- Key Words: Communicative competence, cooperative learning, integration, cooking
- Learner English Level: High beginner and above
- Learner Maturity Level: Junior high school and above
- Preparation Time: 5 minutes
- Activity Time: 30-45 minutes
- Materials: Construction paper, scissors, pencil, crayons, pen, illustration board, apron, white hat, artificial cooking set (pots, pans, plates, spatula, burner, and so on).
For learners of English as a foreign language, explicit instruction in speaking is vital. To acquire communicative competence, spoken language must be learned and practiced through activities that provide specific speaking tasks and preparation roles. Learners must be immersed in an environment where they can experience success and learn a variety of strategies to improve fluency. This practical English activity involves cooperative learning dynamics integrating three learning areas—English, arts, and home economics. Additionally, it aims to improve learners’ language-related abilities, develop self-confidence, and enhance creativity. Students will write and talk about their favorite food, a great springboard for English communication. As a final output, each group gives a show-like cooking presentation.
Step 1: Orient learners about the day’s activity. Assign them into groups of four members. Then place the artificial cooking set in the front.
Step 2. Ask all groups to choose a leader and a secretary. Distribute the worksheet entitled “My Favorite Food!” to all members.
Step 1: Give students time to answer the worksheet. Then members take turns in reading and sharing their work with the group. Each group must select only one food for the presentation.
Step 2: Emphasize that group members should help each other frame the cooking steps of the food. The group secretary is tasked to write down the food name, ingredients, and cooking methods on an illustration board that is to be posted on the blackboard during the group presentation. While the students are working, the teacher moves around and provides assistance to groups that might need help.
Step 3: Let all members help prepare the ingredients by using art materials. On construction paper, they must draw, color, and cut the ingredients according to desired sizes.
Step 4: Allow a few minutes for each group to practice for the cooking presentation. Each member must be assigned a specific task to do. For instance, Student A does the introduction (greetings, group members, food name, and a brief description of the food); Student B reads the ingredients (minced onions, chopped tomatoes, shredded chicken, etc.); and Students C and D present and explain the cooking procedure step-by-step. The presentation must be like an actual TV cooking show using an artificial cooking set.
Step 5: After all groups have finished their presentations, post all illustration boards on the blackboard for checking and proofreading. Emphasize important points, such as: sentence structure, grammar, spelling, vocabulary, word stress, intonation, and so on. Encourage and elicit suggestions from the students whenever sentences need revision.
Cooperative learning provides students the opportunity to interact, learn from each other, and acquire “a sense of responsibility.” This activity becomes an avenue to apply concepts learned in English, arts, and home economics, which is a good way to improve grammar, increase vocabulary, and develop fluency. The presentation also encourages self-expression and creativity which boost students’ confidence. Consequently, the classroom atmosphere becomes very encouraging for English learning since students experience fun in doing specific tasks. Finally, this lesson plan is applicable to many activities that require group effort and cooperation, namely: story grammar-making, science experiment presentation, simple research presentation, origami making, and the like.
The appendix is available as a downloadable PDF file below.