Monday, November 30, 2009

Long time no blog.

Hello everyone! It’s been about a week since I last posted, but I have a good reason for that, or should I say several! First, as I mentioned in my last post, the rest of the week I had tests, so nothing really to comment on there. Then last Monday was a holiday. Tuesday I had work, but no scheduled classes, and from Wednesday to Saturday I had to be away for personal reasons, so there you have it! Fortunately, things are now back to normal, and I can restart this blog, although I have to say that it might be best to combine both Monday’s and Friday’s communication classes because I rarely change the lesson plan unless something really doesn’t work in one class. Anyway perhaps for now, I will continue as is, so here we go.

As usual, we started with the review quiz (they were scheduled to have a test today, but had to be rescheduled). After the review quiz was finished and taken in, I handed back their homework and then handed out the sentence stress handout. I then had them choose different partners because they tend to sit with the same person all the time, and I think it is important to have them meet other students. I gave them enough time to work on it in pairs, and while they were working, I wrote the questions on the board. I then had individual students come up and write in the stress. I was quite happy to see that for the most part, students knew what was stressed and what wasn’t. Next, I had them in pairs read and repeat after one another. I sat with one student because there was an odd number. After that, I had them take out the handout from last class, and I wrote a table on the board with the words stressed and unstressed. I then wrote different parts of speech on the board and asked them what parts are usually stressed and which aren’t. Again I was happy to notice that students caught on to the question right away, and most could finish in the time allotted. I then called on individual students to tell me whether or not a specific part was stressed or not.

Once we had finished the sentence stress, I told them about next class’s topic – connected speech. Then we started unit 6 in the textbook. First, I dictated six questions for a listening comprehension activity and then we practiced the conversation first together and then in pairs, again I worked with a student. Finally, I had them do a sentence unscramble activity to give them some example questions to ask, as this chapter’s focus was on asking questions to show interest.

I thought today that maybe in the future if I continue to use this book or if I continue the pronunciation tasks, I should make complete units, so that one week is pronunciation and the other a chapter in the book, or it may be better to reduce the number of sentences for the practice. I think the pronunciation although only once a week is still valuable to the students, but at the same time, not using or hardly using the textbook does not seem good either, so perhaps the reduction method may be the best way. Of course, it really depends on whether I will use the book next year or not and even if I will use a book in my classes, something which I will have to decide soon I think.

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