Overseas Phone Call from Turkmenistan
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- Subject(s): Social Studies & Geography
- Region / Country: Central & Eastern Europe / Turkmenistan
- Grade Level(s): 3–5
- Related Publication: Podcast | Overseas Phone Call from Turkmenistan
- Duration: 30 minutes
For many ESOL students, deciphering and extracting information without visual cues is a challenging task. With this directed listening activity, students will use "previewing" strategies to better comprehend and learn about the experience of a Peace Corps Volunteer: likes, dislikes, types of animals, festivals, language, food and sports may be discussed. Students will also be able to locate the country on a map.
For 50 years, the Peace Corps has helped communities around the world. Volunteer Voices is a collection of audio stories from just a few volunteers who have served since 1961. With cellphone and internet technology, Peace Corps Volunteers get to talk with U.S. classrooms they've been communicating with through the Correspondence Match program.
Visit peacecorps.gov to learn more about Peace Corps programs and Volunteer activities in the country.
- Overseas Phone Call from Turkmenistan Podcast | Transcript | Handout
- The U.S. Department of State - Turkmenistan
- The CIA World Factbook - Turkmenistan
- World map
- Venn diagram
- Cultural science handout
- Vocabulary picture/word cards – 1 or more set
- To listen for specific information without the help of visual cues and correctly answer questions
- To paraphrase information forming complete sentences
- To locate Turkmenistan on a world or regional map and two major cities
- To formulate 2 or more questions concerning Turkmenistan culture, customs, geography and climate to deepen understanding
- To compare and contrast Turkmenistan culture and customs with those of the United States using a Venn diagram
- To summarize and synthesize information
- Have students locate their state and Turkmenistan on a world map, then estimate the distance between the two locations.
- Discuss with students some characteristics of Turkmenistan: food, sports, language, geography, climate, education, etc. Have students form questions about other information they'd like to learn about Turkmenistan.
- Distribute Overseas Phone Call from Turkmenistan handout. With students, preview the questions and have them predict answers. Ask students to explain their prediction/s.
- Listen to Overseas Phone Call from Turkmenistan podcast. Depending on language levels, either teacher strategically pauses or students raise their hand if they want to pause the recording, then answer handout questions. Play twice or more if necessary.
- In pairs or with whole class:
- Have students review answers by verbally summarizing information learned, forming complete sentences. Additionally, students could write their summary sentences.
- Students discuss characteristics of Turkmenistan and the United States (or their community/city/state), documenting them in the Venn diagram.
- Students share what the learned about Turkmenistan.
- Have students locate two cities on a map of Turkmenistan.
- Students estimate and calculate the distance between their town/state and Turkmenistan.
- Students research which is geographically larger: their state or Turkmenistan.
Social Studies/Language Arts
- Create a travel brochure or poster advertising Turkmenistan.
- Have students create their own handout to accompany the podcast.
- If students' questions about Turkmenistan are not answered during the podcast, have students investigate and report back with their findings.
- Create a podcast
- Each student researches a Peace Corps country using the Cultural Science handout.
- In pairs or small groups of 3-4 students, interviews are conducted where one student is the Volunteer and the others are "students" asking questions.
- Students rotate interchanging roles and recording their interviews.
- Sign up for Correspondence Match and correspond with an actual Peace Corps Volunteer serving in Turkmenistan.
- Sign up for Speakers Match and have a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer who served in Turkmenistan share her/his experiences.
- Create vocabulary picture word cards or definition cards for unknown words.
- With vocabulary picture word cards, have students do a categorization sort (may require more than one set of cards):
- Distribute all cards to students. Teacher calls out or writes a category on the board. All students with a card that fits that category stand up and say a sentence about their card. Students call out other words/items that would fit in that same category.
- One set of cards is given to each pair or small group (3-4 students). With all cards on the table, students sort and categorize cards. As teacher circulates, students explain reason for grouping.
- View other slide shows from Peace Corps Volunteers based in the same country.
- Completion of Overseas Phone Call from Turkmenistan handout
- Students verbally produce complete sentences summarizing information.
- Students locate Turkmenistan on a map of the region
- Students locate two large cities on a map of the country
Framework and Standards
- There is much to learn from living in a different culture and country.
- What can be learned from living in a different culture and country?
PreK-12 English Language Proficiency Standards
Standard 1: C ommunicate for social, intercultural, and instructional purposes within the school setting.
Standard 2: Communicate information, ideas, and concepts necessary for academic success in the area of social studies.
Common Core State Standards for Speaking and Listening
Comprehension and Collaboration
- Engage in discussions with diverse partners
- Evaluate information presented in diverse media and formats
- Evaluate a speaker's point of view
- Summarize the points a speaker makes
U.S. National Geography Standards
Essential Element I: The World in Spatial Terms
- Use maps and other geographic representations to acquire, process, and report information
Essential Element II: Places and Regions
- Physical and human characteristics of places