The art of teaching is the art of assisting Discovery.(Mark Van Doren)
- Techniques you might use to motivate and energize a classroom.
Personal experience shows that a motivated and passion Teacher is always the key for a successful class.
We must get the students’ attention and give some activities that involve them in order that they should speak, create more and the Teacher will just guide and manage the learning process.
It is important to focus in different combinations and partners, depends on the number of students, we may divide them into two or three groups or in pairs because they usually have different backgrounds. Furthermore, they can contribute for a better interaction and an excellent work together sharing knowledge.
Despite the difficulties, working in groups or pairs, the students may encourage the classmates to develop a better result, dividing different experiences. The classes have to be student-centered to boost their motivation and also their autonomy for the best learning process and either to improve the soft skills.
Teachers also can bring some games, competitions and debates to make learning fun and creating a good environment.
The soft skills, when working in class usually enhance the quality of the learning process making the students more independent and self-confident because they will be able to build a good relationship between the classmates and also other skills.
- Problems you would expect teaching a group of students who all speak different languages.
Generally, we believe that students know at least the level which is required to understand and to communicate in class. It is especially important when students should explain their ideas.
These intercultural classrooms may be a great opportunity to develop the student’s needs. Sometimes it is necessary to give them slower instructions and explanations, otherwise they can have some problems to understand. Some flash cards, pictures and gestures can help to solve the problem.
Try to have fun, the Teacher must be enthusiastic, active and hardworking because the linguistic diversity would also be a problem. Give students the chance to talk and getting each other more, do not hesitate to give ideas and have a constant communication will be beneficial.
The shyness and being insecure may cause some problems, break the ice when teaching is a good technique. When people don’t know the other countries culture can be difficult to interact even though the students have the same purpose that is experience a new language.
Technology is a very important tool to enrich the classes, to practice the vocabulary, pronunciation and also curiosities and videos about multicultural countries.
All the difficulties demand special attention, some motivational strategies, innovative ideas, might be the key to encourage students. Interaction between students and the Teacher is fundamental, not be afraid of speaking with others and should not be afraid of making mistakes.
It is important to be aware of our skills, it is always possible to acquire more and more knowledge and respecting the individual competences for everyone.
Lantolf, James P. (ed.) (2000), Sociocultural Theory and Second Language Learning. Oxford University Press.
Sandra Cunha é graduada em Letras e pós-graduada em língua portuguesa e literaturas da língua portuguesa. Possui certificado em Teaching Knowledge Test – TKT. É professora de inglês e de Língua Portuguesa para Estrangeiros há mais de 14 anos em Escolas de Idiomas, Empresas e Escola Particular.