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Shawn Ford

HATESL/ DSLS Brownbag Presentation




Get PFUNK-E!: A 6-step Approach for ESL Reading Development

Shawn Ford, ESOL Program, Kapiolani Community College



How do we best scaffold ESL students throughout the process of reading development? Teachers and researchers have proposed many ideas and developed materials for different stages of the process. At this brownbag session, participants will learn about a 6-step approach for ESL reading development that integrates the best of these ideas and materials. Highly flexible and appropriate for students at all levels of reading development, PFUNK-E integrates current reading theory and practice into a cohesive series of activities and assignments.


PFUNK-E (different/ strange, but cool) is:


P- Preview the text

F- Find vocabulary

U- Understand the text

N- Notice grammar

K- Know the text

E- Explain the text



Step 1


P- Preview the text to form hypotheses about the text


(Thanks to Dr. Day for pointing out this missing step in the previous version, FUNN)



Step 2


F- Find vocabulary to define unfamiliar words for reading comprehension

          Provide students with alternate version of textbook reading

o        Reproduce article using Canoscan scanner w/ optical program OmniPage

o        SEE SAMPLE

          Scan text to Find unfamiliar vocabulary and highlight them on alternate version

o        I want students to do any translating and vocabulary work on the alternate version of the text and leave the textbook clean:

Reading for comprehension vs. Reading to develop English reading

          Check knowledge of MFWs and AWs using list generated from corpus

o        Web_Vocabulary_Profiler.html

o        vocab_results.html

o        Provide vocabulary checklist


Vocabulary Check:



Never heard word and dont know it

Heard word but dont know it

Know word some but dont use it

Know word but dont

use it

Know word and use it






















































































          Compare highlighted words with MFW and AW lists and add words to vocabulary log for vocabulary quizzes

Vocabulary in context and vocabulary in isolation

          Work on vocabulary log to find definitions, parts of speech and usage of unfamiliar words


Vocabulary Log


Part 1 Directions: Choose 25 words from the Reading 1 Vocabulary Check worksheet and enter them into the chart below. These words should be ones that you indicated not knowing very well. Provide the part of speech as the word is used in the text, and your own complete definition based on the way the word is used in the text. DO NOT enter anything in the Sentence row until after you have done Part 2 of this worksheet.



Part of Speech

Your own Definition










Part 2 Directions: Make complete, original sentences for each of the vocabulary words that you entered in the previous chart based on the way each vocabulary word is used in the text. Underline the chosen vocabulary word in each sentence. After you get feedback from me, enter the corrected version of each sentence in the appropriate Sentence row according to its vocabulary word. You will use the chart in Part 1 as a study guide for your personal vocabulary quiz for Reading 1.


  1. Sentence:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
  2. Sentence:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

          These sentences become corrected input for students to use in their text-based writing assignments, which will be a focus of future feedback


          Provide individualized vocabulary quizzes based on student vocabulary logs

Students may take more ownership of their vocabulary learning if it is student-centered


Directions: Provide the part of speech as each word is used in the text, your own complete definition based on the way the word is used in the text, and an original sentence based on the way the word is used in the text. Use the other side if necessary.



Part of Speech

Your own Definition










cloze quizzes test vocabulary and grammatical knowledge in context and can be used to generate discussions of guessing vocabulary meanings from context: contextual clues such as pluralism, word order, topic/support, etc.


Directions: Fill in the 10 blanks in the text with one of the correct words from the following list. Each word will only be used once.












The ____________ to English was ____________ by another change that took place in second-____________ immigrant families. While first-generation ____________ still tended to think of themselves as Irish, English, Italian, or German, their children and grandchildren clearly considered themselves American. A story that was told by an English immigrant ____________ a ____________ that must have taken place in most ____________ households. One day the immigrant's son came home from school, where his class had been learning about the American ____________.



Step 3

U- Understand the text: read the text to build comprehension

not the same as conversation, discussion, speech, etc.

Work on discussion questions in groups, then as a class



Step 4

N- Notice grammar to build grammar structures and reading comprehension

Work on Input Analysis materials




The result of the first generation's sacrifices first became visible in the generations that followed. Within three generations, most non-English-speaking immigrant families had acquired a new first language. The children and grandchildren of immigrants who spoke Swedish, German, Italian, and more than twenty other languages became native speakers of English. This process of language shift is one of the most significant features of immigration history in the United States. Although the process did not guarantee these generations would become wealthy and successful, it was essential for economic advancement and for full integration into the mainstream of society.



Directions: 10 collocations are highlighted in Reading 1 above. These are the most common collocations using the preposition of and for found in this text. Find and highlight or underline 12 more of collocations and 1 more for collocation in the text. Be aware that several uses of of and for found in the text are not collocations. Remember, collocations are words that occur together with high frequency.


Afterwards, write 2 original sentences for each of the 10 collocations listed below, based on the way the collocations are used in Reading 1.


bunch of - a/the bunch of ___





diversity of - a/the/(ref.) diversity of ___







Step 5

K- Know the text for mastery of the content

repeated reading helps to build fluency and comprehension

I use comprehension quizzes as a means of helping students practice how to find information and how to take quizzes in general


Directions: Using the passage in your textbook, answer the following questions as completely as possible.


YES/ NO Questions (circle YES or NO)

  1. Did Gary Hart become the U.S. president in 1987?                                                YES  NO
  2. Are politicians, movie stars, and royalty often called paparazzi?               YES  NO

Comprehension Questions (provide a short answer)

  1. What are the two views about whether a politician's personal life is relevant to his or her performance in the job?                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  2. What are the paparazzi?                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Short Essay Question (provide a response in paragraph form)

In paragraph 1, three ethical issues are presented as questions. Which issue do you think is the most important to society? Explain your answer.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             



Step 6

E- Explain the text.




P- Preview the text

F- Find vocabulary

U- Understand the text

N- Notice grammar

K- Know the text

E- Explain the text


This approach helps me structure my assignments around each reading, and it helps me provide adequate scaffolding for my students.


This approach provides students with various types of language development in the context of each reading.


This approach helps both student and teacher view reading as a process, just as we commonly view writing as a process.



Discussion Questions


Based on what you know about reading and your students and their needs, is PFUNK-E missing any steps?


Would PFUNK-E work in EFL contexts as well?


Would you get PHUNK-E?


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contents (c) 2002 Shawn Ford/ Webb-Ed Press