How to make vocab resources with a receptive focus - good for GCSE R/L revision

Vocab resources with a receptive (or input) focus ask the question "what does ... mean?" rather than "how do you say ...?"

The focus is on students' receptive skills (listening, reading) rather than on productive skills (speaking, writing), so they are less challenging for students. We want to know what they can understand rather than what they can produce themselves.

The screen image above shows a textivate Match resource which has the following characteristics:

  • The matching items are listed in the order L2 >>> L1
    This means that the target language item will be presented first, with students tasked with understanding the meaning (and looking for it in L1).

  • Text-to-speech has been added to the L2
    Provided that students make sure that TTS is turned on (which they can do on the activity screens), they will hear as well as see the target language word or phrase. TTS is added to the resource via the "Extras" tab. See this blog post all about TTS on textivate.

  • All output-focused activities have been removed
    This means that all of the activities present the L2 and test students understanding of the L2 word or phrase with reference to the L1. None of the activities require the student to spell anything, or work on re-building words in the L1. See this blog post about excluding particular activities from the textivate menu.
    To exclude all of the output-focused activities, simply select all of the activities listed on the bottom 2 rows in the "Extras" tab, as shown in the image below:

Here is a link to the resource shown above: GCSE French environment - RECEPTIVE


Why not set a Challenge each week based on this sort of resource? You could award prizes (according to your school's reward system) for the highest scorers, and you could require all students to score a specified minimum number of points each week (1000???). Doing this sort of thing regularly should make an impact on your students' receptive understanding of key vocab.

(See this blog post about Challenges on textivate)


Related posts:

How to make match resources with an output focus