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Do's and Don'ts When Teaching Young Learners

Do's and Don'ts When Teaching Young Learners | ITTT | TEFL Blog

Firstly within your lessons do always use English as the language of instruction.You need to speak slowly and you need to reduce the amount of teacher talk time by using gesture and mime as often as possible.

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Do play games as often as possible but bear in mind that the games that we're suggesting here are interactive communicative games that have some educational purpose.

Do try to make yourself aware of any problems that they do have, either within school or outside of school because they can affect the way that the students behave and interact with each other.

Do try to change the dynamic of the classroom as often as possible and this can relate to the actual seating arrangement within the classroom, who they work with in terms of pair work, or who they work with in terms of groups so try to change that dynamic when you can.

Do always be fair and consistent within the operating rules that you have within the classroom. This will help you with the discipline within the classroom. Inconsistency can cause discipline to degrade.

Don't be tempted to use their Native language, even if you know it well. As soon as the students know that you have some appreciation of their native language, quite often they'll just sit and wait for you to use it. So always use English as the language of instruction.

With young learners it's quite important that we don't put them on the spot because that can cause them to lose their confidence very quickly. One way that we can reduce the chance of that happening is obviously to use pair work with our students.

At this young age don't expect them to have everything that they're going to need within the lesson. At this age we tend to be quite forgetful so we may not have a pen or a piece of paper and we (the teacher) need to be prepared for that when we come to the lesson.

Perhaps another thing that we can put in this section is don't ever be afraid of making fun of ourselves. Our lessons can be much more engaging for example if we're learning about the vocabulary of animals, if we as the teacher actually act out what those animals are. So we shouldn't be self-conscious.

When you set out rules for the students don’t actually break them yourself. If you say that no one should be talking when you are talking then you shouldn't interrupt your students in that way either.

It is also very important that you don’t use physical punishment and finally it is very important particularly in different cultures that you don't get angry.

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