Effortless English Archives

Automatic English For The People

Monday, June 06, 2005

Gearing Up

by AJ

Back into the classroom tomorrow. I have now fleshed out a basic outline for all of my courses. While the content will vary according the class, Ive decided to use the same structure for all of them:

Each class meets for an hour and a half, two times a week (for a total of three hours per week).

I will divide class time in three 30 minute blocks. The first 30 minutes I will use TPR Storytelling to teach target vocabulary from the text. The second 30 minutes I will focus on reading-- both interactive reading of articles and also free reading of articles/graded books/magazines (student's choice). The final 30 minutes of each class I will use the movie technique.

I have structured my classes to deliver as much comprehensible input as possible for my students. Their text will include some grammar and drills... I will assign these as homework to help them prepare for the midterm and final.

Finally, Ive decided not to do the method vs. method study as originally planned.. for the following reasons:

1. I couldnt stand the idea of having to do three hours a week of skill-building lessons. BORING!

2. As number 1 indicates, I hate teaching with a skill-building approach. Therefore, the study would be unfair if it used me as the skill-building teacher.... I dont like the method and would likely do a poor job using it.

So...

Im thinking of another way to get at this. There are a huge number of fundamental English classes... All of the classes have the same text and same "targets". All students in these classes will take the exact same midterm and final... prepared collectively by all teachers who teach this section.

So I will try to get access to ALL of the midterm and final exam scores.... Ill compare my classes' performance with the other classes' performance (mean/median scores). A pre/post test format would probably be better... but this still should yield some decent info.

At the least, I hope to show that my students performed no worse on the exams than those taught with the traditional skill building approach.

....

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