Jonathon Burch Jonathon Burch

Written text messages - problem-solving
Upper Intermediate B2 level


In this lesson, Ss will learn and practice how to write personal chat/telephone messages in the context of problem-solving. After seeing a model conversation provided by the teacher, Ss will discuss and brainstorm different ideas to solving problems and what type of language to use with whom. Teacher will then elicit and review some possible functional language they can use in their written task. Finally, Ss will conduct a written problem-solving text message conversation with a partner selected from four possible scenarios.


Main Aims

  • To provide product and process writing practice of text/chat messages in the context of problem-solving

Subsidiary Aims

  • To provide review and practice of language used for problem-solving


Lead in (5-6 minutes) • To generate interest in the topic, activate existing knowledge and provide learners a model of the task

Teacher will tell Ss he had a conversation with a friend of his the previous day via telephone text message and that he would like them to read the conversation and give their opinion about it. Ss will be given transcript of conversation, which is about the teacher asking his friend when he will be paid back money he lent him previously. Students will be asked to read the text and answer three questions on the text with their partners. Open class FB after discussion in pairs.

Preparing to write (6-7 minutes) • To provide opportunity to prepare for the task

Ss will be given a handout with four different scenarios for text/chat conversations where they have to solve a specific problem. Ss will be asked to read through the scenarios and answer three questions for each scenario individually and then discuss these with their partners. Open class FB.

Brainstorming (4-5 minutes) • To generate ideas for the writing task

Ss will then brainstorm ideas on the WB based on their discussions for possible solutions to the problems in the scenarios given.

Useful language (5-6 minutes) • To provide and clarify language which learners may find useful for completing the writing task

Teacher will review functional problem-solving language from the model text and elicit other examples from SS. Teacher will clarify that functional language is only there to help SS and that they do not have to use it in the written task. Teacher will tell Ss they can also use vocabulary and grammar from previous lesson.

Writing task (15-16 minutes) • For Ss to practice their written fluency in relation to chat/text messages for problem-solving

Ss will then be handed lined paper and asked to choose one scenario from the list of four given out earlier in pairs. One student is then A and the other B in their chosen scenario. Student A then begins the conversation by writing the first lines on the paper and then hands it to B who replies. The paper is passed back and forth until the problem is solved. When finished, pairs swap their conversations with other pairs. Teacher writes following questions on board: How was each problem solved? Do you think they found a good solution? Pairs then discuss. If time allows, students change partners and attempt a different scenario and swap results as before.

Feedback (4-5 minutes) • To allow ss to compare results of the task

Finally, Ss will hang their conversations on the walls of the classroom and will be asked to read each other's writing and decide which was the best or funniest one. Teacher will monitor throughout and conduct any error correction if necessary.

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