Nov 30, 2018
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During my TEFL Teaching Practices in Buenos Aires, I had lots of teaching opportunities, experiences that I am detailing below.
This lesson mostly went well. We worked on the past continuous tense and covered the topic of crime. However, we did not finish my activities and did not make it to the final activity I had planned. Also the power went out. This negatively impacted my lesson plan as it made it more difficult to see and meant my computer went dead when I had wanted to use it for some of the activities I had planned. I think I adjusted well, using my phone to finish the lesson, but the situation was less than ideal. Additionally, the reading activity I planned turned out to be too difficult for Roberto, not in terms of content, but in deductive reasoning abilities (I had asked him to solve a made up simple crime I invented). Something that went very well however, was the oral conversational activity I had planned. For this activity, we went over events in history and recited “what were you doing when….” The activity was well tailored to his interests and I was able to work on his use of the past continuous tense in conversation. Overall I think that the lesson could have been better but I don’t think it went poorly and overall I would say it is a success. Next time I will be more aware of time management, and focus on making sure there is no hidden difficulty in my lesson plans. I can’t control if the power goes out.
This class went quite well. I created a lesson about my hometown in Michigan and I connected it back to learning about new vocabulary and to the idea that learning the language of a place teaches you about the culture and history of a place. The lesson also touched on slang words and idioms. The lesson that I planned was well suited to Carla’s English ability level and she seemed to be interested in the topic. I had been worried about the timing of the lesson, but it worked out well and we covered everything. Something I would do differently is to play more games, more relaxed and fun things with Carla as I gave her a lot of work to do in a very short time frame and while she seemed to like my planned activities, perhaps breaking up the lesson a bit more would have made it less monotonous. I will likely continue to create lessons based around this topic however, as I think it is engaging and allows students to begin to develop interest in learning about a language in its own right (e.g. learning about how language is a reflection of culture may make the language more interesting). I also would probably end the lesson differently because although the idiom game worked, there would probably be a better way of ending the lesson so that it ties more closely together with the topic of the lesson overall. Also until attempting it myself, I did not know how difficult the homework I gave Carla was going to be. If working with Carla again I would work on reading and writing as it seems she (while she doesn’t struggle with this) struggles the most with this. Overall though I was incredibly pleased with my lesson.
This was my first English lesson. I think that overall it went quite well. The student was a high beginner level and I prepared a lesson on adverbs to teach and it closely correlated to the subject the student was already learning; comparative and superlative adjectives. While Cathy, the other English teacher, taught for the beginning portion of the lesson, I taught for the second half. I had prepared a worksheet with adverbs to fill out and I went through it with the student. I thought that the worksheet was very successful and that it both guided my teaching well, and that it made the concept easy to understand for the student. One thing that I could have done better is that I could have better prompted the student to contribute adverbs or to use adverbs. While I did this, he did not always create a sentence and I think that I could work on the way in which I prompt students to speak. Also, because I did not know that I would not be teaching for the entire class period, I over-prepared for the lesson and had more activities than my time frame allowed. Of course this is not reflective of my teaching ability or the success of my lesson. Overall though I was incredibly pleased with the lesson. I thought the worksheet went quite well, and will certainly use it again and will likely someday use my full lesson.
This lesson I think was the least successful of my lessons. I worked with Jessica and Joaquin, a low intermediate student, and I prepared a lesson covering the present perfect tense through the lesson of a bucket list (e.g. what have you done on this bucket list?). Once again I had over prepared, not knowing that I wouldn’t be teaching the entire period. However, where I went wrong regarding this lesson is my grammar presentation. I did not refer to my lesson plan for this and because of that I introduced the grammar topic in a non-consecutive way that I do not think made much sense. Later in the lesson, during the bucket list structured activity, I was able to remedy this and I think that portion of the lesson went really well, and helped the student to understand the topic and here I was able to prompt the student to contribute sentences better than in my other two English lessons. Generally, I think the lesson plan was very good, and I think I did eventually get the topic across the student and build a comfortable rapport with him, I just think I need to better plan for what exactly I want to say when I introduce my grammar point. I will certainly improve this plan and use it in the future though.
This lesson went quite well. I worked with Cathy again and prepared another worksheet- this time one to go over prepositions. The worksheet was again successful, and this time the student (a beginner level) knew the information I was teaching so the lesson became review. Once again the worksheet guided my teaching and helped me to remember everything that I wanted to say. I think this greatly improves my ability to explain a concept. Even so, there are two things I think I could have improved on for this lesson. One, even though I knew ahead of time for this lesson I would only be teaching for part of the time period, I still over prepared and we were unable to finish the worksheet. I also elaborated on some things that I could have brushed over that would have made the lesson move quicker. Secondly, once again I think I could have done a much better job at choosing comprehension questions. Cathy came in multiple time after I had spoken to ask comprehension questions that better prompted the student to speak. This aspect of teaching is definitely something I want to improve. All in all though, the lesson went well, the student appreciate the review, and I think I made another worksheet that I will keep and continue to use.
Author: Buenos Aires TEFL