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Seniors - Creating a constructive classroom environment

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Chantal Dredge

on 13 November 2013

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Transcript of Seniors - Creating a constructive classroom environment

Seniors - Creating a constructive classroom environment
Read the following comments. Which can you relate to?
'My students are so unmotivated.'
Learner characteristics - Task 1
Think about your seniors classes, jot down 6-8 learner characteristics.
Write some suggestions for the teaching implications of these characteristics.

Example: Characteristic: prone to peer pressure and non-participation, teaching implication: include more group/ pair work, monitor to ensure participation.
Common teacher concerns
Learner characteristics and teaching implications
Strategies for effective classroom management
Adapting the course book
General tips
'I have some really disruptive students and this really effects the class.'
'My students are bored with the course content.'
'All the students have different abilities, I'm not sure what to do.'
'Some students are really shy and don't want to do group work'
'It is difficult to get my students to use English'
Strategies to encourage speaking English
Set an attainable goals for classes struggling
to speak English in class.
Dealing with disruptive students
Give overly energetic students 'helping' tasks in class - please collect the homework/ assist in arranging desks, handing out worksheet e.c.t
Quite/Shy students
Pair them with more confident students.
Unmotivated students/ non-participation
Vary your lesson and interaction patterns: video/ projects/ computer lab/ group work/ pair work
Mixed abilities
Classroom management

is essential to creating a constructive classroom environment. Consistency is key. Set up expectation in the beginning and stick to them throughout the course. Positive reinforcement and encouragement are important, but have a balanced and fair system that has consequences for behavior that is not acceptable.
Have suitable rewards and consequences for not using English.
Include process language for all communicative tasks. What language do they need to complete the task?
Incorporate CM systems such as 'English Box' or 'thermometer' as a visual representation of the rule.
Remind students why speaking English in class is important - how will it benefit them.

Incorporate fun activities that allow students to express their opinions and interests using English.
Have extra tasks for students who finish early, to avoid them disrupting others. These can be puzzles, readings that hold interest for the student, or asking them to help students who are struggling.
Promote student awareness by asking students to keep a learner diary. Each week ask them to reflect on their behaviour in the diary, and come up with ways to improve their behaviour.
“Every day is a new day” should be your mantra with difficult students. They need to know that they have a clean slate to start each day. Holding grudges will only make the problem worse.
Be generous with reward when they do speak.
Encourage team/group work as opposed to individual work.
Give students time to prepare their responses, ask them to jot down some notes. This will make them feel more confident when they respond.
Find out students interests and personalize the lesson
Give students some friendly competition, let students choose the rewards.
Task 3 - read this article - How can you help your students to become intrinsically motivated? Jot down some ideas.
I don't like the course book, and neither do my students.
Task 2 - watch this video and jot down the tips given
Adapting the coursebook
When approaching a lesson with seniors, ask yourself the following:
•Will the students know anything about the topic?
•If not, how can I introduce the topic?
•Will the students be interested in the topic?
•If not, how can I make it more interesting and bring it to life?
•What support will the students need to tackle the task?

Conduct an interest survey/ needs analysis at the beginning of the course. This way you can understand your students interests and plan lessons accordingly. You can adapt these to suit the level/age
T:\Resources\Supplementary-Resources\Adults\Global English\Needs Analysis
Take grammar sections out of the book and turn them into game, for example: running dictations/ pelmanism/ garbage man. Similarly, expand on discussion questions and turn them into debates/role-plays/ projects or presentations.
General tips for seniors
be prepared
Arrange desks to facilitate communication.
Use different interaction patterns - pair work and group work.
Encourage your TA to be involved
Model desired behavior and dress appropriately.
Be enthusiastic
Vary lesson types
give a lot of positive feedback
let students contribute to CM - what are the rules/ rewards
Extra activities for early finishers
Please bring to the workshop:
Notes for Task 1-3

Think about a seniors class of yours:
What is challenging about the class?

What techniques have you used to overcome these challenges, and how effective were they?
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