ESL Crime Vocabulary Lesson Plan

Instructor: Kandi Young

Kandi has degrees in Communications, Human Services, Education and Computer Science. She is a Business, Marketing, and Technology instructor with a Master's degree in Education.

This lesson focuses on teaching ESL students vocabulary associated with misdemeanor crimes. Several activities are included to engage all styles and levels of learners while allowing students to practice writing and speaking skills.

Learning Objectives

After this lesson, students will be able to:

  • Define words related to misdemeanor crimes
  • Use vocabulary words in correct context when speaking and writing
  • Apply words to scenarios depicting the crime

Length of Lesson

30 minutes to 1 hour



Pose and respond to specific questions with elaboration and detail by making comments that contribute to the topic, text, or issue under discussion.


Interpret information presented in diverse media and formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively, orally) and explain how it contributes to a topic, text, or issue under study.


  • Crime scene photos/scenarios
  • Index cards
  • Handouts containing vocabulary words and definitions
  • Internet access (for Activity 3 only)


  • Misdemeanor: a criminal offense defined as less serious than a felony
  • Felony: an offense, such as murder or burglary, more serious than misdemeanors (felonies are commonly punished in the U.S. by imprisonment for more than a year)
  • Theft: the act of stealing, which is the wrongful taking of the personal goods or property of another person
  • Assault: an unlawful physical attack carried out on another person, or an attempt, threat or offer to do violence to someone
  • DUI/OVI: driving under the influence/operating vehicle impaired
  • Shoplifting:to steal (merchandise) as a shoplifter
  • Vandalism: deliberate and malicious damage to a person's property

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