Monday, December 27, 2010

Starting Class on Time

Purpose: It’s important to start class on time, even if only half of your students are there! Starting on time sets expectations about when students should arrive. Students who arrive early or on time can work independently, or in pairs, on review activities, and verify their answers on their own.

Preparation time: This depends on which activity you’re planning, but remember that once you prepare the materials, they can be used over and over again. Also, think about asking students to help with some of the preparation. This can be a learning activity in itself.

Materials: 3 X 5 or 4 X 6 index cards, markers, pens, pencils

I. Practicing Spelling and Vocabulary

  • Pair dictations from flash cards or spelling lists
  • Put word cards in alphabetical order
  • Sort vocabulary cards
    • Into word groups - words related to weather, words related to jobs, words that are nouns, etc.
    • Sort adjective cards into 1 or 2 syllable words (great for teaching comparative and superlative).
  • Write two statements on the board.
Minnesota is ___________________.(adjective)

Minnesota has __________________. (noun)

Give one student (the “teacher”) 5-8 flash cards that are all true about Minnesota.

The other students use the flash cards to make a sentence, using the models on the board. Write the correct sentence on the back of each flash card. The “teacher” affirms or corrects his/her students. As students advance, make a new set of cards and change the model, for example, making the statement negative or using the question form.

II. Drilling

  • Preposition Cards - Write sentences on the fronts of the cards with a blank where the preposition should be. For example, “He works ___ night”. On the backs of the cards, write the appropriate preposition, in this case, “at”. One student takes the role of teacher, shows the front of the card to the student(s) and affirms or corrects the response.
  • Verb Cards - Make a set of verb phrase cards: work at Pizza Hut, sit in the chair, drive a car, etc. Write a model on the board: He is working at Pizza Hut. Students work through the cards, following the model.

Variations:

· Change “he” to “they, I, we”, etc.

· Change the model to practice present tense, the negative, a question, or past tense.

· Regular present and past tense pronunciation:

On the back of each card, write the final sound of the present tense, third person singular: -s, -z, or -ez. For regular verbs, write the final sound of the past tense: -d, -t, or -id.

wash the clothes

-ez -t

play with children

-z -d







· Drill irregular past tense with flash cards. Write the present tense on the front and the past form on the back. One partner says the verb in the present tense and the other writes it in the past. The student with the cards checks the other’s work.

· Add in irregular verb phrases as in model above.

III. Checking Homework

Make a transparency of the homework page. Have it projected on the board or wall when students arrive. Alternatively, write sentences on the board. Ask each student as they come in to choose one that they are confident of, and write it on the board or the transparency. Those who haven’t finished, use the time to finish. Ask those who have finished to edit the work on the board, checking for capitalization, punctuation, etc.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Pro Con Improv



Purpose: To encourage advanced-level ESL and GED students to use transition phrases in conversation. This activity will help students use more academic language in speaking and in writing.

Prep Time: 10 – 15 minutes

Materials: none

Preparation: Based on the content of past lessons and learner interest, choose a number of subjects that students may choose from. Think about a topic you would like to speak about as you model the activity. Write down examples to illustrate the transition words you’ll introduce at the beginning of the lesson.

Procedure:

I do it:

1. Introduce the idea of transition phrases in speaking (and writing). For this activity, you will focus on connective words used to express thoughts in opposition to each other. Most of us tend to use the word “but” a lot, but there are other options to choose from which are more academic. These include “however”, “on the other hand”, and “then again”. Provide examples of each used in a pair of sentences.

2. On one side of the board, write a list of topics. For example: TV, travel, cell phones, computers, cars, fast food, etc.

3. On the other side of the board, write the transition phrases.

4. Check for comprehension of the terms “pro” and “con”. If necessary, pick a topic, make two columns, one with a (+) at the top and the other with a (-), and ask the students to help you outline the pros and cons of the topic.

We do it:

1. Now elicit sample sentences from the students, using the information you’ve generated and a transition phrase.

2. Ask a student to model the activity with you.

3. Tell the student your topic and explain that you will begin talking about the pros. When they clap their hands, you have to use a transition phrase and begin talking about the cons. Every time they clap, you have to switch course, using a transition phrase before you continue.

You do it:

1. Students pair up.

2. Give them a few minutes to reflect on their topic of choice.

3. Each student has a turn to speak and a turn to listen (and clap!)

“All learning involves conversation. The ongoing dialogue, internal and external, that occurs as we read, write, listen, compose, observe, refine, interpret, and analyze IS how we learn.” – Regie Routman

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Sentence Games


Purpose: To explore and discover the “rules” of sentence formation.

Prep time: none

Materials: white board and markers

Prep: none

Procedure:

1) Write a simple sentence on the board, such as “It’s a book”. One by one, students suggest one or two words, or a phrase, which can be added to the sentence.

2) Each student writes in the new word or words and then reads the new sentence aloud. The class then decides if it is grammatically correct.

3) The level of the students will determine the complexity of the sentence. Beginning level might be: It’s a book.

It’s a big book.

It’s a big, red book.

It’s Maria’s big, red book.

It’s not Maria’s big, red book. Etc.

Variations:
Start with a longer sentence and students remove a word or words to make the sentence shorter. Continue until you can’t reduce the sentence any more.

Replace words in the original sentence to change the sentence completely. The meaning of the sentence can change, but it must remain grammatically correct. As above, each time the sentence is changed, the student reads it aloud and the class decides if it is correct.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Second Language Acquisition

Do you ever feel like a student is losing ground rather than progressing? Do you wonder why a structure they used correctly last week is now used incorrectly? The following video, Second Language Acquisition in Under 5 Minutes, was created by MLC’s own Educational Technology Trainer, Susan Wetenkamp-Brandt. It will help you understand why mastery of a grammar rule doesn’t happen all at once and why it’s important to be patient with ourselves and our learners.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3_LOBBLmgYc

Points to reflect on after you view the video:

1. Mastery of a grammar rule does not come quickly or all at once. Remind your learners to be patient with themselves. You’ll need to review and repeat each grammar topic frequently.

2. Mistakes are not bad! Mistakes are windows into your learners’ grammar and can help you understand what they already know and what they need to work on. When learners start making different kinds of mistakes, this can actually be a sign of learning!

3. Correct grammar does not always indicate mastery of the rule. The learner may simply be repeating something she has heard, without understanding why it is correct. Don’t assume that your learners won’t benefit from review and repetition, just because they already use the grammar correctly.

4. People don’t always learn what they are taught – they learn what they are ready to learn. Not everyone in a class or group will be ready to learn a particular structure at the same time. This is not a failure on the part of the student or of the tutor/teacher.

5. Some things which may seem simple or beginning-level at first glance are actually very complicated. Don’t frustrate yourself or your learner(s) by insisting on complete accuracy before moving on to something else. Do another activity, and then come back to the grammar later.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Voter Education


Lessons on Elections and Voting in Minnesota

For English Language and Citizenship Classes

Thousands of students who are taking English or citizenship classes are, or will be, eligible to vote in the upcoming election. To be a voter, students must:

  • be citizens
  • be 18 years or older
  • have resided in Minnesota for a minimum of 20 days.

To become citizens, they study and pass a rigorous examination. Then they have the opportunity to vote in the election, and you, as a teacher, have the opportunity to help their participation by preparing them to vote. The basic message of these lessons is the importance of voting as one way to be involved in one’s community and country. Voting is a right of all citizens, and it is the responsibility of all citizens to be informed about the issues and candidates.

Voter Education for English Language and Citizenship Classes is a primer on the basics of voting. It is written for intermediate through advanced English language learners. These lessons are relevant for all students, even if some students in the class are not citizens. They can still learn about the issues, have opinions about candidates, and talk to others about their views.

The lessons are based upon original stories, using a ‘real-life’ approach to learning language. Students develop skills in reading, writing, speaking and critical thinking while they learn about a significant facet of life in the United States – voting and elections. All lessons include a question worksheet, an activity and relevant materials (or links to websites to obtain materials) for Minnesota and US elections.

  • Lesson 1 Registering to vote is about eligibility and voter registration. The story of Hawa teaches about voter registration. A pre-registration form in English is included in the lesson. Teachers are encouraged to actually register eligible voters in class, up until 20 days before the election. Otherwise, students can fill out the registration form in class, and take it with them when they vote in November.
  • Lesson 2 Learning about Levels of Government uses a map to teach about boundaries for federal, state, county and local jurisdictions. The story about Fatima responds to students’ confusion about who is running for which office.
  • Lesson 3 Learning about the Candidates and the Issues is how to become informed about the candidates. In the story, students follow Carlos as he learns to think about political ads and ethnic identification with a candidate. The subject of political issues is introduced, to help students discern what positions candidates support.
  • Lesson 4 Making a Choice continues the story of Carlos as he struggles to decide how to vote. Students learn about political parties and how to get more information before they make their choices.
  • Lesson 5 Going to the Polls focuses on the procedure for voting, using a sample polling place diagram and sample ballot. Mai takes his mother Tran to vote for the first time and they work their way through the polling place. Students end the lesson series when they make a sticker to wear that says “I Will Vote!”

Information for the lessons is from the Minnesota Secretary of State’s Office and the League of Women Voters. Recommended sources for you and your students

  • Voter’s Guide, published by the StarTribune; available at Target Stores, Mervyn’s and Marshall Fields, free of charge; StarTribune newspaper voter’s guide: www.startribune.org
  • Secretary of State’s Office: www.sos.state.mn.us
  • League of Women Voters of Minnesota Voter Guide: statewide nonpartisan publication that includes, in one issue, all the candidates for statewide offices for all the major and registered minor parties and photos, biographies and responses to our questions from US president, US House and statewide judicial candidates. www.lwvmn.org

Lesson 1 Registering to Vote

Any person can provide registration cards and assistance to help register voters, and the ESL and citizenship classrooms are ideal places to do voter registration. When new voters take this first step of filling out the registration form, they are more likely to actually cast their vote on the day of the election. ESL teachers have a good opportunity to pre-register eligible voters. You can keep a list of names and phone numbers of the people you register to call and remind to vote the day before the election.

Eligibility requirements in Minnesota are:

  • 18 years of age or older
  • A citizen of the United States, and
  • Have lived in Minnesota for at least 20 days before the election

U.S. citizens may not be deprived of the right to vote because they cannot read, write or speak English.

Pre-registration is accepted up to 20 days prior to an election. Voters who register by this deadline will receive a postcard in the mail with information about their polling location. Eligible voters who have not pre-registered can register at their polling place on the day of the election.

Teacher preparation and materials: Make copies of the story, questions and voter registration form for all students. Decide on key vocabulary you might want to pre-teach. You also may get a supply of voter registration cards, available in Hmong, Spanish, Somali and Russian, at one of the following locations:

Procedure:

1. Hand out a copy of the story and questions to each student.

2. Read the story aloud while students follow along. Then read aloud, sentence by sentence, with the group repeating.

3. Ask if there are words or phrases students don’t understand and then explain and clarify as you go along. Teachers may want to pre-teach key vocabulary words before reading the story.

4. Give students time to go over the story silently and underline anything they don’t understand or want explained. If some finish quickly, they can work on the questions following the story.

5. Work with the words or phrases students underlined, and help them understand the concepts in the story.

6. You can use the questions in a variety of ways.

  • Have students work in pairs to write answers to questions on the worksheet, using complete sentences. Ask for volunteers to write answers on the board.
  • Use questions as a catalyst for discussion.

Follow-up Activity: Read aloud the statement of eligibility on the Minnesota Voter Registration Card. Explain anything students don’t understand. Give non-registered eligible students the option to complete the card. Other students can use the card to interview a partner and fill in the card for the partner (without their signature). Mail in only those cards that have certified eligibility and a signature.

Story: Hawa Registers to Vote

Hawa is 34 years old. She became a citizen in 2001 but she has never voted. She didn’t register to vote when she became a citizen. Now, there is going to be an election, and Hawa wants to vote.

Hawa asks her ESL teacher, John, “What do I need to do to vote?”

John says, “First you need to register. You can register to vote before the election. This is called pre-registration. That puts you on the list of voters so it will be easier when you vote in November. You can also vote on Election Day at your polling place.”

“What is a polling place?” asks Hawa.

“A polling place is the room where you vote. Polling places also are called ‘polls,’” says John. “Polls may be in schools, apartment buildings, churches and community buildings. Your polling place is in your neighborhood. The Secretary of State’s Office can give directions to your polling place if you call 651-296-2803. Their web site is www.sos.state.mn.us.”

“I want to register before the election. I want to pre-register.” says Hawa.

“I will bring a registration card to the next class and you can pre-register.” John answers. “Do you want the card in English or Somali? They also are available in Hmong, Spanish and Russian.”

“Please get me a card in English, so I can practice my English,” says Hawa. “Will you help me if I don’t understand the instructions?”

John gets a voter registration card in English at the public library. It is free. He brings it to class the next day. He also gets a card in Somali for Hawa to give to her husband. They need to pre-register 20 days before the election.

Hawa completes the card in English, using a pen, not a pencil. It is very easy. She puts on a $.44 stamp and mails it to:

Secretary of State

60 Empire Drive

Suite 100

St. Paul, MN 55103

When Hawa goes home, she takes the other registration card to her husband. Now she can help him fill it out. She can be his teacher.

Questions: Hawa Registers to Vote

  1. What does Hawa need to do before she can vote?
  2. What is the name of the place where a person votes?
  3. How do you find out where to vote?
  4. In what languages are registration cards?
  5. Where does John get the registration card?
  6. Where does Hawa mail the registration card?
  7. How can Hawa help her husband register?

Quick Pronunciation Lesson

Purpose: to assist a student who is having difficulty pronouncing a particular word or phrase

Prep time: none

Materials: something to write with (optional)

Prep: none

Procedure:

  1. You hear a student having difficulty pronouncing a particular word or phrase. It could be that the student is having difficulty with word stress, consonant clusters, a particular sound, or some other difficulty.
  2. Replicate what the student says (do the best you can) and then say the target pronunciation. Repeat both versions a few times to help the student hear and see the difference between what he/she is actually saying and what he/she is trying to say. You can also write the two versions, using conventional spelling.
  3. Indicate that the student should attempt to say it again, if he/she hasn’t already done so.
  4. After a couple attempts, move on. It takes time and repetition to learn to pronounce words and being put on the spot during class can be frustrating. Suggest that the student say some repetitions for homework.

We've Moved!


The Minnesota Liteacy Council's main office moved the last week in September. You can now find us at:

700 Rayomond Ave
St. Paul MN 55114

Our parking lot is located around the corner on Wabash. From Raymond, take a left on Wabash and then turn left into the parking lot. The door in the part of the building with the green siding is our main entrance.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Helping Learners Correct Their Errors

Activity: Helping Learners to Correct their Errors

Purpose: When students make errors it is a best practice to help them correct their own errors rather than give them the answers.

Prep time: None

Materials: Whatever the students are currently working on

Prep: None

Procedure:

Here are some general strategies to use when doing error correction. Specific examples are below.

  • Help learners notice discrepancies between what they wrote/said and the examples.
  • Help learners notice discrepancies between something that they answered correctly and the error.
  • Ask learners how they found the answer (ask this for correct answers too).
  • Ask learners why they think that is the answer.
  • Ask learners to read what they wrote aloud and then ask what is missing.
  • Help learners narrow down their answer choices.

Example: Multiple Choice Worksheet

For example, let’s say that a learner circled D for question number one on this worksheet. The teacher responds by first asking the learner to read the question aloud. Then she asks the student to point to the answer in the reading material. Next, she points out that this answer choice is under the wrong category. She asks the student where the correct category is and then asks the student to scan for the correct answer.

Example: Modals Worksheet (When you click on this link, you’ll go to a page that says Road Safety – Intermediate at the top. Click on the second worksheet in the list, which says Modals Worksheet – (“Have to/Don’t have to”).

As another example, let’s say that a learner is filling out this modals worksheet. She answered number one correctly, but she wrote, “A learner don’t have to get 100 percent on the written test” for number five. The teacher responds by asking the learner to read number one aloud and asks her to point to the place in the chart at the top of the worksheet that shows the correct answer. Then the teacher asks her to read number five aloud and to point to the chart. If she points to the wrong place the teacher will tell her that it is in a different place on the chart.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Odd one Out (Which One is Different?)

Purpose: This activity can be used at all levels to review vocabulary. It also works well in one-to-one tutoring situations.

Materials: board and marker

Prep: Based on the theme or unit you want to review, make groupings of 6 words in which one of the 6 doesn’t fit with the others. There may be room for debate about which one doesn’t fit, and that adds a layer of complexity and interest to the activity.

Procedure:

I do it:
The tutor writes 6 words on the board, reads them to the class, then circles the word that doesn’t belong and explains why.

Example: chair table window sofa desk shelf

T: In my office at home, I have a chair, a table, a window, a desk and shelf, but no sofa, so I’m going to circle “sofa”.

We do it:
Ask learners what they would choose in the above example and why. One might circle “window” because it’s the only item that is both inside and outside. A key idea here is that there’s not always one right answer, but learners need to be able to explain their choices.

Write one more set of 6 words on the board and ask members of the class to indicate which word they would circle and why.

You do it:
Write sets of 6 words or numbers (or 4 for lower level) on the board (unless you decided to make a handout ahead of time). If you want learners to practice writing, ask them to copy the words, then circle the word or number in each group that they think doesn’t belong, knowing that they will need to justify their choices.

To wrap up, ask volunteers to come forward, circle the word in each list that doesn’t belong, and explain their choice. If other students made different choices, ask them to share those and justify their choice.

Extension: If everyone agrees on a particular word that is the “odd one out”, erase it and ask students to choose another one in the same group that doesn’t fit. When you have two words left, ask the learners to come up with ten ways that the two remaining words are different.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Scramble Relay


Purpose: This is a warm-up activity that can be adapted for all levels and used to review any situational dialogue or grammar point previously covered in class.

Preparation Time: 10+ minutes

Materials:
Paper or index cards, pen or marker

Preparation:
Make 2 complete sets of sentences, one for each of two groups. Limit the number of sentences, based on the level of the group and what can be accomplished in 15 minutes. For higher level students, a whole dialogue, poem or story could be put onto cards. Write each word from each sentence on a separate card. Scramble the words in each sentence and clip them together with a paper clip.

Procedure:

  1. Divide the group into two teams, each team standing around a table.
  2. Place each team’s pile of scrambled sentences in front of the room.
  3. A runner from each team takes one scrambled sentence back to its team.
  4. The team works together to unscramble the sentence. When they think the sentence is in correct order, they send a different runner back to the teacher to whisper the solution.
  5. If the sentence is correct, the runner takes another sentence for his or her team to unscramble.
  6. If the sentence is not correct, the runner returns to the team to try again.
  7. When one team has unscrambled all the sentences, the game is over.

Extension:

When working with a dialogue, poem or story, ask the teams to put the sentences in the proper order after unscrambling them.

Note: This activity can be done with an individual learner. If your student is open to adding an element of competition, time him/her to see how long it takes to unscramble each sentence or to complete the whole task. Sitting next to the student makes it easy to confirm the correct order, but the student must still get up and go get the next set of cards. The physical movement will help keep them alert and make the activity more interesting.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Using a Written Text to Practice Multiple Skills

Purpose: To use listening, speaking, reading and writing in working with a written text

Preparation Time: depends on time needed to gather materials for pre-teaching vocabulary (see below)

Materials: Selected text, plus copies for learners, markers, white board

Preparation: Plan to spend a little time thinking about how you will create context for the reading. What questions can you ask to elicit vocabulary and student knowledge about the subject? Decide which vocabulary words you need to pre-teach. What pictures, definitions, or examples do you need?

Procedure:

I do it:

1) Create context related to the story.

2) Teacher/tutor reads out loud while students listen. At this point, students do not have a copy of the text.

3) Go back to the beginning and read the first sentence. Ask students to name a key word from the sentence. Write that word on the board. Continue until you have one key word from each sentence on the board.

Note: Be sure to write the words in sequence on the board.

We do it:

1) Ask the class to refer to the key words on the board and retell the story.

2) After the retell, depending on the content of the story, ask students to express an opinion about it, share additional information they may have, infer meaning, suggest solutions to a problem, etc.

3) Encourage students to ask questions about the topic or story.

You do it:

1) Now pass out the story. Students read independently.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Making a Bar Graph with Post-It Notes


Purpose: To help students create and interpret a simple bar graph

Preparation Time: none

Materials: white board or flip chart, markers, post-it notes, pens or pencils

Preparation: Choose a question related to the unit or theme you are working on. This will be the basis of a survey that the students will conduct in class.

For a housing unit, the question might be:
Do you live in an apartment, duplex, townhouse, mobile home, or house?

For a transportation unit, ask:
Do you come to school by bus, by car, by bike, on foot, or by train?

Procedure:

I do it:

1) Write columns across the top of the whiteboard. For example, make 5 columns, one each for apartment, duplex, townhouse, mobile home, and house.

2) Model the activity by asking 2-3 students the question regarding housing. As each student answers, write the response on a post-it note and place it in the correct column.

We do it:

1) Ask a student to take your place and ask the question of several more students.

2) Ask another student to write the responses on post-it notes.

3) Ask the group in which column you should place the post-it note.

You do it:

1) Ask the students to find a partner, preferably someone who speaks a different first language.

2) Students take turns asking each other the question and recording the partner’s response on a post-it.

3) Each pair then goes to the whiteboard and places the post-its in the correct columns.

Note: The teacher/tutor may need to assist learners to make sure columns are clearly separated, so that the final result looks like a bar graph.

Wrap-Up:

1) Ask questions about the bar graph to practice “reading” the information. How many people live in apartments? Do more people live in apartments or houses?

2) Ask students to write sentences about the information on the bar graph.

3) Practice summarizing the information on the graph. For example: Four people live in houses, one lives in a townhouse, and six live in apartments.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Best Practice: What is Teacher Talk?

Teacher talk” is everything you say when you're in the classroom. If you are someone who habitually thinks out loud, pay a lot of attention to your “teacher talk”!

Focused, deliberate speaking is most critical in Beginning and Intermediate ESL settings, but even Advanced and GED instruction can benefit from it.

Here are a few points to ponder:

Which do you think is easier for ESL students to understand?
A. "I'm gonna go ahead and ask you all to turn to page 34."
B. "Please go to page 34."

Which statement is the most authentic?
A. "I'm going to introduce myself to you now. 'Hello, my name is Emily.'"
B. "Hello, my name is Emily."

Which definition is most useful to your students during a lesson on the American K-12 education system?
A. "The word Kindergarten comes from the German, meaning 'a garden of children.'"
B. "Kindergarten is school for young children. It's the level before first grade. There is a lot of reading, art, and play."

The answers are all B because they are comparatively clutter-free, authentic, and relevant.

Try tackling a section of your next lesson with your teacher talk in mind.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Think, Pair, Square


Purpose: Students from traditional academic backgrounds may struggle with the idea and practice of group discussions, which are more common in U.S. classrooms. Here’s a technique that may help them ease into the activity.

Procedure:

1) Give the class a discussion question.

2) Ask students to think and talk about the question with a partner.

3) Next, each pair goes and talks to another pair.

4) Now lead a whole-class discussion.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Giving Directions for Worksheets


The best time to give directions for completing a worksheet is BEFORE you hand it out!

Let's say that as part of an intermediate level unit on making a schedule and setting goals, you are using a worksheet that asks your students to look at Sadia’s schedule in chart form, answer questions about it with a partner, then write sentences about Sadia’s activities using adverbs of frequency.

Before handing out the worksheet, plan to:
  • ask questions to find out what experience students have maintaining a written schedule of their daily activities (activate prior knowledge)
  • pre-teach any vocabulary that might be new
  • review adverbs of frequency if necessary
  • explain the purpose of the worksheet - what will the students be practicing?
  • check for comprehension of instructions

Show students the worksheet using an overhead or document projector. Talk about or show them the different parts of the worksheet. Starting with the first part, look at the example. Talk about the process for arriving at the answer given in the example. Do the next one as a group, with you as the leader, and then ask the group to complete the next one together. Check for comprehension. If the learners can’t repeat instructions or show you, spend more time modeling the activity.

Introduce each part of the worksheet in the manner described above. Demonstrate as much as possible, even when giving verbal instructions. For example, if you want students to underline the adverbs of frequency in their sentences, show them what you mean or ask them to show you.

Now hand out the worksheets.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Qualities Brainstorm


Purpose: To practice speaking; review nouns and adjectives

Preparation time: None

Procedure:
1.
Choose a quality, such as round.
2.
Have learners name as many things as possible that have that quality (e.g., wheel, sun, moon, clock, etc.).
3.
You may write down what your students say or you may have them write a list themselves.

Here are some categories:

Things that …

Are red/blue/black/white
Are round/square/oval/flat
Are hard/soft/liquid
Are sweet/sour/bitter/chewy
Fly/float/jump
Come in twos/threes/fours
Have holes/handles
Use electricity
Are made of plastic/wood/metal/glass
Move quickly/slowly

Variation:
To turn the activity into a game, have each student read his or her list while the rest of the class tries to identify the quality.