Free English Lessons
Asking for information at a tourist office – listening lesson (a1).
Listen to a conversation at a tourist office, where a man is asking for information. This free English lesson from Oxford Online English will help you to ask questions (and understand the answers) when you ask for information. This lesson is for beginners.
Listen to the dialogue at normal speed here:
or listen to a slower version here:
You can also listen to the dialogue one line at a time:
Woman : Good morning. Man : Hello. Woman : What can I do for you? 1 Man : I’d like some information about Moreton Art Gallery, please. Woman : Moreton Art Gallery? Certainly. It’s definitely worth a visit. 2 Man : OK, great. 3 Woman : What would you like to know? Man : Is it open every day? Woman : Umm… let me check. It’s open every day… except Tuesday. Man : Closed on Tuesdays. OK, no problem. What time does it open? Woman : During the week the opening hours are 10am until 4.30pm. Man : From 10am until 4.30pm. Right. Woman : … and on Saturday and Sunday it closes a bit later, at 6pm. Man : OK, thanks. 3 Oh, just a minute. How much does it cost? Woman : It’s £5.50 for adults and £2.00 for children under 16. Man : Right. Sorry. Just one more question. Does the gallery have guided tours 4 ? Woman : Yes, it does. There are free guided tours, but only at the weekend. Man : OK, wonderful. 3 I think that’s everything. Thanks very much for all your help. Woman : You’re welcome. 5
The exercises below will help you understand some of the language in the dialogue. Read these notes about some of the phrases that the speakers use.
1. “What can I do for you?” means the same thing as “Can I help you?” 2. “It’s definitely worth a visit” means “It’s a good idea to visit.” 3. When someone gives you the information that you have asked for, you can say things like “OK, great”, “OK, thanks” or “OK, wonderful”. 4. If a person gives you a guided tour, they show you a place and tell you important information about it. 5. “You’re welcome” is a polite thing to say when someone says “thanks”.
Asking for Information at a Tourist Office – exercise 1 Comprehension: understanding details
Answer four questions about the information that the woman gives to the man.
Write one letter – a , b , c or d – in each answer space.
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1 . Question
You can hear the dialogue here. Click ‘Hint’ to see a time reference for each question.
If you are not sure about any of the answers, try exercises 2 to 5 and then do exercise 1 again at the end.
If you listen to the dialogue at normal speed, you can hear the answers at these times: 0.05 – 0.26 – 0.42 – 0.50
Asking for Information at a Tourist Office – exercise 2 Listening skill: listening for specific words
If you visit a tourist office, you will probably ask a lot of questions, and the member of staff will ask some too.
Look at four questions from the dialogue and decide which speaker asks them.
Write M if the man asks the question and W if the woman asks it.
Click ‘Hint’ to see a time reference when you can hear each question.
If you listen to the dialogue at normal speed, you can hear the questions at these times: 0.03 – 0.12 – 0.23 – 0.47
Asking for Information at a Tourist Office – exercise 3 Vocabulary: answering questions
If a tourist asks you a question, do you know how to answer?
Match the four questions from the previous exercise with the answers from the dialogue.
Move the sort elements to answer the questions. Then listen again and check.
- I’d like some information about…
- Is it open every day?
- During the week the opening hours are…
- Yes, it does…. but only at the weekend.
Asking for Information at a Tourist Office – exercise 4 Listening skill: dictation
Writing the exact words that you hear is an excellent way to practise your listening. It helps your ear recognise the sounds of English.
Listen to four sentences from the dialogue and write one word in each gap.
0 of 4 Questions completed
0 of 4 Questions answered correctly
1. During the , the opening are 10am until 4.30pm.
2 . Question
2. … and on and , it closes a bit later.
3 . Question
3. It’s £5.50 for and £2.00 for under 16.
4 . Question
4. There are guided tours, but only at the .
Asking for Information at a Tourist Office – exercise 5 Listening skill: hearing weak forms
In exercise 4, you wrote some of the key words in the sentence. Some other words are more difficult to hear because they are not stressed. This means they may be pronounced as weak forms – with the vowel /ə/ made with the lips almost closed and the tongue right in the middle of the mouth.
Listen to the same four sentences again and this time write one unstressed word in each gap. Then practise repeating the sentences with the same pronunciation as the speaker.
1. In this sentence, you need the same word in both gaps. The first time, it’s a weak form and a perfect example of the vowel sound /ə/. The second time, the vowel is different, because the next word starts with a vowel.
During week, opening hours are 10am until 4.30pm.
2. This time the two missing words are different, but they’re both weak forms, so the vowel sound is the same.
And on Saturday Sunday, it closes bit later.
3. In this sentence, you need the same word in both gaps.
It’s £5.50 adults and £2.00 children under 16.
4. This time the two gaps are different. The first time it’s a common verb; the second word is a preposition of time.
There free guided tours, but only the weekend.
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Teaching Speaking: Planning a weekend trip
This lesson focuses on speaking skills and making suggestions . There are language tasks and activities for your students, a focus on pronunciation, a main speaking task and extension activities.
Find the full lesson plan and all the worksheets you need in the downloads section on the right-hand side of this page.
Last year over 800,000 tourists to the UK went to watch a football match as part of their visit. In this lesson, learners will discuss options for a weekend trip to the UK, talking about likes and dislikes and discuss an itinerary. By the end of the lesson, students will be able to make suggestions, talk about likes and dislikes, find out about different UK cities and make a plan for a weekend trip. Learners will use a range of listening, speaking and reading skills.
This lesson links to the club pages on the Premier Skills English website where you can find out more about each Premier League club, the stadium they play in and the city where each club is based.
B1 / B2 (intermediate to upper intermediate)
Teenagers and adults, 80 - 90 minutes.
This lesson is flexible and can be used over two different classes or one 90-minute class. You can also extend or shorten some of the steps depending on the level and needs of your students.
- Worksheet: Planning a weekend trip
- Listening: Audio and transcript
You can find all the materials and a copy of this lesson plan in the download section on the right-hand side of this page.
Introduce the theme of the lesson to the learners:
- Eating local food
- Going shopping
- Going sightseeing
- Relaxing by a pool or at the beach
- Doing some sport or activities
- Watching a concert or going to the theatre
- Going to a football match
- Going to an art gallery or museum
2. Listening for gist
Explain to students that going to see that many tourists go to see football matches as part of their trip to the UK. A Premier League travel agency wants suggestions for things that these people could do in addition to watching a match. First, they are going to listen to (or read a dialogue) of two people planning a weekend trip to Manchester.
Students can listen to see which activities from the lead-in are mentioned. Alternatively, give the students the tapescript and they can do this as a reading activity. Give feedback and see if there are any activities that weren't mentioned.
Answers : Eating local food, going shopping, going sightseeing, going to an art gallery or a museum, going to a football match.
3. Listening for detail
Go through the sentences in Activity 1 on the worksheet. Ask students to listen (or read) again, this time listening for who mentions each activity. Tell students to write K for Kerry, J for John, or N if it is not mentioned.
Answers : Going to a local pub - K Getting up early - J Practising English - N Going to independent shops - K Going to a football museum - K Going to see some paintings - N Visiting a famous building - K Doing a cooking class - N Staying out late - J
4. Focus on Language (Guided Discovery)
Tell students to look at Activity 2 on the worksheet . In pairs, they should underline the phrases in the transcript for making suggestions, saying what you like and saying what you don't like and complete the table. Check the answers.
Making suggestions Shall we ...? We should ... Sounds like your kind of thing. I could ... Maybe ... Why don't we ... Let's ...
Saying what you like I'd like to ... I'd definitely like to ... I wouldn't mind that at all. I'd be up for ...
Saying what you don't like I'm not that into ... I think I'd prefer ...
Ask students if they can add any other phrases to each category and get feedback.
5. Focus on Pronunciation
Write up the following sentences from the transcript on the board:
Do you think we should get up early to make the most of the day? Why don't we check out some of the nightlife? I wouldn't mind that at all. What do you think about the football museum? What do you think? Do you think we should go for a curry?
Practice drilling these and ask students to underline the stressed words in each sentence. Ask them to identify which words in English carry stress (verbs and nouns and words that carry meaning).
Draw attention to how the 'do you' questions are pronounced in connected speech. Drill the /dʒə/ sound and ask students to practice the phrase 'do you think' as /dʒə'θɪŋk / and repeat the sentences.
6. Controlled Practice
Students will now practice using the phrases for talking about likes and dislikes. Write two activities on the board, and in pairs, students have to explain which one they prefer and why. Give students a minute to talk about it, then ask for feedback. Encourage them to use the phrases from Activity 3 and say why they like one activity more - for e.g. I'd prefer to watch a football match because I'm not that into playing. I prefer to be in the crowd. Then erase the activities and write up the next two. Choose any activities that you think are relevant to your students. Below are some suggestions:
Would you prefer to ...
- Watch a football match or play a football match?
- Go out for dinner or cook at home?
- Watch a horror film or watch a comedy?
- Meet a famous sports person or meet a famous singer?
- Go on holiday in your own country, or go abroad?
- Eat some cake or eat some chips?
7. Main Task (Planning a weekend trip)
Write 'Itinerary ' on the board. Explain what the word means (a plan for a trip; including the places you want to visit). Ask students to imagine that they are working for a Premier League Travel agency and they want to organise a weekend itinerary to a UK city. They will have to take the trip themselves first and plan an itinerary together and agree on what they would like to do.
Put students in pairs and assign each pair one Fact File (from the worksheet) . Give students time to read the information about their city, and answer any questions about vocabulary. If you have internet access in class, you can give students extra time to take a look at the web pages and find out more about their city. If they do this, set a time limit (10 - 15 minutes) and ask them to make notes.
Tell students to look back at the table from Activity 2. Remind them to use this language as they are planning their itinerary. They should agree on at least five activities that they want to do over the weekend.
Monitor and at the end of the task give feedback on language use.
8. Extension / Homework
After feedback, you could put students into new pairs and give them a different Fact File, so that they can repeat the activity for a different city. At the end of the task, ask students which city they would be most interested in visiting and why.
Another alternative is to ask students to present their itinerary to the rest of the class or to another pair/group. Ask the students listening to make notes as they listen. At the end, each student can vote on which weekend itinerary they like the best.
We hope you enjoy the lesson!
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Plan a weekend trip.
Learn how to make suggestions.
Learn about cities in the UK.
Speak about likes and dislikes.
Teaching Vocabulary: Describing Food
In this lesson, students create their own Premier League menus and learn lots of words to describe food.
Teaching Grammar: Future Forms
This lesson focusses on the structure ‘going to’, and learners also have the opportunity to focus on speaking and pronunciation.
Teaching Vocabulary: A Greener Match Day
This lesson focusses on vocabulary connected to the environment and being more environmentally-friendly.
Teaching Speaking: Showing Respect & Giving Advice
By the end of the lesson, students will be able to give advice to each other and will have learned more about fair play and respect.
Teaching Vocabulary: Fitness Plans
In this lesson, students create fitness plans for a Premier League player.
ESL Worksheets for Teachers
Check out our selection of worksheets filed under topic: travel and leisure. use the search filters on the left to refine your search..
The topic of this lesson is ethical travel. Students will listen to a radio programme about "voluntourism" and get the chance to discuss the pros and cons of combining volunteering and tourism. Students will learn level-appropriate language to talk about ethical travel with a focus on adjectives. They will read a blog about things to avoid on holiday if they want to be more ethical when they travel and take part in a roleplay with a travel agent. There is the chance to write a short essay on a topic connected to ethical travel and, in addition to this, students have the real-world task of planning an ethical holiday.
by Richard Moon
This lesson is based on information from the Visit Greece website. Students will learn about Greek landmarks, geography and history and get some ideas of what to see and do if they visit Greece. Listening and reading skills will also be tested, and students will have the opportunity to prepare a presentation.
by Gillian Smylie
This lesson is based on information from the Visit Mexico website. Students will learn about Mexican landmarks, geography and history and get some ideas of what to see and do if they visit Mexico. Listening and reading skills will also be tested, and students will have the opportunity to prepare a presentation.
This lesson is based on information from the Visit Australia website. Students will learn about Australian landmarks, geography and history and get some ideas of what to see and do if they visit Australia. Exercises will cover vocabulary specific to Australia and some phrasal verbs. Listening and reading skills will also be tested, and students will have the opportunity to prepare a presentation.
This lesson is based on information from the Discover Northern Ireland website. Students will learn about Northern Irish landmarks and history and get some ideas about what to do and see if they visit Northern Ireland. Exercises will test students’ listening and reading skills and students will have the opportunity to give a presentation.
This lesson is based on information from the Wales.com and Visit Wales websites. Students will learn about Welsh landmarks, language and culture, and get some ideas about what to do and see if they visit Wales. Exercises will test students’ listening and reading skills and the language point will give students practice in asking for clarification when they are unsure about something. There is also an opportunity for students to plan their own trip or do some more research into an aspect of Welsh culture.
This lesson is based on information from the English Heritage and Natural England websites. Students will learn factual information about England's, tourism, politics and history. Exercises will test students’ listening and reading skills and the language point will give students practice in asking for information during a trip to England. There is also an opportunity for students to do some research into planning their own trip.
In this lesson, students will learn some practical information about the geography, politics and history of Scotland, and will get some ideas about what to see and do when visiting Scotland. Exercises will test students’ listening and reading skills and the ability to work out vocabulary from context. The grammar point relates to advice and suggestions , and students will get an opportunity to practise making suggestions and giving advice in a role-play exercise.
Note: this lesson can take 60-90mins.
This lesson is centred around the topic of swimming pools and helps students to describe and compare photographs for work, study, social and exam contexts. The target language includes describing main content, the use of present continuous, the use of the verb look and modals of speculation, and how to organise a spoken description. Students activate the language in a pair work speaking activity and there are two optional extension activities to choose from: a creative writing activity and a caption matching activity.
by Stephanie Hisrchman
This ESP worksheet presents a list of discussion questions designed to encourage hotel managers to talk at length about their profession.
This ESP worksheet presents a list of discussion questions designed to encourage tour operators and agents to talk at length about their profession.
Students define some vocabulary related to cars and driving before reading an article about self-driving cars. The language point is making predictions about the future using will , might , may and could , as well as adverbs and likely / unlikely . Students activate the language in a discussion activity about self-driving cars and drones. There is also an optional extension activity about expressions with the word drive .
by Stephanie Hirshman
Students share experiences of having a day out before listening to a three-way conversation about planning a day out. They are introduced to language for making suggestions ( shall , let’s and how about ), compare how will and be going to are used for making plans and offers, and review the use of will and be going to for predictions. Students plan their own day out in a pair work speaking activity. There is also an optional extension relating to snack foods.
by Stephanie Hirschman
Students watch a short video about a location app called What3words . They then read an article to find out more about the app. The lesson includes vocabulary development and discussion, as well as a language point about adjective phrases with numbers and a pronunciation game with similar sounding words. There is an optional extension activity which provides extra practice with the vocabulary from the lesson.
by Stephanie Hirschman
Students consider what people do on a gap year and why, before listening to a dialogue about gap year plans. They then compare and contrast the forms for talking about future arrangements, plans or intentions and predictions. The language is activated in a speaking activity where students plan and describe a gap year. There is also an optional extension activity showing how gap year experiences could be described on a CV.
Asking for Information
- Pronunciation & Conversation
- Writing Skills
- Reading Comprehension
- Business English
- Resources for Teachers
- TESOL Diploma, Trinity College London
- M.A., Music Performance, Cologne University of Music
- B.A., Vocal Performance, Eastman School of Music
There are a number of formulas used when asking for information in English. Here are some of the most common:
- Could you tell me...?
- Do you know...?
- Do you happen to know...?
- I'd like to know...
- Could you find out...?
- I'm interested in...
- I'm looking for..
These two forms are used for asking for information on the telephone:
- I'm calling to find out...
- I'm calling about...
After you study these constructions, take the asking for information quiz to check your understanding.
More English Functions
Disagreeing Contrasting Ideas Making Complaints Asking for Information Giving Advice Guessing Being Imprecise or Vague Saying 'No' Nicely Showing Preferences Making Suggestions Offering Help Giving Warning Demanding Explanations
- How to Ask Polite Questions in English
- Asking for Information in English
- Please, Thank You and You're Welcome
- Using Vague Expressions - Being Imprecise
- How to Ask Questions in English
- ESL: How to Ask for, Grant and Refuse Permission
- Workplace Communication Skills for ESL Learners
- Telephone English Practice Exercises
- Important Phrases for English Telephone Conversations
- Indirect Questions for ESL
- How to Ask and Answer Basic English Questions
- How to Give Advice With the "Should" Verb
- How to Leave Messages on the Telephone in English
- Asking and Giving Directions in English
- Making Complaints in English
- ESL: Improve Your English Telephone Skills
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“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.” Augustine of Hippo (354 – 430), theologian and philosopher
- April 8, 2021
- General English
Home » Travel
Latest lesson plans
This free ESL lesson plan on travel has been designed for adults and young adults at an intermediate (B1/B2) to advanced (C1/C2) level and should last around 45 to 60 minutes for one student.
Whether it’s exploring new places, or relaxing in familiar ones, everyone loves travelling. In fact, many people learning English are doing so for that exact reason. In the past, travelling to exotic locations was only for the super-rich. Now, with the expansion of budget airlines and cheap packages, the world is a lot more accessible to a lot more people. In this ESL lesson plan on travel, students will have the opportunity to discuss and express their opinions on issues such as how much they like travelling, the best places they have visited and different forms of travel.
This lesson plan could also be used with your students to debate these issues for World Tourism Day , which takes place in September. For more lesson plans on international days and important holidays, see the calendar of world days to plan your classes for these special occasions.
For advice on how to use this English lesson plan and other lesson plans on this site, see the guide for ESL teachers .
Reading activity Before the English class, send the following article to the students and ask them to read it while making a list of any new vocabulary or phrases they find (explain any the students don’t understand in the class):
World of Wanderlust | The Top 25 Best Destinations in the World
The article provides descriptions of some of the most visited tourist destinations in the world. At the start of the class, hold a brief discussion about what the students thought about the article. Have the students visited any of these places? If so, what did they think about them? Which of the places on the list would they most like to visit and why? Can they think of any of the destinations that should not be on the list? Which other destinations should be on a list of the best destinations in the world?
Video activity To save time in class for the conversation activities, the English teacher can ask the students to watch the video below and answer the listening questions in Section 3 of the lesson plan at home. There are intermediate listening questions and advanced listening questions so teachers can decide which would be more appropriate for their students. Check the answers in the class.
The video for this class is called “The Point of Travel” by The School of Life which views travel as a kind of therapy that can help us with our emotional state of mind.
The focus in the class is on conversation in order to help improve students’ fluency and confidence when speaking in English as well as boosting their vocabulary.
This lesson opens with a short discussion about the article the students read before the class. Next, the students can give their opinion on the quote at the beginning of the lesson plan – what they think the quote means and if they agree with it. This is followed by an initial discussion on the topic including the benefits of travel, the student’s favourite holiday/vacation and the best places to spend a holiday/vacation in their country.
After this, students will learn some vocabulary connected with travel such as backpacking , off the beaten path/track and bucket list . This vocabulary has been chosen to boost the students’ knowledge of less common vocabulary that could be useful for preparing for English exams like IELTS or TOEFL. The vocabulary is accompanied by a cloze activity and a speaking activity to test the students’ comprehension of these words. This may also be a good time to explain the difference between travel, trip and journey , as these words are often confused by students
If the students didn’t watch the video before the class, they can watch it after the vocabulary section and answer the listening questions. Before checking the answers, ask the students to give a brief summary of the video and what they thought about the content.
Finally, there is a more in-depth conversation about travel. In this speaking activity, students will talk about issues such as the different types of holiday/vacation people like to go on, how much they like to plan for a trip and the attraction of solo travel.
After the class, students will write about their opinion of travel. This could be a short paragraph or a longer piece of writing depending on what level the student is at. The writing activity is designed to allow students to practise and improve their grammar with the feedback from their teacher. For students who intend to take an international English exam such as IELTS or TOEFL, there is an alternative essay question to practise their essay-writing skills.
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2 thoughts on “Travel”
Hi I donante 5 dollars I can not download the lesson plan travel c1 c2
Hi Elsa. Thank you very much for your donation! You can download the lesson plan by clicking the PDF images at the bottom of the page (one for teachers and one for students). It should open in the new page and then you can click the download arrow at the top right to save them to your computer. Let me know if that works
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Hospitality and Tourism
- 1 Hospitality and Tourism
- 2 Checking in at Hotels and Airports
- 3 Event hospitality
- 5 Holiday reps
- 6 Hospitality & Tourism: Giving information: Tourist information centres
- 7 Travel agents
Hospitality & Tourism: Giving information: Tourist information centres
By Keith Harding
The first lesson plan in this series by Keith Harding gives students practice using written and spoken forms for giving information and making recommendations. The lesson is available at two levels - elementary and intermediate - and contains comprehensive teacher's notes and student worksheets.
Source: Getty Images/ Westend61
Hospitality and Tourism: Tourist Information Centres—Elementary Worksheet
Hospitality and tourism: tourist information centres—elementary teacher's notes, hospitality and tourism: tourist information centres—intermediate worksheet, hospitality and tourism: tourist information centres—intermediate teacher's notes.
- english for tourism
Checking in at Hotels and Airports
Event hospitality, holiday reps.
Your English: Collocations: hospitality
By Sue Kay and Simon Greenall , Tim Bowen
Is your hospitality generous, gracious or lavish ? Tim Bowen looks at the collocates of this friendly word.
ESP bank: Hospitality and tourism: Handling guest complaints in hotels
By Jamie Keddie
This lesson aims to equip students with the language they will need when transferring the skill of handling guest complaints effectively from their own language to English.
ESP bank: Hospitality and tourism: Talking about guest complaints in hotels
Through the use of an authentic interview with a hotel manager, this lesson aims to build up the vocabulary which is necessary to talk about guest complaints in hotels.
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Only registered users can comment on this article., more from esp lesson plans.
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Expand your teaching through travel.
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Adventure in the Classroom: Travel-Inspired Lesson Plan Format
- Posted by - Alyssa Weisenstein
- on - October 6, 2019
The volcanoes unit is one of my favorites to teach. Student buy-in is high because volcanoes are cool, but they have misconceptions that need to be debunked. How can I expect students to connect and truly understand concepts that are physically so far removed from them? Since I can’t bring them to the locations, the adventure has to start in the classroom. Follow this lesson plan format (with earth science examples!) to develop engaging travel-inspired learning.
During a volcano monitoring activity, students (freshmen in Southern Illinois – very far from any volcanoes) analyze the seismic activity on Hawaii to determine if a volcano eruption alert should be issued. They get all rowdy as the seismic activity increases and shout, “It’s going to blow!” “People are going to die, watch out!” The thing is though, Hawaii is formed by shield volcanoes, quiet eruptions of slow-moving lava, not Pompeii-style eruptions. Their vision of volcanoes is colored by what they’ve seen in movies and video games. Most have never even seen a real volcano.
An activity is not enough for students to fully visualize the environments where the content occurs. I’ll break down each step of the lesson plan format to develop engaging travel-inspired learning. Sections of the volcanoes unit will be used as examples throughout, but these are the same steps I follow for all units.
Table of Contents
Goals of Travel-Inspired Learning
- Create a connection to the content
- Envision processes and phenomena that occur throughout the world
- Develop as global citizens who acknowledge and respect different cultures
Don’t feel like you need to change an entire course or even unit to fit the destination-based learning model. Start by tying in a single lesson to a travel experience that really spoke to you. My destination-based lessons started with a simple two-minute story that connected to the content; it wasn’t part of an intentional planning process. I’ve developed the travel-inspired lesson plan format to help you transition to destination-based learning.
When you are passionate about what you’re teaching, students pick up on that. They’ll get a piece of the connection you’re sharing about your travel and how it connects to the content.
Each student has an Exploration Passport that they use for the entire course. Check out this article explaining Explorations Passports and for a FREE passport template. I do NOT let anyone take these out of the classroom. If they leave, you know they’re going to end up left in a locker, in a friend’s mom’s car, and who knows what other random places.
Exploration Passports include a United States map and a world map, so students know where we’re “adventuring.” This addition was made after an alarming number of students couldn’t find states on a U.S. map (including Illinois – where we live).
The pages within the passport are used as exit slips, learning reflections, and students’ own travel dreams.
Lesson Plan Format : Step-by-Step
1. Select Destination(s)
You know your content and you know the travels you’ve loved the most. It’s okay to pick more than one destination that meets the needs of the current concepts. Try to stick to one-to-three destinations, otherwise the presentation becomes too overwhelming and jumbled.
Start your lesson by sharing the adventure destinations for the day. Pictures, a short video, or a quick story are a great introduction. Try to use your own materials when possible. Have a selfie on location? Students enjoy seeing pictures of you at the destinations and you know how they love selfies. Now, students are hooked to your lesson and they’ll be engaged when you tie in the content.
Volcano Example: Hawaiian Islands – Shield volcanoes Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument in Arizona – Cinder cone volcano Eyjafjallajӧkull* in Iceland – Composite volcano (also called strato volcano) *No, I cannot pronounce the name of that volcano. This Icelandic person can though.
2. Show Destination(s) on the Map
Can you locate all 50 states on a U.S. map? Take a minute and try it out on this online quiz . How did you do? Too many high school students struggle with geography. I could no longer sit idly by and observe the geography illiteracy at the high school.
Show the U.S. and/or world maps with the locations, so students are oriented with your destinations. Encourage students to identify and mark the locations on their Exploration Passport maps.
3. Destination Information
Share brief information about the destinations with your students. This isn’t quite the time for content, but cultural information. I teach science, but I also have a responsibility for students to become well-rounded global citizens. I want people to be excited to learn about different areas of the world and the people who make those spaces unique.
- Popular foods
- Popular activities
Volcano Example: Hawaii is the only state to have two official languages: English and Hawaiian. Although Iceland has the word Ice in the name, there is a lot of beautiful green space. Iceland has over 10,000 waterfalls. Arizona is not just a desert! Some areas of Arizona have mountains that are high enough in elevation to have annual snowfall. The average annual snowfall of Flagstaff is about 100 inches.
4. Share a Story
If you haven’t already, share a quick story about your experience at one of the destinations. Far off locations don’t seem real until you build a connection with them. You’re not sharing a novel here, so don’t sweat about it eating into your lesson time. Spending a moment engaging students will increase their overall learning better than more time can.
Volcano Example: Eyjafjallajӧkull last erupted in April 2010 over spring break and it released so much ash and dust that flights from Europe were grounded. A lady I worked with got stuck in Ireland for an extra week because she couldn’t fly out. “Shucks,” to being stuck on vacation for an extra week.
5. Connect with the Content
Now it’s time to connect your destinations to the content. I know there were several steps to get to this part, but by now your students are mesmerized by locations around the world and you have their attention. Quickly share with them where the lesson is headed.
Volcano Example: So, what do all of these locations have in common? They all were formed by volcanoes. However, volcanoes are not all the same. Some have violent eruptions, other quiet eruptions. Now, we’ll take a look at different types of volcanoes and how we can determine which type of volcano formed each destination.
This is the meat and potatoes of your lesson. The bulk of your time will be spent here diving into each of the concepts. Sometimes I finish the notes for a section in a day, other times it is spaced out over a week. You know your content better than anyone else, so you’ve got this part.
Volcano Example: You can access my exact unit slides! Teacher sharing is the best, so feel free to use them. COMING SOON!
7. Reflection/Exit Slip/Etc.
The final step of the lesson plan format is assessing students’ learning. It’s important for students to have time to process what they learned and share that information with you. I’d love to tell you I do this every day, but let’s be real, sometimes I’m just happy to make it through the hour unscathed. In all seriousness, we want to make sure our students are learning and quick formative assessments are a great way to do that. The strategy you select here does not really matter as long as you are doing something. Mix it up to keep students on their toes and play to different students’ strengths.
Ideas for Reflection/Exit Slip
- Students write answers to 2-3 main point questions
- One-word “what I learned”
- Draw images explaining a process
- Share something that surprised you or you didn’t know before
As you review students’ responses, quickly sort them into “got-it” or “not-quite” piles. Before starting the next day’s lesson, check-in with students who misunderstood a major concept.
Volcano Example: Check out the questions at the end of the volcano slides for the reflection questions. Students answer these questions in their Exploration Passports. I can look at them as students submit their passports or before the next class period. COMING SOON!
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Travel Brochures: Highlighting the Setting of a Story
- Resources & Preparation
- Instructional Plan
- Related Resources
Imagine the images and detailed descriptions of the places depicted in a book you've read recently—whether a far-away land, a historical location, or a city just like the one you live in. Settings transport readers to these places, inviting them to consider what it would be like to visit these locations personally. This lesson plan takes that imaginary tourism one step further by asking students to create a travel brochure for locations in texts that they have read. The activity requires students to think about and collect the details mentioned in the text that should be highlighted and conduct additional research on the location as they design their own brochures. This lesson plan uses Al Capone Does My Shirts by Gennifer Choldenko as the example; however, any text in any genre would work well.
Travel Brochure Rubric : Use this rubric to evaluate the organization, ideas, conventions, and graphics of travel brochures students have created. Recording the Setting Bookmark : Students use this reproducible sheet, which can be cut into bookmarks, to record details about a story's setting as the read. Printing Press : Use this online tool to create a newspaper, brochure, booklet, or flyer. Students choose a layout, add content, and then print out their work.
From Theory to Practice
Often, students end a unit of study by writing a traditional research paper. While this is a good way for students to summarize what they have learned, it may not be the most interesting. Beyond that, it frequently results in summary and rote repetition rather than deep critical thinking. In this lesson plan, students go through the research process, but will take that information and turn it into a travel brochure. In her English Journal article, Janet Northrup says, "Unlike a research paper that usually has two readers, the teacher and the student, a pamphlet encourages ownership of a topic, a topic which each student knows will be shared with (and taught to) others. Also, class members develop research skills. They learn how to find information, develop a sense of voice and audience, write an arguable thesis statement, select relevant facts, create an interesting layout, and edit carefully." This project will meet the needs of both students and the teacher. Further Reading
Common Core Standards
This resource has been aligned to the Common Core State Standards for states in which they have been adopted. If a state does not appear in the drop-down, CCSS alignments are forthcoming.
This lesson has been aligned to standards in the following states. If a state does not appear in the drop-down, standard alignments are not currently available for that state.
NCTE/IRA National Standards for the English Language Arts
- 3. Students apply a wide range of strategies to comprehend, interpret, evaluate, and appreciate texts. They draw on their prior experience, their interactions with other readers and writers, their knowledge of word meaning and of other texts, their word identification strategies, and their understanding of textual features (e.g., sound-letter correspondence, sentence structure, context, graphics).
- 4. Students adjust their use of spoken, written, and visual language (e.g., conventions, style, vocabulary) to communicate effectively with a variety of audiences and for different purposes.
- 5. Students employ a wide range of strategies as they write and use different writing process elements appropriately to communicate with different audiences for a variety of purposes.
- 6. Students apply knowledge of language structure, language conventions (e.g., spelling and punctuation), media techniques, figurative language, and genre to create, critique, and discuss print and nonprint texts.
- 7. Students conduct research on issues and interests by generating ideas and questions, and by posing problems. They gather, evaluate, and synthesize data from a variety of sources (e.g., print and nonprint texts, artifacts, people) to communicate their discoveries in ways that suit their purpose and audience.
- 8. Students use a variety of technological and information resources (e.g., libraries, databases, computer networks, video) to gather and synthesize information and to create and communicate knowledge.
- 11. Students participate as knowledgeable, reflective, creative, and critical members of a variety of literacy communities.
- 12. Students use spoken, written, and visual language to accomplish their own purposes (e.g., for learning, enjoyment, persuasion, and the exchange of information).
Materials and Technology
- An assortment of travel brochures
- Various reference materials, print and online
- Things to Include in a Travel Brochure
- Travel Brochure Rubric
- Recording the Setting Bookmark
- Example Brochure Bookmark
- Example Research Notes
- Example Setting Brochure
- Persuasion Map Planning Sheet
Note that the National Geographic Website does have ads.
- Collect travel brochures from travel agents, your local chamber of commerce or convention and visitors bureau, and other sources.
- Make appropriate copies of the handouts for students: Things to Include in a Travel Brochure handout, Example Research Notes , Travel Brochure Rubric , Recording the Setting Bookmark .
- Have a copy of the Example Bookmark , Example Research Notes , and Example Setting Brochure to share with the students.
- Test the Printing Press on your computers to familiarize yourself with the tools and ensure that you have the Flash plug-in installed. You can download the plug-in from the technical support page.
- learn what makes a good travel brochure by examining commercial brochures.
- think critically about text details from a text they have read.
- create a travel brochure that incorporates research skills and text details.
- Where did they go?
- How did their families decide to go to these places?
- What kinds of brochures, travel guides, books, and/or advertisements did their families explore before traveling?
- If students have experience with travel guides and travel brochures, invite them to share what they remember about them.
- Explain that the class is going to create travel brochure about one of the texts that students have read, focusing primarily on the setting of the story.
- Display a variety of travel brochures. Provide time for students to look through the brochures, in groups, pairs or individually. Ask them to pay attention to layout, the highlighted features, illustrations, and the style of the included text.
- Are there maps? photos? diagrams? other illustrations?
- What kind of language and vocabulary is used?
- How is text presented? paragraphs? bulleted lists?
- Are there specific places highlighted? What kind?
- Ask the students if they would like to visit any of the places in the brochures. If the students answer affirmatively, ask them to share what in the brochures made them want to visit. If students answer negatively, ask them to share why they would not like to visit that locale.
- Have students brainstorm what make an effective travel brochure. Record their responses on the board or on chart paper. Some answers may be the pictures, the supporting text, the quotes from visitors, and so forth.
- Explain that while the pictures and photos are added bonuses on travel brochures, the text plays an important role in persuading people to visit a certain place.
- Review persuasive writing with students: In a persuasive writing piece, students begin by determining their goal or thesis. They then identify three reasons to support their argument, and three facts or examples to validate each reason. The Persuasion Map Planning Sheet makes a good visual for the students.
- Brainstorm the kinds of information students need to include in their travel brochure. Record this information on the board. You can also refer to the Things to Include in a Travel Brochure handout.
- Show the students the Travel Brochure Rubric so they know the requirements for the project.
- Once students know the expectations for the assignment, ask them to choose a text for their brochures. Try not to have too many students using the same text. This lesson plan uses Al Capone Does My Shirts by Gennifer Choldenko as the example.
- When all of the students have selected a text for the project, invite them to revisit the text to look for examples and passages about the setting.
- Demonstrate how to use the Recording the Setting Bookmark to note the examples from the text. Display the example bookmark and discuss the details that are included.
- Pass out copies of the Recording the Setting Bookmark for students to use.
- Give students the rest of the session to collect details from their books.
- As students examine their texts for examples, circulate through the room. This is a good time to take observational notes or ask students questions as they are working.
- Once students have found examples from their text about the setting, explain that it’s time for them to conduct research on the setting using the Internet, reference materials, magazines, newspapers, etc. Students can visit Notes from the Road and Travel & Cultures for information on many areas of the world. If the students are using a Science Fiction or Fantasy text, they may have a more difficult time with the research. In that case, they should rely more on their findings in the text.
- Invite students to record their research findings on the Things to Include in a Travel Brochure handout. Share with them the example research notes .
- As students are researching, help as needed.
- Briefly demonstrate the Printing Press for students. Show the students how they can use the tool to create their finished product. Place students’ emphasis on thinking about the content for the brochures and flyers, as the Printing Press will make the process of making the final product a simpler one.
- You can also share with the students an example setting brochure of a book that the class has read so they can see what they can include in their own brochures.
- After students have gathered clues from their texts as well as completed research on their setting, they are ready to begin working on creating their travel brochures, highlighting the setting of a text using the Printing Press .
- Assist students as needed.
- Remind students that they cannot save their work on the Printing Press so they will need to work diligently on their project.
- Once all of the students have completed their brochures using the Printing Press , allow time for the students to share their brochures with the rest of the class.
- Assess the students work using the rubric .
- Instead of making a travel brochure about their setting, students could design a postcard highlighting one of the locations mentioned in their text. Students can publish this postcard using the Postcard Creator .
- Pairing the brochures with the text they accompany would make a good classroom or library display.
Student Assessment / Reflections
- For formal assessment, use the rubric . Additionally, you can ask students to freewrite on the following reflective question: After completing this activity, what role do you think the setting plays in a text? Will you pay more attention to the setting now that you have completed this activity?
- Informal assessment can come from observations, interviews, and examination of the students' bookmarks and notes.
- Lesson Plans
- Calendar Activities
- Student Interactives
- Professional Library
Students read a section from On the Road that deals with cross-country travel and reflects Kerouac's unique writing style. Students then attempt to write a narrative using Kerouac's stream-of-consciousness style.
The interactive Printing Press is designed to assist students in creating newspapers, brochures, and flyers.
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Asking for travel information.EP1. (pg.24).
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