Effortless English Archives

Automatic English For The People

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Open Classes

by AJ

Starting next semester, I will institute an open class policy in all my courses. What this means:

1. Any student in any of my classes may attend EVERY other class I teach. Ill distribute my schedule to all classes. Students who want extra English practice can come to any class they want (in addition to the one they are registered for).

2. Bring your friends: Ill encourage students to bring friends to class... especially foreign friends or friends wanting a bit of extra English practice.

3. Ill actively recruit foreign volunteers to join my classes... providing them, and my students, with social and language opportunities...

Will any of my students take advantage of these opportunities. I dont know.. maybe not. But its a nice gesture nonetheless.

This idea was inspired, in fact, by a stowaway in one of my freshman English classes. One day I was taking roll and counting students and realized that there was an extra student somewhere. The stowaway sheepishly raised her hand..... she was a friend of one of the registered students who wanted to join for some extra English practice (and to socialize with her friends).

I guess she was afraid Id kick her out... but I chose to welcome her enthusiastically. She's still coming to class. That got me to thinking... what if I could tap foreigners, friends, and expats to liven up my classes, create a buzz, and design a more international experience for my students?

Next semester will be my first prototype attempt at just such a strategy.