My teaching approach
ASSIGNMENT ON OWN APPROACH TO TEACHING
TEFL Student Name: Claudio López Tejerina.
Speaking fluently by watching movies: communicative and vocabulary activities.
Firstly, the course would be structured in three clasess per week, the first three weeks classes would be based in communicative activities about movies' contents to practice speaking skills and pronunciation, the movies general topic would change every four weeks. By this way students could focus on the movies topics vocabulary to be changed each month and could understand more by interpreting the language in a full visual context, enabling them to listen to language exchanges and see such visual supports as facial expressions and gestures simultaneously, being exposed to various accents. The speaking class would start with quick questions related with the movies’ content, then, I would present communicative activities about real situations, together with a short reading about the plot summary of the movie, which would be read by one of the students to practice pronunciation, as well as a short clip which can be related with the topic in general or the topic in the movie, they would also have the transcription to read aloud to practice pronunciation; everything with associated discussion questions or debates. These movies would be selected according to relevant webs with critics and reviews in order to find interesting ones for the students; by the time they would watch 7 movies every month; Consequently, students would be asked to watch a movie as a homework, they could at least watch the movie once in English with subtitles in English, because a whole film or sequence could be used to practice listening and reading, and as a model for speaking and writing; but if they wanted to practice listening a little bit more they could even watch it without subtitles or if they wanted to clarify the meaning they could also watch it in their mother tongue version. In addition, they could fill a sheet with the words they are not familiar with, they could look at the dictionary for the words definition, they would learn this vocabulary within the context of the movie in relation with real life situations; they would not learn words in isolation; by this way they wouldn’t only learn what each word means, they would also know how it is used; for example: if they learned the word “detective” it can be understood as a title in front of a person (e.g. Detective “Becket”) or maybe like the noun referring to the job ( e.g. he’s a detective), and maybe they would even hear things like opinions about the word (e.g. you lousy detective); furthermore, I would ask them to keep a notebook with the words. The last week, would be based in the difficult vocabulary related with the movies, starting with quick questions about the movies’ content, then, I would present images to be matched with the target language, as I would ask question about real life situations first with the words and the images and finally with just the words. When coming to class, students could give me the task sheet with the difficult words as a proof that they did their homework, and I would use these sheets to prepare the vocabulary activities for the last week. This teaching program could be only applied for students with intermediate to advanced level, because this kind of students are more likely to reach speaking fluency, because they have already acquired a certain level of oral production, by watching movies they would be exposed to the natural language close to the native speaker utterances: that is why, students from lower level or kids would need more practice to increase their vocabulary or improve their knowledge in grammar structures.
Secondly, as a teacher, I would guide the students in order to favour the class dynamics for them to communicate effectively in English which would be the target language of the class avoiding the students utterance in the class which would be corrected like grammatical errors in English. Moreover, I would facilitate the students interventions and interactions. I would correct students grammar or pronunciation errors during the class, for students to feel they would speak English better by following my correction. By the time, I would be specially picky with the ones with higher level, rather than other students which had more evident difficulties; however, during debates I would not correct them, because they had limited time to organize and present their interventions. Therefore, with this activities I would emphasize speaking skills as well as listening, because listening is key to all effective communication, without the ability to listen effectively messages are easily misunderstood and vocabulary; together with some pronunciation practice when reading the short extract of the plot summary as well as the transcription from the video clip.
Thirdly, students could feel motivated to speak during the class discussions because they would feel confident as they got impressions of the topic while watching the movie; however if the students did not watch the movie as a homework, they could follow the class without problems because all the discussions and debates would be based on real life situations. Consequently, students would be communicators because they would be actively engaged in negotiation meaning trying to make themselves understood, being generally active, doing the most of speaking in the classroom. Moreover, they would be self-managers having the initiative an take responsibility for learning specially when they organize themselves, specially for the debate activity because they would work collaboratively in the classroom being supported by my facilitation and guidance. Furthermore, the student main would deal with the capacity of speaking fluently: that is why, they would be given varied communicative tasks during class in order to meet their objectives. For instance, they could need to be able to communicate with international customers or being willing to enjoy international communication when travelling abroad.
Finally, every student at any time could follow and enjoy the class; they wouldn’t need strictly to do their homework; however, they would have the opportunity to watch interesting movies while learning English, they would discuss and debate interesting topics in class, as being corrected according to grammar and pronunciation, while focus on vocabulary activities too, just related with the words they could not easily understand while watching the movies. Overall students could be easily assessed as I would keep a record of the homework task sheets given, as I could observe how the students perform during class, because if they watched the movies in advance they would have good practice on listening and vocabulary and they would be more confident to do the activities.
An example of a how a class would be structured
General Speaking activity (First three weeks)
Movie topic series: moral values
Topic activity: Braveheart movie, freedom
They related with the movie
- Are you in your hometown?
- Would you like to live abroad?
- Does she like history?
- Is it good to be free?
- Do men wear skirts?
- Do they like Celtic music?
- Will you fight for your freedom?
- Has she learned how to read?
- Is Scotland at the north of England?
- Can you play the bagpipe?
- Have you been in Great Britain?
- Do you like your hometown?
- Does William have long hair?
- Is your hometown a nice place to live?
- Is it important to learn how to read?
- Have you ever been in Scotland?
- Are you going to travel abroad?
- Do you speak Latin?
Do you like your country?
What do you like about your country?
Do you think do you live with freedom in your country? Why?
Activiy 1: Discussion
What makes a person lead for his country’s freedom?
What kind of personal qualities does he or she need?
Besides expulsing invaders for your land, there are more reasons to fight for freedom?
Activity 2: Debate
Start a war causing many deaths, is it a good or bad idea?
The class could be divided into two groups to each of the two resolutions.
First, the affirmative group receives two minutes to present their case to the audience, then the negative group present their case, for two minutes each one.
Finally, during the rebuttal turn, it is the negative group which starts the debate.
Plot summary reading.
William Wallace is a Scottish rebel who leads an uprising against the cruel English ruler Edward the Longshanks, who wishes to inherit the crown of Scotland for himself. When he was a young boy, William Wallace's father and brother, along with many others, lost their lives trying to free Scotland. Once he loses another of his loved ones, William Wallace begins his long quest to make Scotland free once and for all, along with the assistance of Robert the Bruce.
Discussing questions: What do you think about the attitude of the main character, William Wallace? Is him right or wrong?
A clip about the topic:
This is the speech about freedom from the main character of the movie.
Many years from now, would you be willing to trade all the days from this day to that for one chance, just one chance to come back here and tell our enemies that they may take our lives, but they'll never take our freedom!!!
Discussion: what they think about this speech?
What is freedom for you?
Can you tell me some example of freedom in your country?
Another example where is there not freedom in your country?
Vocabulary activity ( based on the sheet given by the students)
Quick questions ( from the movies viewed already)
General questions about the topic related with their real life experience
Photos and words
Ask them to match the word with the picture, then, ask them questions about their real life in relation with the meaning of words.
Then, show them the words without images and ask them more questions related with their real life situations.
According to the most difficult words for the students to learn, I will ask questions associated with situations of real life