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This is a nice lesson which not only teaches transportation vocabulary but also how to ask and reply to a question on how they arrived at their school.

Lesson Procedure:

Warm Up and Maintenance:

See our "Warm Up & Wrap Up" page.


New Learning and Practice:

Play vocab flashcard treasure hunt1. Play vocab flashcard treasure hunt
Before class, prepare flashcards of the vocab from the song (walk, bus, bicycle, car, train, boat, airplane, rocket) and hide them around the classroom – behind a chair, on the window sill, in a book, etc. In class, sit your students down and start hunting around the room, gesturing that you are looking for something. "Find" one of the flashcards and look relieved and happy to have found it. Indicate that there are 7 more flashcards to find and get everyone to hunt around the room helping you to look for the flashcards. Once all of the flashcards have been found sit everyone down again.

2. Teach transport vocab
On the board, draw a simple picture of your school at one end of the board and your home (a simple house) at the other. Alternatively, you can use photos of both. Tell your students what each place is ("This is our school – here!", "This is my house. I live here!" (maybe draw a picture of yourself above the house)).

You are going to teach the vocab in order of the song you are going to sing a bit later on. Pull out the first card ("walk"). Put the card on the board between the school and your house. Say slowly "I got here on foot … on foot … on foot.", whilst doing the song gesture of walking on the spot. Get all of your students to stand up and walk on the spot as they say "on foot .. on foot …".

Next pull out the bus flashcard and replace the walk flashcard with it on the board. This time say "I got here by bus … by bus … by bus" whilst doing the song gesture of driving a bus and beeping the horn. Get all of your students to stand up and pretend to drive a bus and beep the horn as they say "by bus … by bus …".

Teach transport vocab

Continue doing this for all of the cards and actions of the songs. For the last one – "rocket" – get everyone to count down from 10 to 1 and then jump as they blast off!

3. Play "Vocab Art Gallery"
If you have just a few students, draw some squares on the board in a row for each student to draw in (these are their picture frames). You’ll need one square (or picture frame) per student. Play "Vocab Art Gallery"Make sure the squares are at a good height so everyone can reach.

If you have a lot of students, give each student a piece of paper and have them draw 8 boxes (picture frames) on the paper. Tell everyone they are going to draw some pictures.
For smaller classes have your students stand in front of one of the squares on the board. Say "Draw … I got here … by boat"). Everyone should draw a picture of a boat in their square (or the first square of the sheet of paper for students in larger classes). Give a minute for this (you can use an egg timer for fun!). When time is up say "STOP!". Now, you are the judge. Walk around looking at the pictures and give some comments ("hmmm, not bad" … "oh, very nice!", etc.). Finally, award a winner for the best drawing and get everyone to clap.

Now, erase the pictures on the board (or if using paper move onto the second square) and go onto the next vocab item (e.g. by bike). Again, judge the pictures and select a winner. Go through all of the pictures, each time electing a different winner – try and make sure everyone wins at least once. If you have more than 8 students you can choose joint winners.

4. Sing the "How Did You Get Here Today?" song
Put the flashcards on the board in order of the song (or use our song poster). Run through the gestures (see above) first. Then play the song and sing along doing the gestures. If this is the first time to sing the song, play it a second time.

Sing the "How Did You Get Here Today?" songLyrics for " How Did You Get Here Today?"

How did you get here today?
How did you get here today?

Verse 1:
I got here on foot
I got here by bus
I got here by bicycle
I got here by car.

How did you get here today?
How did you get here today?

Verse 2:
I got here by train
I got here by boat
I got here by airplane
I got here by rocket.


10 – 9 – 8 – 7 – 6 – 5 – 4 – 3 – 2 – 1
Blast off!

(download MP3 here)

Gestures for "How Did You Get Here Today?"

Some simple actions can be used with this song:

  1. Do the question pose (palms up, puzzled look on face) for the question “How did you get here today?”, but point downwards (to the ground) for the “here” part.
  2. As the song plays do the following actions:
    • on foot: walk on the spot.
    • by bus: pretend to drive a bus and beep the horn.
    • by bicycle: pretend to be cycling and ring a bell.
    • by car: pretend to drive a car and beep the horn.
    • by train: do the train gesture – moving your hands around like a wheel and “chu-chu”ing.
    • by boat: do wave motions with your hands.
    • by airplane: pretend to be an airplane by holding your arms right out.
    • by rocket: put your arms above your head, finger tips touching to make a rocket shape. Keep this shape for the countdown and then jump for the blast off.

We also have a video that you can stream in class to sing along with (Internet connection required):

How Did You Get Here Today?

5. Read classroom reader "Let's Climb a Mountain!"
Read classroom reader "Let's Climb a Mountain!"Before class, download and print off the reader " Let's Climb a Mountain!". As you go through each page, point to the pictures, elicit each key word, and have your students say how each person got to the top of the mountain, for example:

Teacher: What is this? (pointing at the car)
Students: It's a car!
Teacher: Yes, that's right! How did the man get to the top of the mountain?
Students: By car.
Teacher: Let's check ... (reading from the story) ... I got here by car. Right!

Get the students really involved in the story by asking lots of questions (e.g. eliciting colors) and getting them to do the actions of each vehicle.

After reading the story, give out a reader worksheet to each student and read through the story one more time (without stopping for questions, etc.) as students draw the modes of transport onto their worksheets.  Then go through the answers as a class.


Alternatively, watch our video version of the reader (Internet connection required):

6. Practice asking and answering "How did you get here today?" with a class survey
Before class, print out the How Did You Get Here Today? Survey. Draw enough columns for each student in the class and write their names at the top. Then copy enough for all of your students.

Start by modeling – hold up your survey and point out the names at the top. Choose one student and ask "How did you get here today?". Elicit a full answer (E.g. "I got here by bus") and show everyone how to fill in the survey (by drawing a circle in the correct cell). Do with a few students until everyone understands. If someone gives an impossible answer (e.g. rocket), show an expression of shock and then say, "Noooo, that can’t be right!" and have a laugh, but try to elicit their true answer. Then, give out a survey to everyone.

First, get everyone to find their own name and circle their answer. Then get everyone to mingle about asking and answering and filling in their surveys. When everyone has finished, complete your survey sheet by asking the class for the answers (e.g. "How did Naomi get here today?").

Practice asking and answering "How did you get here today?" with a class survey

Wrap Up:

1. Assign Homework: "How did you get to school today?" worksheet.
2. Wrap up the lesson with some ideas from our "Warm Up & Wrap Up" page.

Print Outs / Worksheets:


  • on foot

    on foot

  • school bus

    school bus

  • bicycle


  • car


  • train


  • ship


  • tag


  • rocket



Songs & Readers:

Additional materials:

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