eslHQ Home
User Name Password
Lost Password? | Join eslHQ.com, it's FREE!
View today's posts
Search Extras Help   

Reply
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1 (permalink)  
Unread Mar 19th, 2010, 06:42 am
eslHQ Member
 
Join Date: Mar 13th, 2010
Posts: 3
Lorna G is on a distinguished road
Default Difficult Class!

I teach a group of three twenty-something’s and find them to be very unresponsive. It's difficult to get them to talk about anything though they often talk to one another in their native tongue.

Can you give me any tips on how to get them talking or suggest any games? They're at a beginner level so I know I should focus on grammar and vocab but I'm quite new to this so I'm not sure where to start.

Any help would be gratefully appreciated!
Reply With Quote
  #2 (permalink)  
Unread Mar 19th, 2010, 05:39 pm
eslHQ Zealot
 
Join Date: Aug 24th, 2006
Posts: 203
bread_baker is on a distinguished road
Default Re: Difficult Class!

I teach Beginning High, which I have taught for over 3 years. Before I make suggestions, I have some questions. How much English do they know? Do they know any sets of vocabulary words like items of clothing, parts of the body, etc.? Can they carry on conversations in English at all? What grammar structures do they know? What grammar structures are you required to teach them? Have you tried any hands-on or visual activities, and if so, which ones? Have you tried written dialogs which they learn to say? Dialogs are an important part of my class.
Reply With Quote
  #3 (permalink)  
Unread Mar 21st, 2010, 10:16 am
eslHQ Member
 
Join Date: Mar 13th, 2010
Posts: 3
Lorna G is on a distinguished road
Default Re: Difficult Class!

Hello and thank you for your interest.

They have basic English and I think they studied when they were at school. I would say they are below pre-intermediate level but better than basic English if that makes sense. I've only taught them twice and haven't been given much background. I've covered adverbs of frequency and I know their other teacher covered some basic grammar but I don't know what! They can carry on conversations but with very broken English with incorrect tenses. I'm required to teach them business English that relates to their work but I try to be general and would like our lessons to be more creative, interactive and fun! They just don't seem to enjoy the lessons and they talk in their native tongue to each other which can be a bit rude. We are quite close in age so I don't know if that has any factor. I have tried question cards with them and asked for their opinions on for and against subjects. These have probably been the two exercises where they have become the most animated. I haven't tried dialogue exercises. I just don't know where to start really and find lessons with them a bit draining and difficult. Any help would be very much appreciated!
Reply With Quote
  #4 (permalink)  
Unread Mar 21st, 2010, 03:33 pm
eslHQ Zealot
 
Join Date: Aug 24th, 2006
Posts: 203
bread_baker is on a distinguished road
Default Re: Difficult Class!

It sounds like you have students who are at the low end of Beginnning High. I get ones like these 4 times a year! Your students are going to need a lot of grammar, because they are very low in their grammar skills. You are going to need to teach them the simple present and present continuous, before teaching any other grammar. Question cards are great, but I only use them after I've taught the positive, negative and question forms of the target grammar. Otherwise they can't answer with correct grammar. Some students don't like grammar, but it is necessary. To get the students to "buy in" more, tell them that what you're teaching them today is important, and WHY. This works well for me. I'll post again after I think more about your needs. Have you looked into the black Oxford Picture Dictionary? It is very useful in a Beginning High class, and I am sure you will find relevant vocabulary in it.
Reply With Quote
  #5 (permalink)  
Unread Mar 21st, 2010, 03:35 pm
eslHQ Zealot
 
Join Date: Aug 24th, 2006
Posts: 203
bread_baker is on a distinguished road
Default Re: Difficult Class!

You wrote that you need to teach English that relates to their work. What occupations do they have?
Reply With Quote
  #6 (permalink)  
Unread Mar 21st, 2010, 04:13 pm
eslHQ Zealot
 
Join Date: Aug 24th, 2006
Posts: 203
bread_baker is on a distinguished road
Default Re: Difficult Class!

They need to learn the vocabulary for their jobs. If they are carpenters, they need to know all the names of the tools, as well as some relevant verbs. This has to be priority. You can use this vocabulary with the grammar you teach them.
Simple present:
Is this your toolbox? Yes, it is. OR No, it isn't.
Present continuous:
What is Peter doing?
He's installing some cabinets.

Don't teach them too many new words each day. How many words, you ask? Some teachers are very conservative. Definitely not more than 10 each day, and some teachers teach fewer. You will need to give them practice of the same words over a number of days. It takes a lot of practice over time for the words to "stick." You may also want to give them spelling tests. Then they have to learn how to spell the words. Depending on their jobs, they may also need to learn how to report accidents, defective or broken equipment, etc. This means they need to learn how to fill out forms and write legibly.

Last edited by bread_baker : Mar 21st, 2010 at 04:16 pm. Reason: grammar and a note
Reply With Quote
  #7 (permalink)  
Unread Mar 21st, 2010, 04:22 pm
eslHQ Zealot
 
Join Date: Aug 24th, 2006
Posts: 203
bread_baker is on a distinguished road
Default Re: Difficult Class!

You can write dialogs that are meant to sound like they happened on the job. At first, keep the dialogs rather short. I don't use dialogs until after my students have learned the target grammar. I also limit the number of new words that occur in the dialogs. I prefer to use dialogs to give vocabulary practice, not first instruction in vocabulary.
Reply With Quote
  #8 (permalink)  
Unread Apr 5th, 2010, 06:18 am
eslHQ Member
 
Join Date: Feb 24th, 2010
Posts: 3
LSophie is on a distinguished road
Default Re: Difficult Class!

Let them develop their listening. You can use the media for listening if you have a computer or TV & player. Some techniques that you can use is the silent viewing -- let them view video material without sound to let the students consider what is going on and guess what the speakers are doing and saying. Another is the soundtrack only -- the students will listen to the soundtrack without the picture. They can speculate what speakers look like, the setting and the location. You can also let the students watch the beginning of a sequence then let them predict what will happen next. Or they will watch the ending and consider what happened earlier.

Minimal pairs listening - give two words that have slight difference in sound such as lap - rap, sell - sail. You can have it in a form of a game such as if the student hear the word "lap" they put up one finger. But if they hear the word "rap" they put up two fingers. You can vary the speed of saying the words and when the students are familiarized with the rule of the game, let them take turns being the moderator.

In addition to the dialogues, give conversations using short-answer questions such as the Yes-No, Either-Or, and Identity Questions.
Reply With Quote
  #9 (permalink)  
Unread Apr 14th, 2010, 07:11 am
clever
 
Join Date: Nov 18th, 2009
Posts: 55
clevermae is on a distinguished road
Default Re: Difficult Class!

Basing from their age (20-something), then I assume studying English is a choice they made themselves. These people are not kids anymore, so if they are not interested, why enroll in the first place? I'd treat them as adults and ask them how interested they are to learn. And if they are, then they have to exert more effort at responding to lessons and activities. You can't do anything to help them if they are not keen about learning.
Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

Similar Threads Replies
Over 50 ESL positions for June, July, August start. Reputable schools all over Korea 0
Up for a year of Korean adventure? Be an ESL teacher now! 0
Come & teach at reputable schools in S.Korea’s various premier cities. 0
Reputable schools with friendly staff, great salary and beautiful locations. 0
Teach and Live in South Korea. Recommended private institute and public schools! 0

Find the Best TEFL, TESL, TESOL & CELTA Certification Courses - User Submitted Ratings & Reviews for Online, Distance & Abroad TEFL Courses. Over 3,500 reviews of 100+ TEFL schools!

Teach English in Thailand - Onsite and Combined TEFL certification courses in Phuket, Thailand.


Free ESL Flashcards


Similar Threads Replies
Over 50 ESL positions for June, July, August start. Reputable schools all over Korea 0
Up for a year of Korean adventure? Be an ESL teacher now! 0
Come & teach at reputable schools in S.Korea’s various premier cities. 0
Reputable schools with friendly staff, great salary and beautiful locations. 0
Teach and Live in South Korea. Recommended private institute and public schools! 0


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:23 pm.

All materials from this website are for classroom-use only. Digital redistribution of materials, in part or in whole, is strictly forbidden!

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2