Cómico. Interesante. Loco.

Those are the words my students always use to describe themselves… and their friends…and their school…and the video clips I show them. Ha! It can be hard to encourage some students to expand their vocabulary. If they know a few cognates for each unit topic they can still answer questions/give basic info. I mean, technically, what if everyone they know is funny, interesting, and crazy?!?

For the family unit I experimented a little to see if could get students to break out of their comfort zone and use new descriptions. Now, I’ll usually set aside some time to let student find their own vocab for the topic. Do they look up the wrong words in a dictionary and mistranslate sometimes? Yes, but deciding what words they need and searching for them is part of the learning itself. It’s good for them!

Anyways, back to my experiment. I was out sick for a day about a week or so before spring break. My students were learning how to describe their family. They knew adjectives, but really only words that describe themselves. I used WORDLE (for the first time) and created a jumbled mess of adjectives and left these instructions.



It was a simple sub plan, but I could tell students learned something new that day. Their end of unit assessments talked about “loud” and “strict” and “relaxed” family members. (I still saw “crazy” but there was more detail along with it.) They don’t always have the motivation to look up a ton of new words, and if that is the case with some of your students… Try a WORDLE. It’s a great way to get less motivated students learning. Give them a few simple tasks to get them thinking and they will pick up what they can handle.

A bunch of verbs: Circle 5 you love to do. Highlight 3 you do when you’re sick. Box 5 your mom always tells you to do.

Foods: Circle 5 foods you should eat but don’t. Highlight 5 foods you have eaten this week. Box 3 foods you eat for special occasions.

Months and holidays: circle months that you and family members have bdays. Box the months we don’t have school. Highlight your 3 favorite holidays.

If you’ve used WORDLE in another way – please share with us! I’d love to hear it.
( I know I could use more individual activities that require less writing! )