LAO CAI EDUCATION AND TRAINING DEPARTMENT
Lao Cai High school No 1
Project based learning – Custom of wedding
in English 12
Nguyen Thi Thanh Hien
Teacher of English
Lao Cai High school No.1
Lao Cai, March 19th 2014
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Table of contents
Theory of project-based learning
What project-based learning is
Advantages and disadvantages of project-based learning
Project-based learning images
1. The aim
Nowadays, English has become more and more important. It is an official
language of business, commerce, aviation and communication. In Vietnam, English is
a compulsory subject in secondary schools. It is now the period of the world’s
integration. Therefore, Teaching English at secondary school should focus on
Project about customs of wedding will help my students in grade 12D improve
their language skills especially communicative skills.
I am now in charge of teaching English for grade 10, and 12. During my
teaching, I have found out that my students only focus on the exams, which leads
them to try to master only vocabulary and grammar. Therefore, they cannot use
English as a language. That means they cannot use it to communicate in real life.
Moreover, in our province my students depend much on the teachers at school. They
do not have many opportunities to practise what they have learnt in the society. In the
terms of teaching and learning English, we have only 3 or 4 lessons a week. The more
difficult thing is that there are 30 to 40 students in one class, so during 45 minutes
rarely does every student have chance to speak out their ideas. To solve this problem I
would like to apply project based learning (Customs of wedding - Unit 3: Cultural
diversity) in my class 12D, in the hope of enhancing my students’ language skills.
3. Real situation
Lao Cai No.1 High School was established in 1961. It is located in the centre of
the province which is a mountainous area in the North of Vietnam. Our school is
equipped with enough facilities for teaching and learning such as wireless Internet, 1
English multi-media room. More than ten classrooms have computers and projectors.
There are 6 Departments with a total of 80 teachers. Each department room has one
computer with Internet and one laptop. There are 8 teachers of English in our school.
All of them are well-educated, hardworking and enthusiastic in teaching.
There are 30 classes (10 classes for each grade) in my school with a student
population of more than 1000. The students are obedient and quite hardworking.
Every year the percentage of grade 12 students passing the national final exam is
about 98%. However, very few students can use English to communicate with other
people as well as foreigners.
In high schools in Vietnam, especially in mountainous areas, there are only 3
or 4 English lessons a week. There is no English environment outside classrooms.
Thus, students’ English skills depend much on what they learn in these lessons. At
present, teachers of English in our school teach students following the text book
designed by the Ministry of Education and Training. We do not know well how to
improve their language skills. After studying about project based learning, I have
decided to apply this method with my students in class 12D to improve my students’
II. THE CONTENT
1.1. What is project based learning?
Project-based learning is a dynamic approach to teaching in which students
explore real-world problems and challenges, with this type of active and engaged
learning, students are inspired to obtain a deeper knowledge of the subject they are
Project based learning benefits students a lot. When engaged, students learn not
only the knowledge and the concept involved, but also learn how to organize and
present their thoughts, how to manage a complex project in a limited amount of time,
and how to collaborate with members of a group.
1.2. Advantages and disadvantages of project- based learning
“One of the major advantages of project work is that it makes school more like
real life” – Sylvia Clard, University of Albrata.
Project-based learning requires students to undertake their own fact findings
and analysis, either from library, internet research, by interviewing the local people or
foreigners or from gathering data empirically, through which students can master the
knowledge as well as improve their skills, especially their language skills.
Project-based learning challenges students to not only learn but also to apply
their new knowledge, which is the goal of our education nowadays.
However, project-based learning has some disadvantages such as time
consuming and the facilities for doing the project followed. In the curriculum, there
are not any periods for project based learning, while the teacher needs some lessons
for instructing the tasks to the students, dividing them into groups, feedback after each
stage of the project; students need time to present their result in front of the class.
1.3. Project based learning images
1.4. The subject
Class 12D with 35 students (33 girls and 2 boys), there is one girl having
difficulty in speaking. This class is studying advanced English, so their level is quite
good. Moreover, they are eager to learning and love English.
2.1. Teaching plan
Time: 45 minutes
Topic: WEDDING CUSTOMS BY COUNTRY
2.1.1. Objectives: At the end of the lesson, students will be able to classify the
different types of wedding customs by country in terms of Wedding preparation,
wedding steps, wedding ceremonies, wedding gifts and wedding colours.
Improving students’ writing skill and presentations
- Customs of Wedding in some specific ethnic minority groups in the Northwest of
Vietnam and in some parts of the world. The similarities and the diferences relating to
the wedding procedures and wedding stuff.
- Combination of knowledge of many different subjects on English, Literarure,
Cilvic Education, Geography and Information Technology
- Working in groups
- Searching and sellecting information and pictures on the internet and other
- Taking photographs
- Making videos
- Interviewing foreigners: Face to face
- Writing skill and presentations
- Writing participants’, teachers’ and classmates’ Feedback
c) Attitude: - Providing more knowledge of wedding in different countries as well
as taking great cares of protecting and preserving one’s own wedding tradition as it
has been changing day by day with the fluence of other cultures.
2.1. 2. Preparations:
a) Teachers: Laptops, overhead projecter, audio recorders, cameras, textbook
b) Students: Computers, cameras, papers, pens, books.
Teacher gives background note of
Step 1: Show a picture of the
wedding, Ask the students if
See the picture, group
discussion, listen and
they talk about the image. Get
them to talk in groups of five
Go to the board and
about what they know about the
write down the ideas
they have just
discussed to each other
Step 2. Work in groups, brainstorm
the Wedding customs. Then
representative of each group
Choosing topic for the
goes to the board and writes
- Group 1: Wedding
customs in the
North of Vietnam
Step 3: Correct and give comments
- Group 2: Wedding
and the focus of the project.
- Wedding customs in the North
- Wedding ceremonies
- Group 3:
- Preparation for the wedding
Preparation for the
- Wedding gifts
- Wedding colours
- Group 4: Wedding
- Wedding party
- Places of the Wedding
Step 4: devide the work to each
- Group 5: Wedding
group and guide students how to
do with the project
- Groups dicussion
a. Vote groups leader
b. Devide the work to each
- Planing the schedule
c. Where to get the materials? (eg.
- Choosing tasks and
Internet, books newspapers, ...)
volunteer to bring
d. How to work with the materials/
project stuff. For
e. Plan the time to do the project
latops, camaras, ...
f. Who will be invited for the
- Contacting with
g. Writing reports
h. Delivering presentations
i. Interviewing (suggestions:
foreigners at Laocai train and bus
stations, David – a British teacher
in Laocai High school for gifted
Listen and take note
students and Amanda – an
American volunteer teacher in
Laocai Teacher training College)
Step 5: Analyze data collections.
Use powerPoint for product
presentations. Note references.
ONE WEEK LATER
CARRY OUT AND COMPLETE THE
1. Instruct students how to deal
PROJECT (2 hours)
- Meet again and do the task together
with data collected
- Analyze in information
- Asking for help if neccessary
2. support some skills in using
- Discuss how to present the products
computers such as how to use
Come to an agreement and complete the
forms, audieo recordings and other work.
3. Observe them to do the work
and give advice.
TWO WEEKS LATER
Giving instruction and
Listen to each presentation
Put up questions
- Group 1: Wedding customs in the North of
- Group 2: Wedding ceremonies
- Group 3: Preparation for the wedding
Fill in the the comment form
- Group 4: Wedding customs
- Group 5: Wedding Gift
Before applying this method, only some of students could know a little about
custom of wedding. In addition, none of them feel confident enough to talk to
foreigner or to stand in front of the class to present in English. When I have applied
this method, I find out that my student have improved many skills such as: searching,
interviewing, gathering and analyzing information, writing an essay as well as
presenting in English in the public. All students in my class got the knowledge about
customs of wedding in all over the world.
2. Closing remarks
With the using project-based learning to engage my students and to help them
have overview about the customs of wedding, my students can make progress in
learning English. I hope that this teaching method will help my students have
improvement in language skills and inspire them to learn English. I will use projectbased learning to teach my students knowledge about other topics.
After having the result of the using this method, I hope the English teachers of
our province can use this method to teach the other classes in their schools.
1. Sylvia Clard, University of Albrata.