Opening a Bank Account

Tango Group Project Working Description
EDU134 - Teaching ESL to Adults: A course leading to Colorado’s ABEA Certification
Red Rocks Community College, Spring 2016 (Leecy Wise, Instructor)
BY Sheryl Michael, Maria Soto, and Mary-Lynn Goberis

I. Activity Topic:  Opening a Bank Account

II. Description of the student population to be addressed with levels defined:
These activities are designed for a group of ESL adult intermediate students enrolled in a Workforce Development English language learning program. 

III. Reading and Writing skills that you will integrate into the activity.

  1. To determine missing words using a text’s context (a cloze exercise similar to
  2. To find the main idea, important facts, and supporting details (
  3. To write a professional email asking for information

VI.  Description of at least two reading and writing activities taken from this module's resources. (Reference the resources.)

Lesson (1 hour 45 minute class period): Opening a Bank Account

Learning Objectives: In completing this activity, student will...

  1. practice key banking vocabulary.
  2. fill in missing words that you think the author might have used from a text on Opening a Bank Account.
  3. recall and identify supporting details in a text.
  4. write a professional email.

Expected Prior Knowledge:

It is anticipated that prior to facilitating this activity, students will have...

  1. become familiar with key banking terms (bank, credit union, checking account, savings account)
  2. identified the differences between a bank and a credit union
  3. become familiar with writing professional emails

Warmup (5-10 minutes):

  1. List as many words related to banking that you can remember from yesterday’s discussion in 1 minute.
  2. After 1 minute ask for a student volunteer to list the words the class generated in 1 minute.
  3. Ask the class to briefly define each word.

Reading (45 minutes) :   What a Bank Can Do for You

  1. Read through the article, “What Can a Bank Do for You?” so you understand the context of the piece.
  2. After reading the text, work with a partner to fill in the blanks with the word you think the author might have used. This is only one word per blank, and there is only one right answer per blank.
  3. It’s all right to guess for this activity. You will not be marked wrong for your wrong answers, but I would like you to try your best. Misspelled words are counted correct, but synonyms are not.
  4. We will check your answers as a class.

Answer Sheet for Handout

To check answers, students will take turns reading the article. They will read the words they believe to be correct. If there is disagreement, a short discussion will follow.

Reading Check (5-10 minutes): What a Bank Can Do for You*
Read the following statements to students. Ask them to state yes or no.

1. If you will spend your money quickly, put it in a savings account. yes       no
2. If you use the ATM at your own bank, you have to pay a fee.      yes       no
3. A credit union is similar to a bank. yes       no
4. You can get information about your bank accounts by calling the bank
    or by using the ATM or internet. yes       no
5. If you cash your paycheck at your own bank, you have to pay a fee. yes       no

* This site as a long list of additional related activities for those who wish to explore and practice more.

If there are any disagreements in responses between students, ask them to go back to the text to confirm responses once all 5 questions have been asked.

Reading (30 minutes + HW): Opening a Bank Account

Your task is to write a professional email to a bank or credit union of your choice that asks for specific information that is needed to open an account with that bank or credit union.

  1. Read through the article, “How to Open a Bank Account.”
  2. Underline information that needs to be clarified with a given bank or credit union (i.e. what information will you include in your email to the bank).
  3. Once you have underlined key information, compare what you have underlined with a classmate. Talk about any differences in what is underlined.

HW: Write a draft of a professional email to a bank or credit union of your choice that asks for specific information that is needed to open an account with that bank or credit union.


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