Benefits of Implementing Created Materials in the ESL Classroom
Classroom materials are important tools in learning. These can range from books, printed materials, graphs, charts, videos, realia, and a lot of varied materials that aid in learning. It is easy to succumb to using materials that are commercially produced and textbooks that are provided by the school or the education center that a teacher works for. They are available and convenient for the busy teacher. Published materials are level-appropriate, thus, they give good practice for the students. Although sometimes the teacher needs to create his or her material at some point in the learning process. Creating materials that are tuned to the students’ needs gives the learning experience more meaningful. Students can relate better when the contents are based on their experience, culture, and beliefs.
This post was written by our TEFL certification graduate Gerardette B. Please note that this blog post might not necessarily represent the beliefs or opinions of ITTT.
Creating one’s materials could be time-consuming, takes a lot of effort for the teacher but the advantages could outweigh these inconveniences. Teachers at different levels need to be creative and not just to depend on the materials that the school will provide, often, these materials need to be substituted, enhanced, or modified to maximize the learning process.
For young learners, the teacher can create a lot of visual, kinesthetic, and auditory aids. Children learn easily when they see, manipulate, and hear. An example of this is while telling a story, the teacher can show pictures, 3D cutouts, real objects, and sound effects.
For high school and young adults, what attracts them is usually what is “trending” in technology, social media, and current events. Some books may not be up to date of these trends, thus, the teacher needs to create materials for these purposes. Nowadays, all of these are easily available online, which makes it convenient for the teacher to come up with good materials. Though caution is also necessary, materials should be appropriate to the level of the student.
Advantages of Created Materials
1. Materials are adapted to the students’ needs.
When available materials are not suited to the student’s level, they could either be too difficult or too easy. Making adjustments to the existing materials are needed before they can be effectively used in the classroom. For example, if the learners are beginner level and the vocabulary is quite difficult for them, then, the teacher can create flashcards and other visual aids to give a clearer picture of the vocabulary.
2. Materials are adapted to the students’ learning styles.
Students’ learning styles should also be considered in creating materials. These materials should cater to different learning styles. For example, for visual learners, the teacher can create PowerPoint presentations. For auditory learners, podcasts or music can benefit them. Likewise with the other learning styles. These materials can be mixed to maximize the students’ learning process. Young learners need more visual, kinesthetic, and auditory materials.
3. Authentic Materials
The teacher can use authentic materials for learning. Authentic materials are up to date, materials could be based on real-life scenarios and culturally applicable to the students. The materials would make the students able to relate and when this happens, they could feel a sense of achievement when they can engage.
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