Teaching Newcomers (ELL) the Days of the Week

I teach/review the days of the week with my adult Newcomers every day. We use a large calendar and I often point to the day, month, year or abbreviations as needed. We usually begin class with this activity. 

I write three sentences on the board (below) and ask, "What day is today?", "What day was yesterday?, and What day will tomorrow be?" As the class answers, we write the day in the blank. Sometimes I write and sometimes I call on students to write the days of the week.

    • Yesterday was __________________.
    • Today is _________________________.
    • Tomorrow will be ____________________.

Newcomers have to learn three versions of Days of the Week. So, for the actual day, we write all three versions: Long, Short and Easy.

    • Long - Friday
    • Short - Fri. 
    • Easy  - F 

Many Students with Limited or Interrupted Formal Education (SLIFE) come from an oral culture which uses music as a teaching tool. I love to sing the Days of the Week to the tune of 'O My Darling Clementine.' This teaches the correct syllable stress and locks the information in the students' memory. I use this anchor charts and point to the Days of the Week as we sing. 

Days of the Week Song
(O My Darling Clementine tune)


Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday,
Thursday, Friday, Saturday 
Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday,
Thursday, Friday, Saturday
There are 7 days, There are 7 days,
There are 7 days in a week.
Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday,

Thursday, Friday, Saturday

 

Lastly, Newcomers need to learn about weekdays and weekends.  I teach weekdays as the days people usually go to school or work. The weekends are usually the days off of school or work. My adult ESL students understand that there are many jobs which require work on the weekend such as hospitals, farming, groceries, and retail jobs.


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