TIPS FOR TEACHERS
teachers we face a great challenge in our classrooms. This challenge is that
our students really learn English, not only to pass exams or to the next grade.
This a compilation of tips that could help you to improve your teaching practicum
in the language classroom.
Change games and activities regularly. Variety will catch students' attention,
which sometimes is unfortunately low.
the rythm of the class, I mean, combine activities which require a lot
of energy with those which are more relaxed. This way your students will
not get bored or overexcite.
and check. Check the content as a regular feedback. Thus, students won't
forget studied topics and functions.
activities which involve physical movement. They are motivating and permit
to remember more easily studied topics.
that many students win in games to keep them committed to the class.
tell students that they have fail or that they are the worst students you
have ever taught to. If you do it, be sure that they will not learn in your
your own material; include puppets, drawings, bingos, pictionaries,
etc. Surprise your students taking an odd object or animal that could raise
curiosity among them.
songs, rhymes and poetry.They are funny, pronunciation is practiced
and a lot of phrases can be learned from them.
attention to speaking, starting with short phrases and rising the level
gradually to more complex structures.
the abuse of abstract concepts. They can be confusing. Use simple
things according to the level of students and which represent clear ideas.
and "thank you" at any moment. Be positive and polite in
your class, a friendly atmosphere between teacher students is the more adequate
for learning to take place.
must always have materials prepared and ready to use.
your lessons. This is a crucial secret of effective teachers. Include plan
B and also C, just in case.
If something is not working, change the activity or game.
always, shy students in activities and games.
real objects in class (realia), including garments, food, etc.
If you can not take realia to class, use colorful pictures or drawings which
represent objects in real life.
you are writing on the whiteboard, keep talking. Many students take advantage
of these moments to do whatever thing instead of the activity.
and analize experiences, materials, suggestions, techniques, strategies,
lesson plans, etc. with collegues.
regular Academy reunions to share experiences and to solve problems
related to teaching languages.
Students with problems
to do with failing students ? Marty Dawley, Spring International Language Center.
does failure bother teachers so much? When the student fail, we feel we have
students to succed: A twelve step program.
failure early and act on it. This includes getting evidence of students
level and abilities within the first week of class through testing, in class
writing, and interviews.
the student privately with facts (test papers, lack of study and homework,
class requirements including time, etc.) Many students are anxious to deny
there is a problem. "Don't worry teacher. No problem." Be specific
and blunt. "There is not a single correct sentence in this composition."
Also use your judgement. Some students need this more than others.
the student to verbalize her own problem and identify causes and solutions.
Don't allow the student to minimize the problem. Analyze the problem with
the student. This self recognition is the key to any self program. The student
must recognize the problem and decide she wants to fix it.
Be honest and direct in your responses. Offer respect and encouragement.
Listen and look with great attention. Look at the distance a student holds
the book from him as he reads. Listen to what she says about her study time.
Let the time you spend with this student be exploratory. You may have only
seen symptoms of the problem, but not have any idea of its source.
the student create a plan of action with realistic goals. Help her to move
back to a reasonable starting place. Help her develop steps to reaching
her goal. Don't guarantee her a passing grade. Offer her a chance to make
sure the student adopts the plan as his own set of goals and responsabilities.
Let him write or articulate his plans. Check carefully to see if you are
on the same track. Make sure he includes his own ideas.
up on the plan daily or each time you meet. Let the student know you are
interested in her succes. Congratulate her on daily successes in front of
others if it's appropiate. "Your grammar was much better in this chapter."
"This is your highest grade this term." Your reinforcements can
become less regular as the student improves.
the student his goals. Be positive, but firm. Don't reinforce the student's
bad reputation. Don't make negative comments in front of the class, but
do ask him to come and see you. He may need help. Watch for backsliding.
Old habits are hard to break.
a resource. Offer or locate additional instruction and materials at an appropiate
level. Keep files to help you come up with materials easily. Peer tutors
are another valuable tool. Know what other classes and community resources
are available to help a student in need.
your approach to help keep students interested and to accommodate varied
learning styles, and intelligences. Give your failing students a chance
to shine. Don't lower your standards to accommodate a student who is "working
hard." Your whole class will benefit from this step.
growth even when it does not include a passing test or class. Make sure
you spend time with that student before she receives an F on a major paper,
a test, or the class. A minute before class begins is all it takes to say
"Those passive verbs are still really hard for you, but I could see
you worked on them. Let's try again." Once again, let the student verbalize
his own growth. "Do you read better now than you did nine weeks ago?"
"Yes, I do. I know more words, and I read better." Don't give
a student a passing grade for trying hard. It only takes her to a harder,
more impossible level.
a professional look. If you have followed this plan, you have done your
best. The student is responsible for his successes and failures.
Raising the academic level
high expectations questions. Don't lower the level in class. Some professors
say "Plan for advanced students".
you ask a question, wait until the student answers correctly. Stop asking
if that student is thinking or has not completed the answer. This is related
to high level learning. It includes full sentences when answering.
homework contributes a lot to high level learning. If you check homework
carefully, students will do them better.
of the main challenges is to create intrinsic motivation in our students.
It can be done through elaboration of materials. If materials catch the
attention, your students will be more committed to your class.
reports of students' performance to parents periodically. Also include discipline
facts or congratulations. Elaborate a format which has to be signed by parents
and turned in back.
also can reward the whole group for being disciplined and hardworking. Maybe
some rows or small groups of students are working harder, they should have
some kind of reward.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Design: Francisco Amador Garcia
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