Lesson Plan for Homonyms: October 2.

 

Objective: Students will demonstrate their understanding of homonyms by either identifying homonyms and talking about their proper use within a text excerpt, or creating a poster with a non-example, example and explicated rule.

 

(Other goals:  to have the students understand and clarify the differences between the common homonyms, there/their/they’re, two/2/to/too, your/you’re and it’s/its. To familiarize students with Inspiration. To help students gain confidence in sharing out loud. To connect prior knowledge to the current context.)

 

Silent reading: 10 minutes.

Partner up, put your desks together.

Tell your partner about what you read. 30 seconds

Does anyone want to share something about what they read, or what their partner read? (Since you have to give book talks next week…)

 

Now I want two sets of partners to get together to make groups of 4 (or 5), and after you’ve done that to take out a piece of paper and a pen or pencil.

(You all know that I’m a student teacher, so that means that this year I am learning how to be a teacher. This is my very first time teaching eighth grade, so at the end of the class period, I’m going to ask you how you think I did, and whether you learned something today.)

 

We’re going to talk about Homonyms today, so on the top of your paper I want you to write the word homonym. First I want you to silently brain storm for 30 seconds about what you know about homonyms: what is a homonym? It is okay if you don’t know, guess, but I think some of you will know. What are some examples. Ready go:

 

Now I want you to share in your groups what you wrote down for the next minute.

 

Now as a class I want us to brainstorm what homonyms are.

I’m going to use this computer program to help us brainstorm. So raise your hands and tell me what you think homonyms are. You can tell me what someone in your group thought if you didn’t know…

Great, now what are some examples?

 

Homonyms are common spelling mistakes, even for adults—even for English teachers! (I often times will write “know” when I mean “no”). Spell checkers do not catch this spelling mistakes, because in mis-spelling one word, you’ve spelled another word correctly. Sometimes homonyms make reading sentences confusing.

 

The ones that we are going to focus on today are:
their, there, they’re
your, you’re
to, too and two
it’s and its. (hand out the hand out)

 

Read over the hand out (from Nancie Atwell) together, and read the sentences about M&M’s that are there to help you remember the differences in the homonyms.

 

Here are some sentences for you to fill in the blanks. You can do this in your groups. As soon as you’re done, put your heads down on your desk. (Go through all the exercises.)

 

If there is time, let students choose between reading the section of The Great Rat Hunt and analyzing the homonyms used, or making posters to put on the wall. For the posters, the groups need to choose one of the homonyms we focused on to make a poster about: make up a sentence using the homonym wrong, then correct it, then write out the rules for that set of words.

 

Now that we’ve gone over this, in your writing I expect you to use the homonym that you mean.

5 minutes before the end of class, have them put their desks back and turn their paper over: answer questions: What did you learn in class today? What did you like that we did today? What didn’t you like? Do you have any comments for me? (Did I talk too fast, or too quiet…? )

 

Remember: your homework is to read 20 minutes, write in your reading journal, and study your spelling words!

 

 

Homonyms

 

Homonyms are words that sound alike but mean and are spelled differently. Homonym means, literally, “same name.” Improper use of a homonym is a spelling error with extreme consequences (e.g. lashings).

 

Commonly Misspelled Homonyms: Definitions and Examples

 

THEIR—Belongs to a them (The teacher stole their M&M’s.)

THEY’RE—They are (They’re the world’s best candies.)

THERE—In that place; as an introductory adverb (There they are: on the teacher’s
 desk. There can never be enough M&M’m.)

 

TWO—The number 2 (Two or three packages of M&M’s provide a nutritious after-
 school snack.)

TOO—In addition (ALSO) or more than enough (He, too, eats too many M&M’s.)

TO—Preposition meaning “toward” or used with the infinitive of a verb (I’m going
 to M&M heaven, where I’m going to eat many M&M’s.)

 

YOUR—Belongs to a you (Your M&M’s are my M&M’s.)

YOU’RE—You are (You’re in my power; hand over your M&M’s.)

 

ITS—Belongs to an it (The dog ate its M&M’s and wanted mine.)

IT’S—It is (It’s that kind of day when I crave M&M’s.)

 

 

Homonym Review:

Their, There, and They’re

 

1.     ________________ aren’t any pencils left in the cup.

2.     They think ________________ so cool.

3.     ________________ excited about the tofu dessert, poor things.

4.     ________________ is my favorite kind of car.

5.     I like ________________ Lear jet; it’s cute.

6.     ________________ hermit crab escaped.

7.     ________________ playing Ultimate Frisbee.

8.     Don’t go ________________ without a bodyguard.

9.     They think ________________ going to get away with it.

10. ________________ is ________________ pet rat, which ________________ taking to Disney World.

 

Homonym Review:

Its and It’s, and Your and You’re


ITS or IT’S?

1.     The Declaration of Independence draws ______ strength from the writing, most of it Thomas Jefferson’s.

2.     The hermit crab finished eating ______ dog biscuit.

3.     ______ going to be another cold day.

4.     I chose this book because I know ______ author.

5.     I don’t think ______ nice to put your finger in your nose.

6.     ______ funny when she gives people the evil eye.


YOUR
or YOU’RE?

1.     Is that a new sweater ___________ wearing?

2.     Do you think ___________ coming to my house after school?

3.     ___________ getting on my nerves.

4.     Leave ___________ attitude outside.

5.     This isn’t ___________ day, is it?

6.     I think ___________ great.

 

Overview Responses

129 responses, 157 enrolled (some absences, some non-participants)

 

After the lesson, I asked students to turn over the piece of paper that they were brainstorming on, and answer the following 3 questions: (1) What did they learn today? (2) What did we do that they liked? (3) What should I do different to be a better teacher? In some classes I gave them several examples, some of which were latched onto, as the patterns show. This page is a conglomeration of their responses; specific class information follows.

 

What they said they learned:

About homonyms

Specific homonyms

About a classmate

Nothing (or nothing new)

Homonym usage

Other

62

30

11

6

5

5

Other: pronunciation, stuff, facts from worksheet, “i comes before e in most cases”

 

Quotes: “I learned that my last name (Nguyen) is a homonym,” “There are a lot of words that sound the same,” “How to spell Homomnyms right”

 

What they said they liked:

Working in Groups

Using the Computer (including Inspiration)

Having Choice in their final activity

Doing the poster as the final activity

The interesting worksheet

Nothing

Others

57

32

11

9

3

2

5

Other: Reading the excerpt as a final activity, “that we learned,” working as a class, hands-on stuff, not having to write much. (4 students from Period 2 said they liked choosing their own groups.)

 

Quotes: “It was alright, but it wasn’t that fun”

 

What they said I should do different:

Nothing, did great/good/fine

Speak more clearly, loudly, or slower

Allow more time for students to finish activities

Push desks together before class if working in groups

Allow students to choose own groups

Other

53

16

10

9

2

12

Other: give out candy, be more organized, check spelling, make room quieter, turn off all lights so student could see projection better, get attention better, don’t give out homework in the future, pronounce student’s name correctly, use overhead instead of computer, explain more, take class outside.

 

Quotes: “kept things going,” “good job teaching us homyms,” “Make things fun and exciting” “You did well with instructions,” “You did good. I learned a lot today,” “I’m excited to have you as a teacher,” “I think your a great teacher,” “I think you did a very great job on your first time teaching.” “You make learning fun and easy, keep up the great work.” “I was really noisy but you could hand out free pickles,” “One of our group members has a problem no amount of therepy will ever cure.”

 


Period 1. 26 responses. 31 enrolled in class.

What did they learn?

Specific Homonyms: 14

About Homonyms: 6

Nothing (or nothing new): 2

About a Classmate: 1

 

What did they like?

Working in Groups: 9

Using the Computer (and Inspiration): 4

Having a choice in their final activity: 1

Doing the poster at the end: 1

Reading the excerpt in groups at the end: 1

Interesting worksheet: 1

That we learned: 1

            Comment: “It was alright, but it wasn’t that fun”

 

What should I do differently?

Nothing, did great/good/fine: 4

Speak more clearly, louder, or slower: 7

Explain more: 1

Check Spelling: 1

            Specifics noted, “kept things going,” “good job teaching us homyms”

 

Period 2. 17 responses. 26 enrolled in class.

What did they learn?

Specific homonyms: 2

About homonyms: 5

About a classmate: 8

            Comment: “I learned that my last name is a homonym (Nguyen)”
“There are a lot of words that sound the same”

 

What did they like?

Working in groups: 8

(That they could pick their own groups: 4)

Using the computer: 2

Having a choice in their final activity: 1

Did not have to write much: 1

 

What should I do different?

Nothing, did great/good/fine: 8

Speak more clearly, louder, or slower: 1

Need to allow more time: 1

Push desks together before class: 1

Pronounce student’s name correctly: 1

Don’t give much homework: 1

               Specifics: “Make things fun and exciting” “You did well with instructions” “You did good. I learned a lot today” “I’m excited to have you as a teacher” “I think your a great teacher,” “I was really noisy but you could hand out free pickles,” “One of our group members has a problem no amount of therepy will ever cure.” “You should be able to pick one person and put two groups of two people [together] to make a group, so you can work well with some of your group.” “You could make it quiter,” “I think you could just be like you are. You’re really fun.”


Period 3. 31 responses. 36 enrolled in class.

What did they learn?

About homonyms: 11

Specific homonyms: 7

Homonym Usage: 3

About a classmate: 2

How to pronounce homonym and other words: 2

Facts from worksheet: 1
Nothing: 1

            Comment: “How to spell Homomnyms right”

 

What did they like?

Working in groups: 10

Using the computer: 10

Having a choice in their final activity: 4

Poster: 2

Working as a class: 1
Fill-in Worksheet: 1

Nothing: 1

 

What should I do different?

Nothing, did great/good/fine: 11

Push desks together for group work before class: 4

Speak more clearly, louder, or slower: 3

Allow students to choose own groups: 2

Need to allow more time: 2

Be more organized: 1

Give out candy: 1

Make room quieter: 1

Turn off all lights to better see projection: 1

Get attention better: 1

            Specifics: “I was really noisy but you could hand out free pickles” “One of our group members has a problem no amount of therepy will ever cure.” “You should be able to pick one person and put two groups of two people [together] to make a group, so you can work well with some of your group.” “You could make it quiter” “I think you could just be like you are. You’re really fun.”

 

Period 4. 33 responses. 36 enrolled in class.

What did they learn?

About homonyms: 25

Specific homonyms: 4

Homonym Usage: 1

Stuff: 1

 

What did they like?

Working in groups: 20

Using the computer (including Inspiration): 14

Having a choice in their final activity: 2

Poster: 1

Nothing: 1

 

What should I do different?

Nothing, did great/good/fine: 24

Speak more clearly, louder, or slower: 2

Push desks together for group work before class: 1

Give out candy: 1

We should go outside: 1

Use the overhead not the computer: 1

            Specifics: “I think you did a very great job on your first time teaching.” “You make learning fun and easy, keep up the great work”

 

Period 5. 22 responses. 28 enrolled in class.

What did they learn?

About homonyms: 15

Specific homonyms: 3

Nothing (or re-learned): 3

Homonym Usage: 1

I comes before E in most cases: 1

           

What did they like?

Working in groups: 10

Using the computer (including Inspiration): 5

Poster: 5

Having a choice in their final activity: 3

Hands-on stuff: 1

Worksheet: 1

 

What should I do different?

Need to allow more time to finish activities: 7

Nothing, did great/good/fine: 6

Speak more clearly, louder, or slower: 3

Push desks together for group work before class: 3