The English Classroom

A GUIDE TO IMPROVING STUDENT LITERACY

The Situation

The start of your lessons are disorganised.


The Solution

The Do Now Activity is just that: an activity that students complete after walking into the classroom. The activity must be obvious to the student and they should be able to do it with minimal instruction from the teacher. You might like to let them get started immediately, or give them a 10 second snapshot of the task. Either way, it has to be obvious and straightforward.

The below example has the following:

  • Stepped out instructions (What to do first, second and so forth). What instruments they will need to have. How they need to organised themselves.
  • An image to engage the learner.
  • A clear title.

You might like to add a time limit for the task, or this might be a verbal reminder.

In the two activities below, students look at the image and have to consider aspects of the characters personality and interests. This was to prepare them for a lesson on character development.


A fantastic website that you could use is The most dangerous writing app. In this app, you can provide students with a prompt. They need to write as much as they can without stopping. If they stop, the writing is lost. If they can write until the time limit finishes then the writing is kept.

Note: As you get students trained to your protocols in the classroom, you might choose to use lesson instructions on this slide.


You might simply ask a question. This question functions as both a hook and a do now activity. It forwards what they might be learning about in the lesson and hopefully you have hinted previously to engage your students!



You might like to get students to make predictions. Here, students have to create an idea for a story based on each of the story title. This was a great discussion about the important of a interesting and inviting title.



A do now activity is a great way to engage your class quickly and build strong habits in your lesson design.

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