ESL Lesson Plan: Working With the Alphabet

  • This exercise is a good way to start off the year, but it can be used at any time. It is always essential to be able to spell correctly in English especially when using the phone.
  • The worksheet—composed of two different versions on two different pages—can be used with any level from A2 to even C2.
  • The activity functions as pair work.
  • There are two different pages marked "A" and "B". Give the one page "A" and one page "B" to each pair (cf. PDF files below). Make sure the students only look at their own page.
  • After going over the alphabet with the students and explaining how to pronounce the punctuation marks and other signs at the top of the page, the students will start spelling to each other.
  • The first student will spell one line, and his/her partner will write it down. If the latter has problems understanding, he/she will ask to hear the letters and signs again. When the student taking the dictation has understood the line, he/she will say it out loud—and will then spell a line to his/her partner. The students thus take turns spelling and writing down the different lines.
  • If they have problems they will ask the teacher, but normally they manage well on their own.
  • If a pair of students finishes before the others, they will look for other words or addresses to spell to each other. There is a space at the bottom of each page for this additional activity.

This exercise takes about 20 minutes. Don’t be surprised to see smiles and hear laughter while they are doing this activity. Students will be laughing at their own mistakes, and that is the best way to learn and to overcome difficulties!

Documents for this spelling exercise:

PDF - 86 kb
Spell to Partner
Two pages of a spelling exercise. Each student works with either page "A" or page "B".

To get the MS Word versions that you can customize to suit the needs of your students please have a look at the DVD/ebook "QualityTime-ESL:The Digital Resource Book" (€29) or the downloadable pack "Back to the Basics: Volume I "Pair Work" (€1.99) at the store.

Please note that the DVD of "QualityTime-ESL: The Digital Resource Book" contains 1,500 files plus all the materials in the downloadable packs (Podcast Scripts and Worksheets, "Listening Comprehension Exercises" and Keys, as well as the 25-page booklet "Back to the Basics: Vol 1: Pair Work Activities). There is 3.9 GB on the DVD.

If you buy some of these downloadable packs to try them out and then wish to purchase the DVD of "QualityTime-ESL: The Digital Resource Book" for €29, we will refund you a good part of what you paid previously.

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