Troubleshooting in TEFL Teaching
With the rapid development of the times, today's education is very different from the past. There are some new characteristics for the current education. Teachers are facing many new situations and problems. Teachers need to accept challenges and adjust their roles in time to adapt to the development of today's education.
This post was written by our TEFL certification graduate Xiangyan L. Please note that this blog post might not necessarily represent the beliefs or opinions of ITTT.
Why do language teachers encounter all kinds of problems in class?
Because of the diversity of students, students' character, language ability, interests, different motivations. Their different cultural backgrounds make English teaching more complicated and challenging. As a result of this, we provide some troubleshooting to deal with the problems.
How to build rapport?
For teachers, when we meet the students for the first time, how can we deliver this vital course to build up a great rapport with our students? We should understand it clearly that the aim is to find out what our students need with English and get to know the actual level of each class member. After that, we can make full use of some corresponding activities such as questionnaires, surveys, pass ball games, and need analysis to reach our goals.
At the beginning of the class, if we can build up a warm and inspiring atmosphere, the course will be more efficient. For this point, warmer is recommended. They are usually short, fun, communicative activities designed to get students motivated and using English. A tongue twister is the typical one.
Another difficulty we meet is the different levels of our students.
Some students are easier to learn than others, and the others fall behind. There are lots of ways to solve it. We give different materials for different students; we can also hand out the same materials to finish a different task. We even can pair stronger students with weak ones.
Imagine that you are having the large size of the lesson, this would be quite challenging, yes, we can hand out worksheets to involve every student in instead of going through activities. Pair/group work, clarity, choral repetition, and appointing group leaders to play a part.
It occurs to us that students sometimes use native tongue in monolingual classes, should the teacher forbid it? It may hurt students’ passion to learn English. We can do a lot of positive things about this kind of situation. We can not only set up the activities at an appropriate level but also make sure that students can cope with their languages.
When we meet the young group students like primary students, we will inevitably deal with their parents. We need to give feedback to the parents. But sometimes someone may blame the teacher for bad grades. How could you deal with this problem? Take me for an example: I once worked in an English institution which aimed at improving the grades at school. Mary was one of my students, she always stayed up too late. So she took a nap when she went to study. Altering getting the bad grades, her mother was angry with me. When she complained to me, I talked with her and made her study plan for the students. I told her only Mary can sleep on time, can she get enough energy to study. Mary made progress with our three collaborations. We need to communicate more with not only students but also parents to help children.
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For reluctant students, we use plenty of pair work, controlled practice, role-play even a tape recorder to motivate them. when students have some listening difficulties, we usually help them have an intimate knowledge of the difficult vocabulary and make sure the quality of the tape is normal. Some schools may lack the study resources, we provide some useful resources like BBC, PURDUE University.
As Aristotle said,’ The roots of education are bitter, but the fruit is sweet’. We might face other trouble in the road of teaching, therefore we can still develop students in a better direction.
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