PDA

View Full Version : HS Advice



Libellule
September 1st, 2014, 10:29
I've started doing school visits outside of my base school, and one of the high schools has a situation that I’m not sure how to handle. There is one class per grade, about 10 students give or take in each class, and most of them don't want to be there. I'll be visiting this school once or twice a month, and the JTE asked me if I could plan the lessons, and she would assist me. I'm happy to finally have some autonomy, but I'm really not sure where to start. To give an idea of their English abilities, the students don’t understand English unless it's katakana-ized. What can I do to actually teach them something? Does anyone have any experience in a similar situation?

uthinkimlost?
September 1st, 2014, 10:32
Textbook?

Edit: as in, do they use a textbook?

Libellule
September 1st, 2014, 10:35
Edit - Yes

uthinkimlost?
September 1st, 2014, 10:41
Just do activities to reinforce what they learn from the textbooks, to start. Vocabulary and grammar games. Move up to other stuff once you get a handle on what they can do. Once they're comfortable with you you'll be surprised at how communicative they'll become.

Gizmotech
September 1st, 2014, 12:01
Also, regardless if they want to be there or not, do not treat them like they don't know shit, or they are children. They will likely be much more responsive if you treat them as adults and not dumb shit down for them right from the go.

Jiggit
September 1st, 2014, 12:03
Even though they don't know shit and are children.

Gizmotech
September 1st, 2014, 12:05
Even though they don't know shit and are children.

Which is the point. Appeal to their vanity and ego, while slowly showing them that they still have a long ways to go and that you're willing to help. It makes a huge difference when interacting with young adults, as they usually see authority figures (or mandatory things) as beneath them due to their upcoming genuine adulthood.

(I spent enough time with delinquents to figure this out the hardway)

Jiggit
September 1st, 2014, 12:07
Oh I know that. I'm just saying, most Japanese people below the age of 30 are children who know nothing.

I know a fair few retired people like that.

AVN
September 3rd, 2014, 12:09
Communicative and productive activities are the best.
When I taught at a high school like that my JTEs taught them from the textbook, when I wasn't there, and I presented productive activities.
I had a curriculum I made. It started with self intros with posters and not the usual stuff. They would have a game, a worksheet, then make a poster, and finally present the poster in small groups.
Then they would introduce someone else (famous, not famous, human, not human), a restaurant theme (some realia, video, dialogue practice, make their own menu, and present a skit with all the props), a comic theme (some realia, add their own dialogue, then in small groups design their own comic, and I would make a book out of it), and if I had time and approval a commercial theme (some realia, some key words in ads, then have them create a product, make an ad poster, and if possible film the commercial).
These all took 2-3 lessons each. I also mixed in some Holiday activities and a few small conversational activities, and reading activities (that Gizmo suggested ;) ). This filled a whole year and I really saw the kids come out of their shell. All of their student made materials decorated the room (posters, menus, comics, ads, etc) and they had a real sense of pride. They really had fun with them, using dictionaries, asking really interesting questions, and remembering many of the new words and phrases used in these projects throughout the year.

jacklostinred
September 3rd, 2014, 22:49
Communicative and productive activities are the best.
When I taught at a high school like that my JTEs taught them from the textbook, when I wasn't there, and I presented productive activities.
I had a curriculum I made. It started with self intros with posters and not the usual stuff. They would have a game, a worksheet, then make a poster, and finally present the poster in small groups.
Then they would introduce someone else (famous, not famous, human, not human), a restaurant theme (some realia, video, dialogue practice, make their own menu, and present a skit with all the props), a comic theme (some realia, add their own dialogue, then in small groups design their own comic, and I would make a book out of it), and if I had time and approval a commercial theme (some realia, some key words in ads, then have them create a product, make an ad poster, and if possible film the commercial).
These all took 2-3 lessons each. I also mixed in some Holiday activities and a few small conversational activities, and reading activities (that Gizmo suggested ;) ). This filled a whole year and I really saw the kids come out of their shell. All of their student made materials decorated the room (posters, menus, comics, ads, etc) and they had a real sense of pride. They really had fun with them, using dictionaries, asking really interesting questions, and remembering many of the new words and phrases used in these projects throughout the year.

This is really good. I have my 3rd year kids make a commercial along with all the planning to go with it. The kids enjoy it and they get to find new ways to use English.

Momore
September 4th, 2014, 12:30
I'm in the same boat, so I appreciate the advice in this thread. I visit the high school here once a month, and so far I've just been asked to come up with a game or activity. That's fine and all, and the students get into the quiz games and stuff and seem to enjoy it, but I would like to start doing more interesting and helpful lessons. I get along with the teachers there, so if I ask about it I'm pretty sure they'll let me plan something instead of just doing a game. I was also asked (in an email) by one of the teachers about my opinion on English education here, and how I could be used in the classroom (though nothing came of that after I responded).

It's a little tough to think of activities that can be finished in a single class, since trying to do a stretched out lesson when I'm only there once a month seems like it won't work well. Some of the students are motivated, but most are pretty low level. So far, my lessons haven't really been connected to what they've been doing with their textbooks, and I think the teachers there aren't interested in my lessons just being extensions of their own (and I suspect the students wouldn't be as interested in that either). They don't seem to want me to give the students a lot work to do outside the classroom, too. That being the case, I've been preparing some lessons that are part-grammar and part-cultural, but I haven't discussed any of these with the JTE yet.

Has anyone else been in a similar situation?