Sunday 16 June 2019

Bloopers For The Week Ending 14/06/19

Hello! Starting with this post, every week I'll share the things that didn't go well in my class for that week, partly for reflection purposes and mostly for other teachers to learn from my experiences.
This week went well generally except for card games! My students love card games. I love them too but I had issues with modelling the game and giving proper instructions.

For year 2, I taught the grammar point "What do you think of.../ I think (that) ..." and I decided to use a card game activity. The idea was to have cards with different pictures and words like natto, tennis, TV, books and so on and have students ask and answer questions using the target language. So, the game is played by four to five players, the cards are shuffled and everyone gets 5 cards each. The first player picks a card, for example, tennis and asks " What do you think of tennis?" and students with tennis card drop their card and say "I think (that) it is..." any player without the said card picks one from the extra cards in the middle. And next player asks and so on and so forth until one player exhausts all their cards and wins. Sounds easy right? But this game flopped right from the demonstration stage for so many reasons. 

Firstly, I struggled to find the simplest English words to show how this game works, even though I demonstrated with a few students still it didn't go smoothly. I had to go from table to table re-explaining the game to individual groups and that was really exhausting to do and of course, that amounted to lots of teacher talk. In order to avoid this next time, it's best to script my words before class. I mean write out exactly what I need to say. Though I learned this trick during my CELTA course, I still didn't put it into practice, but lesson learned! 

Also, in retrospect, I think I should have done the game differently. Though the aim of the game was for everyone to practice the target language not everyone got equal chances to say the sentence. So, if you didn't have the card asked for by the player then you just picked a card from the extra pile of cards without saying anything and this happened a lot of times. Next time, I would have the first player ask the students in their group the question; for example, "What do you think of tennis?" followed by the other students' answers "I think it is..." even if they didn't have the card then they go on to drop the card or pick an extra card. That way everyone will get more opportunities to use the language.

Hopefully, I'll do better next week. Please leave ideas and suggestions on how to make this game more effective.

Thanks for stopping by, see you next post!

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