Lesson 5 in the Hi! Friends 2 book is a weak lesson. It is an attempt to build upon the Hi! Friends 1 lesson about wanting things. Back in 5th grade, you see, kids are supposed to learn statements about things they like with “I like…” which is then expanded into “Don’t” negations, Yes/No questions, and open ended What based questions. After all this foundation is laid, the book thinks you can just spend a single lesson telling kids to swap out “like” for “want” and they’ll just get it. But, they never do. It doesn’t stick. Then, come this lesson, they’re supposed to attach verbs to “want” and say things they want to do rather than just things in noun form that they want. Because of this lesson weakness, I’ve reworked a lot of the activities from this lesson and its Eigo Note predecessor that just sort of give information to students but don’t demand they produce a lot of complicated language. It works… ok. [STATUS: IN PROGRESS]
A preview of my coming write up on my minimalist take on the 5th grade restaurant section from Hi! Friends 1, Lesson 9: “What would you like?” for Laura. For the last piece of this lesson I throw caution to the wind and just have the antsy, end of the year 5th graders play pretend restaurant. After a quick demo, and with some setup, each group of kids at the front of the room becomes a restaurant, and all the kids at the back of the room become hungry patrons. Printables below the cut.
I’m not gonna lie. The grammar in this chapter is all over the place. What do you study? Please! Ok, I get it. We’re supposed to progress from “What do you like?” in Lesson 5 to “What do you want?” in Lesson 6 and then end up here at Lesson 8 with “What do you study?” But, it’s a bogus question. Elementary school kids all study the same things together everyday. Why would they ask each other what they study? There’s just no good way to work that into a real life communication scenario for a kid. So, I flip the script. For Lesson 8, my focus is on vocabulary building, making direct statements with “is”, and speaking English as part of a speech or presentation.
In my short stint as a junior high ALT, one of the most popular review games was Jeopardy. The school I was first assigned to had Jeopardy games to review at the end of almost every chapter. But, they say, Jeopardy games are 100% language based and there’s no way to adapt Jeopardy to the elementary level. Not so! I have done it and here are my categories.
This lesson is a pretty focused one. I only take three weeks to complete it. The breakdown for those three weeks is very direct. I devote one class period to the places vocabulary. I devote the next class period to directions. And, in the last of the set puts those two things together. Unfortunately, the text book is pretty limiting for this Lesson. The only content they provide is the same map, done two ways. But, you can fudge the boundaries a bit.
This lesson continues the Yes/No Question grammar pattern from the previous lesson to its logical next step: Open ended questions. It does so by bringing colors and shapes together and applying those to clothing choices. The old Eigo Note series went all out with complete outfits. This version sticks to just t-shirt designs. And, it ends on a general interview activity that combines the Lesson 4 vocabulary with the open ended question grammar. Lesson 4 and 5 together are some of the strongest in the entire Hi! Friends textbook series. As such, my lesson plans for them center highly around the textbook activities, with one large scale project I made myself.
When I first started out, the birthday lesson was very intimidating. It was basically a big vocabulary dump. But, over time I figured it all out and now this lesson is my strongest of the book. Using a musical introduction, a logical number pattern, and a slow roll out, all of my students know months, dates, and their birthdays front, back, and sideways. This lesson uses pretty much every activity in the textbook and supplements them with original games and challenges.
The first lesson of the 6th grade textbook tries to review a lot of things while sprinkling in a few new things. In 5th grade, the kids practice numbers up to 20. This lesson takes that to 100. In 5th grade, the book introduces ‘I like’ and ‘I want’ with corresponding negation and questions. This lesson adds ‘I have’ to the mix. And, the 5th graders get a review of the upper case letters that everyone must learn to use a computer. This lesson adds in lower case. It’s the first lesson of the textbook, but it packs a punch. So, I stretch it out a full four weeks.
The first lesson in the first Hi! Friends book doesn’t contain much difficult grammar or vocabulary and as a result is a great opportunity to get students used to the textbook, you as a formal teacher, and their new classmates. Though the official lesson plans recommend something like three or four lessons per chapter, in my opinion this lesson is best as a succinct two-parter.