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Shared Tasks

Shared tasks present the class with an objective to which each student can contribute at his/her own level.  


Examples of shared tasks


Beginning-level students can collaborate in finding the different sections of the newspaper and writing their titles. Intermediate students can research the Internet or sections of the newspaper for information of specific interest (e.g., shopping, a famous person). Advanced students can prepare reports on news articles from the Internet or newspapers.

Planning a class outing (e.g., a trip to a museum) 

Beginning level students can check bus schedules, admission prices, or phone for information from the museum's answering machine. More advanced students can plan transportation routes using maps, or research the topic for the outing.

Publishing a class newspaper

Beginning-level students can draw a picture of their home, job, or family and write a few words to describe the picture. Intermediate students can attempt to write a simple story about an experience. Advanced students can collaborate to write about an experience they have shared (e.g., how they felt on their first day in school.)         

Team Work

Team work divides the class into two (or more) teams. Each team contains beginning, intermediate, and advanced students.  

Examples of team work

A spelling bee

Two or more teams in the class can compete in such activities as spelling bees. The teacher adjusts any challenges according to each student's ability. 


Each group can compete to create the best poster to announce an important event. 

Group Work

Group work can offer a number of choices of divisions within the class. 

Examples of group work

Dividing the class into ability groups allows students to function at their own level. Students feel satisfaction after performing such tasks.  

Skill groups allow students with the same deficiencies to practice together, e.g., practicing past tense, recognition of fragment phrases, or the use of articles

Confidence building efforts, e.g., writing and producing a class play. All students can contribute at some level.   

Cross-ability groups, e.g., exercises in problem solving. 


Pair Work

Pair work allows students to work comfortably together and to learn about each other.   

Students interviewing each other is an  example of pair work. 

Examples of an interview

Questions for Maria.

Interviewed by Juan. The answers are written here.

  1. What is your favorite season?
  1. What kind of food do you like?
  1. Where do you eat lunch?
  1. What did you do last Saturday?


1. summer

2. McDonalds.

3. the cafeteria.

4. I went to the movies.