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EL Civics for ESL Students

ESL Lifeskills Lessons

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Lifeskill lessons teach key vocabulary words, phrases, and questions so students can successfully complete day-to-day tasks. These lessons are designed for beginning to intermediate ELL, ESL, and EFL students. They can be assigned as computer lab tasks or taught verbally to the whole class by using interactive white boards.

Airports and Airlines - Traveling by plane is fast, easy, and safe. Tourists and business people often find that flying is cheaper than driving. Airline tickets can be purchased online, over the phone, or through a travel agent.

Alphabet - To read and write in English you need to know the 26 letters of the alphabet, both upper case letters and lowercase letters.

Amusement Parks - Amusement parks are popular in the United States. Some parks have a theme, while others are just a collection of fun rides. Tickets cost $10 to $45. Most amusement parks offer discounts for kids and senior citizens.

Banking - Banks are a safe place to keep your money. They offer savings accounts, checking accounts, home loans, money orders, and other financial services. Opening a bank account is easy, but you must have proper identification.

Breakfast - Eating a healthy breakfast is important. Cereal, fruit, and lean meats are good breakfast choices. Many people drink coffee in the morning; others drink milk or juice.

Buying a House - Buying a home is the most expensive and important purchase most people make. You can find homes for sale by contacting a real estate agent, looking in the newspaper, checking online, or attending open houses. Home loans vary, so it's important to shop around.

Calendars - Calendars help us organize our time. They show the months of the year and the days of the week. They also show holidays. Using a calendar is an important lifeskill.

Car Insurance - State laws require drivers to have car insurance. Car insurance rates vary depending on where you live, what kind of car you have, your driving record, and how much coverage you need.

Classroom Items - Beginning level ESL students need to learn basic vocabulary words about items in the classroom. This is a great lesson for the first or second day of class.

Clocks and Watches - Clocks and watches tell us what time it is. It's important to get to work and school on time. Clocks and watches help us schedule our time wisely.

Clothes - Shopping malls are large enclosed or open spaces with many stores and restaurants. They are convenient because they have large parking lots that surround the stores. Some malls have movie theaters.

Colors - Colors are used to describe things. In English, we usually say the color before we name the item. For example: the red apple. This lesson uses basic vocabulary words to teach colors. It includes a PowerPoint.

Common Activities - Verbs are used to describe common activities. Examples: cook, dance, sing, play the guitar, swim, etc.

Community Buildings and Places - Community buildings include the police department, the fire department, the library, schools, parks, playgrounds, courthouses, city hall, and shopping areas. Most community buildings are built with money raised from taxes.

Community Workers - Tax money is used to hire workers to run and maintain cities and towns. Examples of community workers include judges, city building inspectors, police officers, firefighters, bus drivers, trash collectors, tree trimmers, and cable installers.

Days of the Week - There are seven days in a week. Saturday and Sunday are called the weekend. The other days are weekdays.

Daylight Savings Time - Daylight savings time starts on March 11, 2012, and ends on November 4, 2012.

Dentist - It is important to brush your teeth after every meal and before going to bed. You should also floss your teeth and gums once or twice a day. Patients should visit the dentist once or twice a year for a check-up and cleaning.

DMV Lesson - DMV stands for Department of Motor Vehicles. People go to the DMV to get a drivers license. They must take a written test and a road test.

Emergencies - If you see an emergency and someone is hurt or at risk of being hurt, call 911 for help. The emergency operator will help you. Be prepared to listen carefully and answer all questions clearly.

Employment - Finding the right job can be difficult. Some jobs require training or a college degree. Most jobs require a high school diploma.

ESL Textbooks - ESL textbooks help English as a Second Language learners learn English. Textbooks can be purchased in bookstores or online. Picture dictionaries, workbooks, reading books, grammar books, listening CDs, and newspapers make learning English fun, easy, and affordable.

ESL Education - English as a Second Language programs teach English to non-native speakers. They are offered in grade schools, high schools, and adult schools. ESL classes are available for beginning, intermediate, and advanced levels.

Fall or Autumn - Fall is also called autumn. It is one of the four seasons. The weather in fall is cool and windy.

Families - Family members include relatives like grandfathers, grandmothers, fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, uncles, aunts, cousins, and more.

Food Lesson - There are many kinds of foods, and each food has a unique flavor, shape, color, and texture. Food can be cooked or eaten raw.

Football - Football is a team sport and a contact sport. Players wear helmets, shoulder pads, and uniforms.

Graduations - When students graduate from grade school, high school, or college, they receive a diploma and participate in a graduation ceremony.

Greetings - There are many ways to say "hello" in English. Some greeting are formal and others are informal.

Grocery Store - Grocery stores sell food, beverages, and household supplies. They are organized in aisles and sections. If you can't find an item, you can ask a worker to help you.

Healthy Foods - Healthy foods include lean meats, fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts, and beans. People who eat healthy foods feel better and usually live longer.

Household Chores - Keeping your home clean is a constant chore. Household products can make household chores faster and easier to complete.

Housing - People live in many kinds of homes: houses, apartments, condos, townhomes, duplexes, mobile homes, trailers, and tents.

Library - Most cities have a least one library. Libraries have books, videos, and magazines for you to read or checkout. Libraries are free.

Medical Clinic - Medical clinics offer medical services for non-emergencies. They are similar to hospitals, but patients don't stay overnight.

Names - We use names to identify people. People have a first name and a last name. Some people also have one or more middle names.

National Parks - The National Park Service protects national parks from human development so future generations can enjoy nature. This lesson includes photos of Yosemite, Grand Tetons, Smoky Mountains, Everglades, and Yellowstone.

Parks - People go to the park to relax, have a picnic, and play sports. Parks have grass, trees, benches, playgrounds, and water fountains. Parks are free.

Post Office - People go to the post office to mail letters and packages or to buy stamps and money orders.

Recreation - Recreation activities like hiking, camping, golfing, and going to the zoo help us reduce our stress levels.

Restaurants - Restaurants sell prepared food to customers. Some restaurants are expensive and some are cheap.

Shapes and Colors - All learners need to be able to describe the shapes and colors of things. In English, the color usually comes before the shape when describing things. For example, red heart or blue square.

Signs in Public Places - It is important to be able to read signs in public places. Signs tell us what we can and cannot do.

Sports - Participating in sports is a fun way to improve our physical fitness and health. Some sports are team sports and others are individual sports.

Student Loans - Students that don't qualify for college grants can borrow money to go to college. Student loans have to be paid back with interest, so check around to get the best possible loan.

Summer Vacation - Summer is the most popular season for going on vacation. There are vacation packages for all budgets.

Transportation - Cars, motorcycles, buses, trucks, boats, ships, helicopters, airplanes, and spaceships are types of transportation.

Weather - Weather can be hot, warm, cool, or cold. Students will learn vocabulary words and phrases to talk about the weather.

Zoo Animals - Zoos keep wild animals on display, either in cages or in open enclosures. Most zoos have educational programs to teach visitors about the needs of animals in the wild.