Word Choice Lesson Plan 2 - Word Search Strategy Training

Created by Jin Kim (Spring, 2012)

Students will be able to...
  •      Use Google, Word and Phrase. Info, Corpus of Contemporary American English (COCA) as reference tools when choosing the “right word” to use in academic writing
  •       Recognize important considerations for successful word search using the reference tools above
·         Students & Teachers: Register (free) for http://www.wordandphrase.info/frequencyList.asp (This would also allow them access to http://corpus.byu.edu/coca/ since they can use the same email and password to log into both websites). Bring the copy of Word Choice Diagnostic Test they took in the previous class.   
·         Teachers: Familiarize yourself with two main reference tools for this lesson COCA and its new interface (Word and Phrase. Info). Use COCA Tutorial to study on your own.
Note: you may share this tutorial with students as well after today’s lesson if desired.

Teacher Instructions and Tasks:

[10 minutes] Introduction of Lesson Objectives  

Introduce students to the objectives of today’s lesson stated above and explain to them that we are going to use the examples from Word ChoiceDiagnostic Test to demonstrate how to use different reference tools to prevent different word choice errors without relying on our intuition. You may also tell your students the following note about how they should approach the matter of using reference tools for word choice problems.

(Note: as non-native speakers, students’ intuition for choosing the right words is not yet fully developed and there is also L1 inhibition in their judgment. Nonetheless, building a reliable intuition for choosing the right words through comprehensive reading is the ultimate solution to preventing word choice problems since using reference tools like Google or COCA can only be effective when students already know at least which word sounds somewhat wrong or awkward)

Ask students to open Google.com and log into http://www.wordandphrase.info/frequencyList.asp website.

[40 minutes] Word Choice Problem-Solving Practice

Walk students through Word Choice ProblemSolving Guide. Use the key to guide them step by step. I recommend you to share this key handout after class for those students who want to review the search processes at home.

Homework: Find three "word choice" problems. Solve the problem using Google, http://www.wordandphrase.info/frequencyList.asp, or http://corpus.byu.edu/coca/.
Name your homework file as
First name_word choice homework

To view students' homework and teacher feedback samples, visit here.  
To view ESL 115 class survey results of this lesson, visit here
To view a teaching reflection written after this lesson, visit here.

Supplementary materials: