Teacher: Irina Bučinska

Observer: Larisa Sardiko

Form: 7 (13 - 14 y.o.)


Thinking: upgrading the model of a POV text through the analysis of problems of the pupils’ texts; implicit introducing the multi-screen model to develop the skills of describing the elements in terms of sub-systems and super-systems; TTF – step 2.

Subject-specific: understanding how to select facts for creating a good POV text.

Materials: pieces from the learners’ writings (dialogues) made at home specially selected by the teacher as to focus on the precision of description problems.

Abbreviations: T (teacher), P (pupils), POV – point of view, *vocabulary provided by the teacher, O (observer), TTF (thinking task framework), S. (sentence)

Summary: this lesson shows how the teacher leads pupils to realizing that selecting the facts is important for a good POV text. It also shows how the pupils work on the upgrading of POV text model and how this model helps them to improve the text.

The lesson starts (as usually) from the pupils setting their own aims (as part of self-study and learner-centeredness) for the lesson – 2 min; T. go back to your aims for the previous lesson and put down the results – 2 min

P1. What will we do? P2 maybe we will write another POV? T. What do you think we need? P3. we will look at our dialogues and see which are good and bad

T. What can help here? How can we say what is worse and what is better? (here the teacher expected the answer – how close the text is to our description of the characters- but the pupils didn’t  give the answers – they still are not aware of the importance of the ‘preparatory part”, in this particular case – the features of the characters, and how those influence the text) We are going to work with your works to understand what problems we have and how to make the texts better.

I. Eliciting the reasons for writing – 5 min

T. When do you write? In what cases do you write? (the teacher deliberately avoids the word ‘why’)

Pupils give various answers: in the past; 2. when sb asks/makes me to write sth; etc. 3. when we must (have to) send a letter; 4. when you don’t know what to do; 5. to fix some useful information etc.

T. Can you make a conclusion? P. we write when we want /need to write

II. Analysing the examples from the task the pupils wrote at home (see the Task in the Materials section) – 20 min

Extract 1

T. Oh! How nice is here! But the next morning will be more amazing, because I am going to ask birds and squirrels for skiing and skating on me!



T. What do you like and why?

P. nice – description, more specific – different words, P. All words are different…P. no repetitions; P. birds and squirrels skating on me.. P. unusual

T. what tree are we talking about? Any tree?- P. That tree (in the school yard) T. How often do we see squirrels there? – P. Never. T. Any conclusions? P. We must stick to the facts, select only truth.

T. Make a conclusion and put it either into your aim or into your model

An example of a pupil’s model: (ENV: Parameter: e.g. very active, sporty; Value – likes to slide at wind;  How you will show – describe his hobby; example – this activity is very useful…)

Extract 2

 Benches: sure, do you remember your most romantic moment?

 Tree: Yes, this year since you were made many pairs have sat here on you and have talked about most interesting things. One day one pair talked about where they were going to marry. The man offered to fly to Cyprus and to live there.


P. offered to go to Cyprus T. Can the tree speak like this? P. argue … maybe the tree was born in Cyprus; T. I disagree not with the fact itself but with how the tree interprets it P. it’s the person, not the tree T. Will the tree speak like this? P. Maybe …T. we don’t know how trees behave. Be careful about writing how the tree would actually speak

Extract 3

… a dialogue with a piece of monologue inside describes a new tennis court which the tree cannot see

The pupils note that it is important how you organize the text (layout)

Something is described that the tree cannot see

Extract 4

In itthe pupils notice how the speech characterizes the speaker (the bench) ‘I am really sorry my leaf is on you‘

- Mr. Bench (do you)  I remember that in 2005 Artem Nikulin went to this school and now he is writing a story about us and ….

They also noticed that the benches were not there in 2005

III. Entering the conclusions into the model – 3 min

P1. Rely on true facts

P2. Do not mix monologues with dialogues

P3.Make sure whose POV you are writing from and interpret the facts

O. The pupils very ardently defended their own and each others’ works; however, could not but admit the shortcomings when taking the POV of the specific tree and the benches

VI. Reviewing Homework (see the lesson about Mother Bear and Her Cubs):

T. What is your cub talking to you about?

1. why we need to go and can’t stay

2. asks about a new place – is it good, comfortable

3. what rooms will  be there

4. if it is safe or not

5. what nature is there

6. are there other bears

7. mine is a funny story

8. a good daughter and a bad son – relationships

9. difference between the characters

T. Make a conclusion:

P. the theme was the same we wrote about different things

2. all cubs have questions

3. we managed to write that they are cubs not human kids

T. You wrote about different things – why?

(In the future T. will lead to various possible interpretations depending on the aim)

T. takes the pupils back to – the list of WHEN WE WRITE

Conclusion: P. when we start writing we must understand why we write


The idea of this task and its analysis appeared from the problem seen in the previous task ‘Mother Bear and her Cubs’: newly born cubs mentioned bees which they could not see. When writing another POV task the pupils made the same mistake – included the facts from their own POV not from the POV of their character, this was the basis for discussing this problem at the lesson and adding this into their POV model.  

By this lesson the teacher made the pupils realize that the change of one element in the text leads to the change of other elements. She wanted them to understand that only reliable facts should be selected and their interpretation depends on the purpose, specific situation and the POV of the one who writes/talks; any element we speak about is a part of a certain system and this should be taken into account when writing. 

The level of creativity is higher when the task is properly limited. We have seen it through the task with the specific tree and the benches form the school yard.


# Alexander Sokol 2012-02-03 13:33
Irina and Larisa, many thanks for an interesting lesson and an account of it. I think it is extremely useful, especially if one succeeds in creafully reading through the whole of the post. A few questions I had while reading.
1. Pupil's models for POV. I think it would be useful to share some of them under Materials section and probably even add comments on how they have been evolving.
2. How is the process of pupils' changing their models is organised technically? As I understand, there's no time to do it during the lesson as the focus is different. Are they expected to do it afterwards / at some certain times? Is it checked? If so, by whom and how? I think it could be useful to discuss this question here.
3. Evaluation of pupils' models from the appropriateness of the ENV. I understand that the main focus is on improving models through empirical testing - and I like it. However, at times, we can also look at models from a purely logical point of view and ask if what we call an element or parameter is actually an element or a parameter. Or if it is a parameter of the element we've defined. Do you see what I mean? My question is if you sometimes ask your pupils to do such things?
4. As Susan noted in another comment, your approach of asking learners to write the aim for the lesson seems unusual to many teachers. As you know, I like this approach a lot. However, I think it'd be useful to have a separate post dedicated to it and provide links to some of the aims. As a question, I'd like to ask about the changes you notice in the ways learners formulate aims.
Many thanks,
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