1 Teaching YLs Intro Session

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Introduction to teaching English young learners

Transcript of 1 Teaching YLs Intro Session

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    INTERNATIONAL HOUSE Young Learners Training Course

    Teaching Young Learners Lise Bell/Paula de Nagy

    International House Lisbon

    March 2001

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    List of contents: Title Page - Page 1

    List of contents - Page 2 Main aims of the session / Session Outline - Page 3 Tutors Notes: Stage 1: Warmer - Page 4 Stage 2: Discussion Activity - Page 5 Stage 3: Poster Activity - Page 6 Stage 4: Looking at Teachers Books - Page 7 Homework - Page 7

    Bibliography - Page 8

    Materials Pages Pages 9 - 22

    Answer Keys Pages 23 - 26

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    Main aims of this session: The session draws on participants awareness of how Adults learn and encourages them to identify the key differences between teaching Adults and Young Learners. By the end of the session, they should be familiar with some of the implications of the above for the teaching of YLs. It is a hands-on session consisting mainly of group and pair work and we hope it will lead to quite a lot of reflection Notes to tutor: If running the session yourself: Many of the stages of the session are designed to encourage trainees to interact and share ideas. The initial warmer activity can be replaced with any activity that is clearly designed for children rather than adults. The session is based on materials from Teaching Children English and Teaching English in the Primary Classroom (See Bibliography for full references). You will find all you need in this pack except for the reading (Homework), which comes from: Teaching English in the Primary Classroom (Pgs 3-8) The whole session should take not much longer than 1h15 mins, with the reading and homework taking up a further 15 minutes. If you are not running the session for a group but guiding teachers through self-study, you will find suggested procedures at the end of each stage. Session Outline: Stage Activity Stage 1: Warmer Spider mobile Stage 2: Discussion Activity

    Discussion using prompt cards Main differences between YLs and Adults and Implications/Comments

    Stage 3: Poster Activity Poster presentation YLs like YLs are YL can

    Stage 4: Analysis of Teachers Books

    Ts evaluate how Teachers Books are adapted for Yls

    Homework: Reading and note-taking

    Reading Halliwell Notes: differences between adults and YL

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    Tutor Notes: Stage 1 Aim: Warmer and beginning of reflection Handouts: Materials Page 1 (spider mobile) or a similar activity Materials: card; crayons; string; scissors, straws; and glue Time: +/- 15 minutes Procedure:

    1) Explain that they are about to do a fairly typical activity common in YL classes

    2) Set up small groups to make mobile as per Materials Page 1 3) Possible tasks to set for reflection either while they are making

    mobiles or to discuss after activity (as in Vale and Feunteun: Focus on instructional language).

    For teachers who have never taught YLs before What did you find easy, difficult? Could you do this activity with your Adult students? Why? Why not? What makes this activity particularly suitable for YLs?

    For more experienced YL teachers In addition to the above, they could also consider some additional questions such as: What language did you use during activity that could be taught to YLs? What age groups could manage this kind of activity? Would you make changes for these different groups?

    If trainees are going to work through the session on their own, they could do the activity with a colleague for added input or alternatively they could simply read Materials Page 1 and the above questions and write their answers down. A suggestion is that they write all their answers throughout the course in a book which then becomes their reflection journal. Whichever way they do it, it would be wise for them to come to you and briefly discuss their answers before moving on.

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    Tutor Notes: Stage 2 Aim: Discussion stage to encourage participants to draw some

    conclusions from Stage 1 and other Adult/YL experience they have had

    Handouts: Materials Page 2 (grid) Materials: Cards with prompts (Starting on Materials Pages 4) Time: +/- 30 minutes Procedure:

    1) Divide prompt cards around the group. Encourage participants to discuss each card in terms of three categories in grid (Materials Page 2), i.e. Aspect, Main differences between YLs and Adults and Implications/Comments

    2) Feedback as a whole group (See Answer Key 1 for ideas for completing grid)

    If trainees are going to work through the session on their own, they could simply be given the handout to brainstorm and then sit down with the tutor for a short session where they discuss the answers (See Answer Key 1 for some suggested answers)

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    Tutor Notes: Stage 3 Aim: To encourage trainees to apply the above principles to

    the YL language classroom and consider concrete implications of same

    Handouts: Materials Page 11 and 12 Materials: A3 paper and coloured pens, blutack Time: +/- 15 mins Procedure:

    1) Trainees work in groups. Each group has an A3 sheet with one of the following prompts:

    Young Learners need... Young Learners are... Young Learners like... Young Learners can...

    See Materials Page 11 for an example 2) Groups spend +- 5/10 minutes brainstorming each category before

    displaying them around the room, reading each others and adding anything they feel their colleagues have left out

    3) See Materials Page 12 for an alternative way of setting up the brainstorm. This could be given to trainees as an alternative to doing the above activity if you are short of time.

    (This activity was originally seen in a session run by Janet Sinclair from IH Braga) If trainees are going to work through the session on their own, they can do the activity on their own first before comparing it with Materials Page 12.

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    Tutor Notes: Stage 4 Aim: Initial sensitisation to strengths and weaknesses of

    coursebooks and the Teachers Book and encouraging participants to start thinking about the implications for planning of the principles discussed above

    Handouts: None Materials: Teachers Book for coursebooks that trainees are likely

    to be using or are familiar with. It is probably unrealistic to look at more than 2 coursebooks during such a short slot

    Time: +/- 15 mins Procedure:

    1) Trainees sit in pairs each pair has one of the Teachers Books for the coursebooks they will be using in Teaching Practice The task to set them is as follows: Which of the principles in Stage 2 are catered for in the

    Teachers Notes? What else will you need to consider from the principles

    weve discussed so far when working through the coursebook?

    Early finishers could be encouraged to start thinking about how they might apply the principles.

    Tutor Notes: Homework Aim: Encourage trainees to reflect further on what was

    covered in the session and to get them thinking about why they are doing the training course

    Handouts: Materials Page 13 Materials: Reading from Susan Halliwell, Teaching English in the

    Primary Classrooom, pgs 3-8 (Longman) Not included Time: +/- 15 mins Procedure: Trainees are given handout with blank grid and reading to do before the next day of input. We suggest they first do the reading and then complete the grid. See Answer Key 2 for suggested answers to the grid. Feedback to this activity could be done at the start of the next day of input.

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    Bibliography Halliwell, Susan. 1992. Teaching English in the Primary Classroom. Harlow: Longman Vale, David and Feunteun, Anne. 1995. Teaching Children English: A training course for teachers of English to children. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press

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    Materials Page 1 Page 139 of Teaching Children English by David Vale and Anne Feunteun (Cambridge University Press).

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    Materials Page 2




    Requirements of Learning Environment

    Ability to Decipher Meaning

    Cognitive Ability

    Energy Levels/Moods

    Social Skills

    Concentration / Attention



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    Materials Page 3 Motor Skills Development

    Importance of Creativity

    and Imagination

    Reading and Writing

    Direct vs. Indirect Learning



    Learning Styles and



    Attitude to Error

    Attitude to Accuracy /


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    Materials Page 4

    concentration/ attention span

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    Motor skills development

    cognitive ability

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    Energy levels/ moods

    Social skills


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    requirements of learning


    ability to decipher meaning


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    Attitude to error

    attitude to accuracy/fluency


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    learning styles and expectations

    importance of creativity and imagination

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    reading and writing

    direct v indirect learning

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    Materials Page 11

    Young Learners Need...

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    are... need... like... can...

    -tactile and energetic -curious

    -support and enco