Среда 14 августа 2013

Some thoughts and advice for teachers who develop creative abilities of the students through the teaching a foreign language.

настроение: thoughtful

ключевые слова: creative abilities, developing education, productive students’ activity, writing, reading, speaking

город: Москва

I would like to share some of my work experience with the teachers who try to develop creative abilities of students through teaching a foreign language. You will find a set of exercises in teaching vocabulary, grammar, reading, writing, speaking with the activities which develop visual memory, listening memory, association memory.

Supplement 1

Some of my teaching principles:
1. Learning should be fun and interesting
2. 99% of grammar and vocabulary should be taught in classroom. 3/4 practiced (drilled) at home.
3. English should be taught as real means of communication.

Level: Beginners.
Aim: to introduce new vocabulary
Result: to memorise new vocabulary in classroom
Preparation: pictures showing the meaning of new words or interactive whiteboard.

I. Using pictures
Teaching vocabulary

To present vocabulary, hold up pictures, saying the word clearly two or three times while the pupils listen. Children imagine that they are in a forest and repeat the word several times after you.
Then I use the following activities:

Take the first pair of pictures. Flash up the pictures confusing them. Get pupils to say the words without a verbal prompt. The pupil who says the first wins the card.

«Mystery card»
A variation of the previous activity is to cover the card with a plain sheet of paper as you hold it up, then remove the covering sheet little by little to reveal the picture.

«Hide and seek»
Say the words for all the cards in the set.
Students close their eyes when they hear a command «Close your eyes». Then the students open their eyes and try to guess the missing picture. Each time take one of the pictures.
(You can use an interactive whiteboard.)

«Remember the sequence»
Alternatively, show a sequence of pictures, drilling the word for each picture two or three times. Then give the same sequence again, but this time miss one or two words out. The pupils supply the missing words. Remove more and more words from the sequence, until pupils remember the whole set.
(You can use an interactive whiteboard.)

«Show me the word»
Give out a set of pictures for individual pupils. Pupils listen and hold up their pictures when they hear you say the word for it.

«Listen and do»
Using a selected set of pictures, give instructions to the pupils, e.g.: Touch the duck, give it to me, give the elephant to …, etc.

II. Development towards reading and writing

When the pupils are familiar with the pronunciation and meaning of the new words I use some of the following practice activities:

«Find your word»
Give out the selected pictures and write the words on the board. Pupils bring their pictures to the board and match them with the correct word.
(You can use an interactive whiteboard.)

«Word and picture match»
Jumble the pictures, stick them on the board and number them. Put up the written words in a different order where all the pupils can easily see them. Pupils find and copy the words in the same order as the numbered pictures on the board.
(You can use an interactive whiteboard.)

«First letters»
Put large alphabet cards around the room. Hold up one of the pictures. Pupils race to touch the letter of the alphabet which is the first letter of the word illustrated on the picture.

«Whispers relay» or «A broken telephone»
Pupils stand in a line, facing the board. Show the last pupil in the line a card. Pupils then whisper the word up the line to the first person, who writes up the first letter of of the word (or the whole word) on the board. The game can be played with teams who compete to be the first to write up the letter or word correctly.

Organization: groups or teams.
Materials: The same set of about ten selected cards for each team. Pupils spread out their set of pictures face-up on a table. Mouth one of the words silently. Pupils must try to lip-read the word you are saying and hold up the right card for it. Pupils can later take over the mouthing of the words for their own teams to lip-read.

«The invisible alphabet»
Demonstrate by drawing the shape of any of the small letters of the alphabet in the air with your finger. Pupils must name the letter. They then sit side by side and take turns to draw different letters in the air for each other in the same way.

«a» or «an»? «Sit or stand?»

Call out the word for any of the objects students can identify from the course so far. Mix up words which take «a» and those which take «an». The pupils sit and listen. If they think the word should take «an» they stand up; if they think it takes «a», they must stay sitting. Those who stand or sit wrongly are «out».

Organization: whole class.

Materials: you will need a blackboard.

1. Write the first letter of a word, e.g. rabbit, saying it two or three times while the pupils listen.

Then they repeat the letter several times after you. Alternatively, write the second, third…… letters of the word in different places of the blackboard.

2. Read the word and the pupils repeat the word several times after you.
3. Rub off the letters, the blackboard is clean. The pupils write the word in the air.
4. The pupils run to the blackboard and write the word.
So spelling should be taught and by the end of this exercise students are ready for the dictation.

«Display dictation» or «Wall dictation»

Once a term I suggest my students a dictation. I put the same text on the walls of the classroom in different places and ask my pupils to write a dictation. Sitting at the desk students can’t see the text. They have to come up to the text without pens, read it, remember and then get to the place and write it down. They can come up to the text as many times as they want.

Variation: Working in pairs — one goes to the text and then tells his/her what to write…

This kind of work improves spelling, visual memory.

Developing Education (Supplement)


    Read the text one by one (it is suitable to practice vocabulary, reading).

    Repeat and add new information (it is suitable for phonetic practice).

    Read short texts in groups.

    Exchange information in groups.

    Discuss details in groups with your partner) while listening.

    Retell the text one by one.



    • describe a picture
    • compose a story

    Group work

    • Make up a poem which was mixed up.
    • Connect a text which was cut.
    • Match a card or a picture for your text which one of your group mates has.

    Different students represent different parts of speech. A teacher reads sentences and the students stand in a line correspondently to their part of speech.

    «Correspondence interview»
    One of the students leaves the class-room. The other students receive cards with questions:

    What will the absent student do after classes? What does he like?

    The students try to predict his possible answers. Then the student comes in and answers the question himself. Then they compare the answers.

    «Participation in group plot games»
    e.g. Topic: «The Geographical position of the US A».

    1. Divide the students into 2 groups.
    2. Each group has a geographical map of the U S A.
    3. One of the groups asks a riddle about one of the states.
    4. The rival group tries to find the state on the map and ask about 10 questions using the map.

My work with the students of different abilities and levels of knowledge

e.g. Dialogue (any dialogue can be suitable for this kind of work)

Aim: to develop students:
reading skills — speaking — listening — writing

Topic: «How did you spend your holidays?»

Listen to the text: A reporter from a newspaper is talking to some 7th-year student about their summer holidays … .

    1. The pictures are on the blackboard.
      Students try to establish who and what the text is about.
    1. Students come up to the blackboard and write already known expressions on the blackboard to each picture.
      went climbing went fishing played golf
      swam played football
      went sailing
    2. Students listen to the text about how John, Mandy and Robert spent their holidays. Students try to identify John, Mandy and Robert in the pictures.
    1. Students compose a dialogue using a support on the blackboard
Hi! Hi!
I’m a reporter from a newspaper. I’m Mandy.
How did you spend your holidays? I went climbing. Etc.
    1. Students role-play the dialogue.
  1. Homework:
    • Invent how Mandy, John and Robert spent their holidays.
    • Write an article to the newspaper how the children spent their holidays.
    • Write about your holidays.
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