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3 Ideas on How to Enhance Your Classroom Experience

3 Ideas on How to Enhance Your Classroom Experience | ITTT | TEFL Blog

Classroom Management is a skill that a teacher must try to learn and gain. This skill is a skill of managing the class, organizing the class and the classroom, having a relaxed manner, and maintaining discipline. As a teacher, it’s not easy to have a relaxed manner and maintain discipline at the same time. To achieve this goal the teacher needs to know how to balance. How a class is managed effectively and efficiently can affect how students perform in the class. Which is another word that means the classroom management decides the environment of studying?

This post was written by our TEFL certification graduate WING Y. Please note that this blog post might not necessarily represent the beliefs or opinions of ITTT.

1. Classroom arrangement

When the first thing you get inside one classroom the first thing you see is the classroom arrangement. I have seen different classes arrange their classroom in many different unique ways and most of them have the reasons why they place it in their way. As far as I am concerned, seating arrangements can affect students. I have experienced that two students can be emotional almost half the day just because they are not satisfied with the seats the teacher organized them in.

I think a classroom should be separated into around three parts (grade 1 to grade 4). One area for the teacher. Two or three parts for the students. Within these three parts for students, one area is the table/ seat part for them to study. This part is easy for them to do group work in class. This kind of seating arrangement is called Separate tables. Another part can put a carpet which when the teacher needs to give instruction they can all come to the carpet and listen. If the classroom has extra space they can design a learning corner for students to read.

When arranging the classroom there are so many questions the teacher needs to consider such as which arrangement the students are comfortable with each other or which arrangement the teacher can maintain effective control over the class. These questions can be solved if the teacher has good enough information about each student and knows their personalities. So the next part will talk about how to establish rapport or relationship with the students.

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2. Establish rapport

It’s very important to build a good relationship between the teacher and students if you want a successful and enjoyable output. The atmosphere plays an important part here. If the students like the atmosphere and the teacher they will participate. They will relax and learn. There are several practical ways to help establish rapport. As a teacher, every morning you can ask how they feel what they do the day before which can show them you care about them and their daily lives. Don’t start the course directly. At the beginning of the course I can play circle talk. Which belongs to the engage phase. They can also play a silly dance game so that when they throw out all their sillies they can focus. Let the students know they are responsible for their classroom and when they do something good for their environment such as pick up the garbage the teacher can give some rewards. But only give as a surprise.

As a teacher, always smile and give clear instructions. Be patient enough to handle the same questions or different issues at the same time.

In one class a teacher can’t control the class all the time. Because the first reason is the students will be tired and feel bored with the class. The second reason is it's not good for the skills balance. There are four skills in learning English: listening, reading, writing, and speaking. It’s very important to speak while learning English. So next and the last part is about the teacher talking time and student talking time.

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3. Teacher talking time & Student talking time

In class, there is time for the teacher talking for example when it’s time to give instruction or when a certain activity needs to be announced. Another time for teachers is when setting up activities. There are still many situations where the teacher is talking time.

Student talking time depends on different activities or assignments being given to them. Let’s say in the engage phase most of the time is a student talking time. Study phase half for teacher half for students. The Active phase most of the time is a student talking time.

Why managing teacher talking time is so important is because it’s also part of the class management and it affects the effectiveness and efficiency of the class. There are several ways for teaching to be used to avoid unnecessary teacher talking time. The teacher can choose carefully the language for explanations and instructions. Also, another way is to use language that is at or below the level being taught so that no need extra time to explain again to students if they don’t understand in the first place.

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From above I can see classroom management plays an important role in class. It can affect the relationship between students and students and also between teachers and students. A successful and enjoyable class needs to be maintained by both teacher and students.

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