Muzzy – Months and Seasons

Again, months and seasons might be a new concept to my students even in their own native language. I simply approach this subject as if I were teaching an American child months and seasons for the first time.

Russian seasons begin on the first of their respective months, which is easier to remember and oddly meteorologically accurate.

There’s no magic here. First we must define the season, then write out the months that go with them. Then help the student bring meaning to the months by identifying important times, such as their birthday and New Years. Luckily Russian month names correspond to English ones with little derivation.

However, months are long words with strange spellings. If the student is at an appropriate level, I will drill spelling. But not at first. I want them to be able to say the names of the months and seasons first. Here’s an example of a lesson with my trusted white board (Necessary Tools).

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I have written the months. They must identify the season it belongs to. The words for the seasons are entirely new, and therefore I give them a trick. They don’t have to write out the word, but draw a symbol for the season. Then I mark which ones were incorrect. I then give a list of the months in order and listed with their respective seasons. They have to correct themselves. Their eyes dart all over these boards, checking and verifying. This relatively simple exercise has fast meaningful results. By the next lesson, they are writing out the months and seasons on their own.

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Picture Dictionary

Ideally I want my students to learn organically, like they learn their native language.  What do I mean by organically? I mean by exposure to real things and real situations. I don’t want to open a dictionary and tell them apple is яблоко. I want to show them a real, juicy apple and say “apple.” While this isn’t always possible, it is what I strive for.

An invaluable resource is a good picture dictionary. It should simply be a good picture representation and the English word next to it, without any translation. I have used several in the past including huge coffee table sized books, but I’ve yet to find a good one for sale in my local area. In the meantime I have a great website:

English Worksheets – http://www.englishwsheets.com/ I like that the vocabulary is divided by subject and they have many, many subjects.

Example: Daily Routine Pictionary Worksheet.

These sheets are great for creating lesson plans and they are standard sized so they are great for cutting up and turning into cards.

The can be used for games such as Memory, Hangman, Charades, Pictionary, and Concentration.

Season & Weather

I love Cookie Monster!

How’s the weather?
What’s the weather like today? is a great conversation starter at the beginning of class.

We combined this lesson with Paper Doll and Clothes to learn our seasons, weather, and clothes.

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