Saturday, 17 November 2012

Collaborative Writing and Peer Correction

(William Turner: Landscape with a River Bay in the Backgraound.)

This activity is great for reviewing vocabulary as well as improving writing fluency and accuracy.

Language Level: Pre-Intermediate and above
Learner Type: teens and adults
Time: 30 minutes
Topic: Vocabulary Review; writing fluency; peer correction
Language: Vocabulary; general grammar review

Preparation, materials and equipment

1. For this activity you will need a blank piece of paper for each student. Alternatively, students can use their notebooks.

Part 1: Introduction

2. Spider diagram target previously taught vocabulary on the whiteboard; review and drill.

Part 2: Instruction

3. Tell students that they have to work as a team to make a story; this is done in 10 stages: in the first stage they have to write for 30 seconds and then pass the paper to their left; in the second stage they write for 1 minute and then pass; in the third stage one minute thirty seconds etc. Continue until ten stages have been completed.

4. Write a sentence starter on the whiteboard for each student in the class: eg. “Suddenly” or “And then something wonderful happened”. The teacher should be creative at this stage.

Part 3: Productive Skills

5. Students continue the sentence and then pass their piece of paper or notebook to their left.


Point out that students need to read and correct the work passed to them before adding their own work.

6. This process continues with the teacher timing the students on a stopwatch. The teacher should also encourage slower students to speed up.

7. The process continues until students have gone through ten stages.

By the end of the productive stage, students will be energized and attentive.

Part 4: Peer Correction

8. Tell students they have 30 seconds to correct the work in front of them using a red pen.

9. After 30 seconds, students pass the corrected work to their left and peer correct again.

10. This process is continued until students have their original starter word in front of them.

Part 5: Oration

11. Individually, students read each collaborative story and teacher records them.

Part 6: Vote

12. Students vote on which story they liked best and why.

Part 7: Teacher Correction

13. Teacher explains any common errors on the white board.

Follow up:

14. Email the most popular story to the students; students can use the video for intensive listening practice at home, writing the story as they hear it.

15. Students can translate the story voted best in to L1 and translate it back into L2 at home.

16. Students can continue the story at home and present it at the beginning of the next lesson.

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