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Countries and Nationalities for Young English Learners Essay

Lesson Plan

This lesson will be taught to kindergarteners aged between 3 and 5 who are Hispanic English Language Learners (ELLs). The content area of choice will include countries and nationalities, which is an effective tool to develop learners’ vocabulary while enhancing their knowledge on the topic. The following in the SIOP Lesson Plan developed for the identified sample of students:

STANDARDS:Students are to interact with one another in meaningful ways. Collaborative: “Exchanging information and ideas with others through oral collaborative conversations on a range of topics” (SL.K.1, 6; L.K.1, 6); Interpretive: “listen actively to spoken English” (SL.K.1-3); Productive: “selecting and applying vocabulary and language to effectively convey ideas” (W.K.5; SL.K.4, 6; L.K.1, 5-6) (California State Board of Education, 2012, p. 27).
LESSON TOPIC:Countries and Nationalities
Language: talk about previous knowledge on nationalities, telling about their nationalities, asking each other questions about countries and nationalities.
Content: students will learn how to name ten countries and nationalities, identify which nationality belongs to which region, and learn about different geographic regions.
LEARNING STRATEGIES: critical thinking tasks and scaffolding of instruction.
KEY VOCABULARY: country, nationality, geography, American, African American, Hispanic, Mexican.
MATERIALS: visual materials (images, videos), word wall, map.
(Building background): collecting visual materials to illustrate the vocabulary (e.g., images, cartoons), collecting tangible objects associated with countries and nationalities. A word wall for vocabulary development; questioning to determine what ELLs already know.
(Language and content objectives, comprehensible input, strategies, feedback)
Engaging students in meaningful activities, keeping the pace of the lesson active, monitoring ELL’s comfort levels. Task modeling, restatement, repetition of key points, reviews and previews of assignments.
(Meaningful activities, interaction, strategies, practice and application, feedback)
Activities to integrate skills of ELLs (listening and speaking): assignments for student groups, work in pairs, and small projects. Pair and small-group activities for assignments, questioning, turn-taking, and clarifications of tasks.
(Review objectives and vocabulary, assess learning)
Students’ engagement in the lesson will be reviewed through observation; assessment of reached language and content objectives will be implemented with the help of a short speaking test.
Asking students to learn about other nationalities and countries outside the classroom.


The SIOP model has become a useful framework that teachers can employ in the presentation of the content to second language learners through tools that enhance accessibility and comprehension (Kareva & Echevarria, 2013). Therefore, each feature of the model is targeted at making sure that students’ language skills (listening, speaking, reading, and writing) are improved in the most beneficial way possible. It is also important to mention that the alignment of the SIOP model with specific learning standards of the state, in which the learners are taught, is extremely beneficial. In the context of the specific lesson plan presented above, the SIOP model was aligned with the California Department of Education standards (CA ELD) to provide students with opportunities of attaining academic content while also engaging in English learning (Vogt & Echevarria, 2015).

In the presented lesson plan, there is a clear orientation on the target audience of Hispanic ELLs aged between three and five years old. Focusing the lesson on the topic of countries and nationalities is a way to engage ELLs into the conversation that could use their background knowledge while acquiring new information (Ziegenfuss, Odhiambo, & Keyes, 2014). In the lesson preparation, the teacher aims to help students benefit from the learning process through supplementary materials and such tools as visuals or tangible objects, which provide a starting point for the learning of new concepts. At the building background stage, the teacher will determine the level of ELLs’ acquaintance with the subject, which is supported by the SIOP model (Folorunsho, 2014).

Determining previous knowledge is essential for discovering gaps, misinformation, and overall competence that will guide future lessons. Comprehensible input is associated with ensuring that students understand the new concepts and can use language in their conversations with each other. In the lesson plan, this point was accounted for through the use of SIOP tools that make the presentation of information easier and more comprehensible to ELL. Strategies for improving language acquisition within the SIOP model are associated with capitalizing on the existing knowledge in students’ native language and transferring them to the EL. The lesson plan proposed scaffolding as a tool for providing instructional support to ELLs; also, it is essential to evoke students’ critical thinking and ask them questions that may require the application of both first and second language skills.

Interactions between ELLs during a lesson are vital to successful language acquisition, and the SIOP model proposes to use interactions for practicing the vocabulary and enhancing comprehension. The lesson plan proposed pair and small-group activities to improve collaboration between students and help them clarify the new concepts. During practice and application, it is essential to ensure that teachers present new material in an accessible way that would not restrict learning. Instead of using the lecture-like material, the lesson proposed group assignments, partner work, and small projects to facilitate students language development. When delivering a lesson, teachers should monitor the pace, ELLs’ comfort levels, and engagement levels to modify the assignments in a way that could keep everyone on track. Lastly, reviews and assessments will be conducted during the lesson to determine areas of improvement and enhance comprehension, as proposed by the SIOP model.


California State Board of Education. (2012). Web.

Folorunsho, A. (2014). Web.

Kareva, V., & Echevarria, J. (2013). Using the SIOP model for effective content teaching with second and foreign language learners. Journal of Education and Training Studies, 1(2), 239-248.

Vogt, M., & Echevarria, J. (2015). Reaching English learners: Aligning the ELA/ELD framework with SIOP. The California Reader, 49(1), 23-33.

Ziegenfuss, R., Odhiambo, E., & Keyes, C. (2014). How can we help students who are English language learners succeed? Current Issues in Middle Level Education, 19(1), 58-62.

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"Countries and Nationalities for Young English Learners." IvyPanda, 25 Sept. 2020, ivypanda.com/essays/countries-and-nationalities-for-young-english-learners/.

1. IvyPanda. "Countries and Nationalities for Young English Learners." September 25, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/countries-and-nationalities-for-young-english-learners/.


IvyPanda. "Countries and Nationalities for Young English Learners." September 25, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/countries-and-nationalities-for-young-english-learners/.


IvyPanda. 2020. "Countries and Nationalities for Young English Learners." September 25, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/countries-and-nationalities-for-young-english-learners/.


IvyPanda. (2020) 'Countries and Nationalities for Young English Learners'. 25 September.

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