You probably remember from the English Forward Instructor Training that bringing realia into the classroom is a great way of getting students to connect the language they learn in the classroom with the outside world. The English Forward lessons suggest you bring in realia whenever it might be possible. Today, we wanted to write about creating a realia station in your classroom or building to give your students an opportunity to review and remind them of what they have learned.
Set up a space in your classroom to serve as your station. Then, as you complete lessons that use realia, set the realia up at the station. Or, if you're able to plan far enough in advance, bring the realia in before you teach the lesson, and let students explore the realia as a way of preparing for the lesson and Activating Background Knowledge. The station can serve as a 3D word wall of sorts.
If you're not quite sure where to start, you can use the "Suggestions for Building a Realia Toolkit" handout from the training to get some ideas. Or you could use the Needs Assessments and the Realia Toolkit Creator to generate a list of realia relevant to your students' interests and goals.