronunciation. 
…we suffer hallucinations and eventually die. /ɪventjuəli/

There are 5 syllables and the first is stressed.
The fourth syllable is a schwa /ə/

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