Using the Performance Continuum in Planning Activities

Steps 3 and 4 of the teaching/learning cycle involve designing a learning activity to address the real-life concerns of learners and developing a plan to capture evidence and report learning. At this stage teachers can develop their own planning tool or use one described in Step 3. Below are some suggested steps for using the performance continuum as a tool to complete this planning guide.

  1. Start to fill out a planning guide for the activity. In many cases it is possible to do this with students. You can brainstorm with students what to list in the left-hand column “What do we need to know?” You can move back and forth between the goal-specific knowledge, skills and strategies and the dimensions of performance at the level you have selected until you have covered all the main activities you will need to reach the goal. You will find that some activities may cover several dimensions of performance while others may address just one sub-skill within a single dimension. With students at the beginning and intermediate ESOL level, however, you may decide to fill out the plan on your own and share only a simplified version with them.

  2. The second step involves filling out the middle column of the Planning Guide by thinking about the activities you will plan. Consider how much time each activity will take and how much time overall you have.

  3. In Monika’s case, she used the planning guide primarily as a tool for her own planning. She began by looking at the knowledge, skills and strategies dimensions at Performance Level 2 for Listen Actively and considering how they applied to what her students needed to learn. In addition to more vocabulary and question and response patterns in the simple past tense, Monika also decided that she needed to teach students strategies for indicating understanding and appreciation of comments made by co-workers, how to -demonstrate interest by giving feedback and asking follow up questions, (such as rephrasing), and how to use their background knowledge to respond with one’s own similar personal experiences. She developed a series of activities and roles plays to use over two days to teach these skills.

Planning Guide

Standard: Listen Actively
Goal:Understand and respond to conversations with co-workers about their weekends

What do we need to know?

How can we learn it?

How will we show we know it?
Understand and use vocabulary related to having a casual conversation about one’s weekend. (KSS 1)

Understand linguistic and social conventions related to making polite small talk at work and providing appropriate responses. (KSS 2)

Session 1- 30-60 min.:
Brainstorm possible things co-workers might do on the weekend using past tense, e.g. I went to a party, I went to the park, I went to a movie, I went to the mall, I went shopping, I went to a restaurant. I stayed home.
Teacher observation log

To see a complete version of this Planning Guide, click here.

Click here to print out a blank Word version of the Planning Guide to use in your program.

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