Jan 15, 2018
Classroom Management 411 Views
~~Facing a class of under fives can be a very frightening experience. What do you do when they start crying, crawling under the table, throwing things, won’t participate etc?
It is important to remember that learning English can be a frightening and destabilising experience for a young child and it is vital that rapport and trust is established quickly. Greet them when they come into the classroom, and use their names as much as possible. Sometimes having children’s music/songs playing quietly in the background can reduce the stress felt by the learners.
Sometimes small toys/teddies etc can be used to distract nervous or tearful learners who can be asked to “look after” the toy for the lesson. It is important to set this up clearly or the child may become distressed at the end of the lesson when they have to return it. For this to work well the same group of toys should be available every week and there should be at least one available per learner. These toys can also be used to ...
Feb 13, 2018
Teacher Training 386 Views
~~What are Concept Check Questions (CCQs)?
What are Concept Check Questions? A question to lead learners to understand or demonstrate their understanding of the meaning of a new item (vocab or structure).
Why Use Them? They involve learners in the process of clarifying meaning and the teacher can check if learners have understood.
When are They Used? During the clarification stage, before highlighting the form and drilling so learners are clear on the meaning of what they are saying. As well as throughout the lesson.
How are They Made? Simplify language analysis so learners can understand the language used, then make the main points into questions. For example:
Target Language Main Points Questions
I’ve been to China. I went in the past. We don’t know when. I’m not there now.
Did I go in the past?
Do we know when I went?
Am I in China now?
CCQs are not the only way to check learners’ understanding of the language or concepts presented.
Ways of Checking Meaning
Jan 15, 2018
Career Development 370 Views
Even though I’m not a millionaire, YET, I have learned to interact with the most successful teachers I know here in H.K, and just from the conversations we had and the stories they shared, I managed to draw out a few lessons and here’s some of the most important stuff I learned from them, it could also be useful to you in your teaching journey.
Focus on the Demand
In your teaching career here in Hong Kong, you have to focus on what the students and parents actually need. Recently, I have seen a lot courses being developed that do not address any specific need but are just there as a collection of topics ruthlessly forced into unsuspecting students’ heads, I only realized the importance of studying trends in demand when I took a more in depth study of these millionaire teachers and it became clear that these guys always teach their student to pass their exams. Everybody needs to pass an exam right? So when you work, or when you train for being an HK tutor, it is important to do as ...
~~Teaching very young learners (under 5s) can be particularly daunting for many teachers. For most it is the first time they have had to cope with children this young, and many are concerned or worried about how to approach the class.
Teaching very young learners can be a lot of fun and very rewarding however, there is no doubt that it presents a set of unique challenges. Young learners are not interested in English per se they are more focussed on having fun, playing games and being entertained.
Initially, most young learners are very shy of their new teacher; especially as to them the new teacher is a strange and scary looking foreigner. It is not uncommon for them to become fixed to their mothers and barely acknowledge your presence. One thing that works in your favour is that small children are innately curious and by making funny faces, silly noises etc will make them smile or laugh winning half the battle. Perseverance however, will pay off and before long the little ones will ...
~~Talking about the future in English can be difficult as technically there are no future tenses in English. The future is not fixed – it does not exist yet. So in English we use a number of forms and structures to express the future. It is usually the degree of certainty about the future decides our choice of structure or tense. But the distinction between choices is not always clear.
Native speakers of English vary their future forms depending on:
* variety, to avoid repetition
* formality, use “will” instead of “going to”
* type of text, “will” is generally used to make weather predictions
Ways of talking about the future in English.
For unplanned future events/instant decisions – I’ll get it!
For expectations/predictions that are not based on present or past evidence – England will win the match
To make promises – I’ll see you tomorrow
* Going to (be + going to + verb)
For predictions based on past or present evidence - She’s going to have a baby
For pre-meditated ...
by Ronald Fitzgerald, D.Ed.