Banu Banu

Pre-intermediate level


In this lesson Ss learn about writing informal and semi-formal e-mail


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Main Aims

  • To help Ss learn aboout the rules of writing emails in English by studying the differences between semi-formal, and informal emails in the context of e-pals and a teacher introducing herself to a student

Subsidiary Aims

  • To have students write a reply to a semi-formal e-mail in context of Margarita's e-mail.


Warmer/Lead-in (2-3 minutes) • To set lesson context and engage students

To get Ss interested in the topic, T asks Ss several questions and starts a discussion: "What are these people doing in the pictures? Look at their outfits, and surroundings. Do you have a guess about them?"

Exposure (5-8 minutes) • To provide a model of production expected in coming tasks through reading/listening

T explains these people are writing emails and these are photos they attach to their emails. Ss read examples of an informal e-mail and a semi-formal e-mail to provide a model of production expected in coming task. They read the e-mails to find specific information and make notes in a table about their author's job, interests and family. They check answers in pairs and see if their predictions were right. After drawing an example register line (formality scale) on the board and making an introduction about it, the T asks Ss to read again and work out for themselves which letter is informal and which is semi-formal. They check answers in pairs. T elicits the answers as to which one is informal and which one is semi-formal.

Useful Language (5-6 minutes) • To highlight and clarify useful language for coming productive tasks

Ss look at the features of informal writing and works out several rules for themselves using the example e-mail provided in the worksheet. They underline some part of the e-mail for each rule and check their answers with their friend. Then they read email B again, and using the features of the informal e-mail they complete the same points for semi-formal e-mails and see how they are different. Then in pairs, they talk about their answers and justify their answers giving examples from the e-mail.

Productive Task(s) (15-18 minutes) • To provide an opportunity to practice target productive skills

Ss write a reply to Margarita's e-mail. They take one minute for making notes about their job or studies, family, interests and then write. When they finish, they check each other's letters and make corrections if necessary.

Feedback and Error Correction (8-10 minutes) • To provide feedback on students' production and use of language

T reads the e-mails and makes necessarry corrections as a delayed feedback session.

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