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  • Brian
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    • September 19, 2006, 01:07:56 pm
    • Pittsburgh / Jeollanam-do
What should I do during my teachers workshop?
« on: March 27, 2008, 11:47:33 am »
Okay, the basic gist of this post is "What do you do in your weekly teachers' workshops?"   

* * *

Alex, I'm sorry for getting wordy, but here's some context:


I really don't enjoy doing the workshops.  They're my least favorite classes of the week.  My coworkers don't like doing them either, and actually 1/3 never show up. 

I find teaching teachers pretty unsatisfying. Maybe my expectations are too high.  They've been exposed to English all their lives, they've studied it longer than I've been alive, and they've been teaching for 20 - 30 years.  But they're just not into it.  A few of them even said they don't like teaching English because it threatens Korean culture. ( ::)  I guess a rant on that topic could fill up a class period, haha)  On the other hand, there are some coworkers who have no English skills at all, and who really want to take a workshop with me, but because of time constraints they can't.  I'd love to give up this mandatory workshop and teach people who actually want to be taught, but whatever . . .

On the first workshop of the year I did introductions, talked about what I'll be doing in my English classes, and also asked them what they wanted to do in the workshop.  "It's up to you."  Okay, so I asked for more specifics: for example, some teachers want to improve Classroom English, some want to practice listening, some want to read news articles, some want "free talking," etc.  Again, "it's up to you."  I asked if they wanted to read articles, they said no.  I asked if they wanted me to give them something to read in advance and then bring it in, they said no.  It does take some time to build up rapport (sp?), I know, but some of the lighthearted stuff just sparks no interest. 

So, with my one school I've been doing current events.  Specifically, trying to encourage conversation about English education.  As you know the new president has a lot of ideas about English, and people in this province have a lot of ideas about him.  Nobody except my coteacher---who like me tries really hard to fill the silence---volunteered anything.  So my classes there are just me posing questions, waiting for a response, then going around the room asking each teacher the question.  Very unnatural, and isn't very helpful.  Except for my coteacher, they all just sit there looking at the floor.  It's not from a lack of ability or comprehension, because they can make answers when I ask them.  They're just not into it.

At my other school, they hate workshops too, but they're more cooperative.  So I mix it up and do a little of everything: some free talking, some current events, some grammar, some pronunciation practice, some Classroom English stuff, etc.  Works pretty well, but then again these teachers are more talkative and more opinionated.  When I've imported these lessons over to the other school, they've bombed.

So, what do you do and what am I doing wrong? 

On the one hand I want a light atmosphere.  The teachers are busy, I'm busy, and there's no need to give them headaches by actually making them study something.

On the other hand, though, I actually want to teach them something.  These classes are required for a reason, and the teachers do need a lot of practice and instruction, in spite of decades of language study. 

Next week I'm going to have them look at their textbooks, and we're going to talk about ways for them to incorporate English into their grammar and reading classes (since they don't use English now).  A few minutes of warm-up, the textbook, and maybe some pronunciation practice, and that should take up a class period.  Anybody else actually do lessons like that?  I'm tempted to lead classes at that school like that, so as to hopefully get them to learn something.  If they lighten up a little then maybe we can switch to talking.

I looked over some of the lessons Vanessa posted earlier, and I'm just not sure they'd enjoy them.  Could try, I guess, but spontaneity (sp?) and creativity don't really seem to work. 


So what do you all do? 

And does anybody else have really dull classes?  For my own sake I hope I'm not the only one.    :-[
« Last Edit: May 12, 2012, 01:41:23 am by Brian »
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  • Samuel
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    • September 27, 2006, 10:21:05 am
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Re: Teacher workshops . . . what do you do, and what am I doing wrong?
« Reply #1 on: March 27, 2008, 12:35:25 pm »
Workshops are a pain in the ass. Suggestions: print out a dear Abby article without the chicks response. Have the teachers brainstorm responses. Next, doing horoscopes is interesting. Also, doing slang is all right. Print out a list of 20 pieces of slang and teach it to them. Dave's has a list of slang. Just find ones that are interesting. The same can be done for phrasal verbs. Koreans are so poor at those. (Get in, get at, get for, get away, get by etc.). Workshops are boring. They don't want to be there, and neither do I. I always ask my co-teacher if she wants to cancel workshops for the day. I mean, hey, if you are too busy, then just cancel it, because we all know how hard Korean teachers work. I just be playing my part.
Man erkennt einen Philosophen daran, daß er drei glänzenden und lauten Dingen aus dem Wege geht: dem Ruhme, den Fürsten und den Frauen - womit nicht gesagt ist, daß sie nicht zu ihm kämen.

Nietzsche


  • Virginia
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    • 93

    • September 19, 2006, 01:20:41 pm
    • Suncheon
Re: Teacher workshops . . . what do you do, and what am I doing wrong?
« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2008, 02:52:42 pm »
Oh wow... I really miss my workshops from last year.

I had two different workshops - one was for English teachers (and they hardly ever came, but when they did, it was fabulous) and one was for the other teachers (and we really had fun).

I used things specifically geared towards Adult ESL learners (which is quite different from activities that you might use for kids). Adult learners will tend to be shyer and less likely to take a risk than kids. Add to that the Korean concept of "losing face" and even people who have studied English for decades may not want to speak. And this is not limited to Asia. My principal in Quebec once admitted to me (after years of working together) that he was shy about his accent, which is why he and I could only communicate in French, not English.

But I digress....

Look at the topics or the activities. A communicative activity that is semi-controlled or controlled will "force" the learners to speak (i.e. one that involves reading).

Look at the format your class is taking. Discussion and arguments do not have a big place in Korean learning.

Is the atmosphere in the class comfortable? With an all-woman group, I was able to do some more feminist discussions.... with lower learners, I found myself doing all of the talking. Also, approaching it like "They hate this. I hate this...." is certainly a recipe for disaster. Fake it. Pretend that they love the class, get excited about it, and hopefully things might change.

Lower level learners tend to benefit from concrete topics - hypothetical ones (using conditional verbs) will be harder to express. One of my best workshops ever was when I first arrived in Korea. I noticed that there was a holiday during the week, and I asked the teachers "Why?". It ended up being a full (unplanned) hour of them explaining each Korean holiday to me (which I wrote in my agenda, thus killing two birds with one stone).

Have a question that needs an answer given, but that is open to "Why" in order to explain it.... the why might only end up being a few words, but it's a start.

Finally - it has been proven that adults who drink one or two (alcoholic) beverages while learning a language lose inhibitions enough to express themselves more freely (comes back to the shyness factor) *and* will make connections between grammatical notions - I'm not making this stuff up - I actually had to read the study in University! (Of course, this explains why I was fluent in Spanish while I drank rum on a beach in Cuba but now, not so much.... ) Anyway, I am not suggesting taking the teachers out to get drunk, but why not bring something - like tea or coffee - to encourage a more relaxed atmosphere.

I hope this helps... in the early days of waygook.org, I posted a link to a bunch of ESL discussion topics that have been proven to work in the classroom... might be worth taking a look at too.
******
Nobody is interested in something you didn't do.
******


  • Brian
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    • September 19, 2006, 01:07:56 pm
    • Pittsburgh / Jeollanam-do
Re: Teacher workshops . . . what do you do, and what am I doing wrong?
« Reply #3 on: March 31, 2008, 03:13:27 pm »
Those are some good tips, thanks.  I think I'd better stick to something more concrete and see what happens, like you suggested, and maybe err on the side of making it too easy this time around.  I think I introduced the topic last time in the wrong way, so they might not have totally followed me. 

Samuel also had some good ones.  This next week I'm going to do some stuff from our textbooks, give them some tips for classroom English, do some chalk and talk, and probably read over the Korea Beat article on those ID cards.   

I'm gonna have to dig through that JLP Resource Book again, see if I can't find something.

Thanks again.

Still curious about what others do in their classes. 
In Korea from 2005 - 2010, not in Korea now.  Please contact an active moderator for quick answers to your questions.

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Re: Teacher workshops . . . what do you do, and what am I doing wrong?
« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2008, 03:55:38 pm »
Well, you can be as positive as you want, V, but I'm totally with Smee... 
My.
Workshop.
Is.
Brutal.
Last year I always tried to have an interesting article related to Korea prepared, or something that happening in Canada.  They wanted to have the article to read before hand so they could pre-plan a formulaeic sentence...so i did that.  But still,
Workshops.
Were.
Brutal.
This year before school, they used some of my budget that I never use anyway to buy some textbooks for their workshop.  They had me go to the bookstore with them and pick one out together.  I thought, great!  Maybe this is what they needed?
Nuhn-uhn.
I've discovered that it just doesn't work.
I'll takeyour comment about alcohol into consideration though!  (no, seriously....also, on a sidenote, that would seem explain why I think I converse much better in Korean when wasted...)
The problem for me is the age differences.
I have two young quite fluent teachers in my group, and two older pretty-poor speakers, and two medium age and medium ability guys.  The older guys don't say much cos they can't.  The medium guys speak a lot, but with constant misunderstandings snowball together in an off-topic train of thought that's impossible to put back on track.  And the younger guys don't say much cos
a) they don't want to make the old guys feel bad in comparison
b) they have to watch their mouths and not say anything "controvesial"
And today I learned that things I didn't congnitively recognize as "controversial" seem to be here.  blah.  What a bummer.
And nothing says worse-than-normal failure like trying to do something other than just read from an article, as I've found out time and again.
It's frustrating because I don't feel a sense of growth as a teacher inthe workshops.  In the classroom with kids, I feel I've grown and improved so much in so many ways...but as soon as the teachers walk in, it's as bad as my frist week here.  waa :(

So smee, we're in the same boat.
Virginia...I'll give the soju thing a shot next week! :D :P


  • goulash
  • Veteran

    • 160

    • September 19, 2006, 01:41:40 pm
    • Yeosu
Re: Teacher workshops . . . what do you do, and what am I doing wrong?
« Reply #5 on: April 01, 2008, 09:29:41 am »
I'm with Smee on this one.  The teachers workshops here were horrible.

The thing I really didn't understand was that, with the exception of one older teacher, all of them were aprox the same age (in their 20's) and all of them have quite good English... but the workshops ended up being exactly how Smee described them. I would ask the class a question. No one would answer, so I would go around and ask each of them individually and they would answer one by one. Not exactly the best way to have a "discussion".

The only workshops that I did which seemed to work was when I was in Yeongsanpo. They had a preset format (and are actually known as an "elite group" in Jeollanamdo) in the style of a worldwide group called "toastmasters". I believe they actually joined the group... but their format was very different to the original group.

So each week, each person is given a task (organised at the end of the previous workshop). The tasks (not sure if I have the correct title for each of them, but you'll get my point) include:
* Toastmaster (basically the MC)
* Speech Master (must prepare a 3 minute "speech" on a current event type topic)
* Ummm counter (has to count how many grammatical errors and unnatural pauses the Speech Master makes)
* Time Keeper (each task has a set time)
* Joke master (tells a joke)
* Responder (basically thanks everyone and summarises the meeting... like a minutes keeper)
* Discussion Master (someone who poses a difficult question to the group and they have to come up with an answer. Hypothetical / controversial quesions were good)

There were probably other jobs as well, but it ran like a very formal meeting where the Toastmaster would get up and say stuff like "Thank you Mister Speech Master for your interesting dialogue. Now the Joke Master will give us our light-hearted moment for the week..."

It was strange, but seemed to work for them. When I left, they were changing the format a little, so that it went on a 3 week rotation of a proper debate format one week, Toastmaster format the next week and free speech the last week.

Don't know if any of this helps... I just thought I'd throw in my experiences so far.
Goulash
walkabout.wombat@gmail.com


Re: Teacher workshops . . . what do you do, and what am I doing wrong?
« Reply #6 on: April 01, 2008, 06:45:09 pm »
After a year and a half, my teachers finally started to have workshops.  I usually use a newspaper article, staying away from controversial issues.  I try to use issues of everyday life, health and fitness and so on.  They like these topics because everyone knows something about them. 

However, for my last workshops, I used Sam's idea of the Dear Abbey advice column.  I gave them the article ahead of time, but left out the reply.  I asked them to think about possible answers, we shared them and then finally read the answer from the article as a group.  They seemed to like this idea.

I also try to find some strange or interesting facts or stories to go over to finish the workshop.  Today I shared an email I received about the human body and some of the weird things about it.  Some examples were that people who dream more usually have higher IQs and your big toe has 2 bones while the smaller toes all have 3 bones.  There was a big list.  They really liked these and some made for good laughs.  I see all kinds of interesting ideas like these on yahoo.com or other home pages on a daily basis. 

Finally, we have tea, coffee, and snacks everyweek.  I'm lucky because my workshop happens during 5th and 6th period on Tuesday afternoons.  So to the teachers it's a bit of a break and they seem to relax and enjoy themselves there as opposed to when it was at 4:00 and they just didn't come.       

I'll try to post some of the strange facts/stories in the near future. 


Re: Teacher workshops . . . what do you do, and what am I doing wrong?
« Reply #7 on: April 01, 2008, 06:48:48 pm »
I know its long, but here are some ideas you can use in workshops. 

The human body:
The human body is a machine that is full of wonder. This collection
of human body facts will leave you wondering why in the heck we were
created and designed the way we were.
-Scientists say the higher your I.Q. the more you dream.
-The largest cell in the human body is the female egg and the
smallest is the male sperm.
-You use 200 muscles to take one step.
-The average woman is 5 inches shorter than the average man.
-Your big toes have two bones each while the rest have three.
-A pair of human feet contain 250,000 sweat glands.
A full bladder is roughly the size of a soft ball.
-The acid in your stomach is strong enough to dissolve razor blades.
-The human brain cell can hold 5 times as much information as the
Encyclopedia Britannica.
-It takes the food seven seconds to get from your mouth to your stomach.
-The average human dream lasts 2-3 seconds
-Men without hair on their chests are more likely to get cirrhosis
of the liver than men with hair.
-At the moment of conception, you spent about half an hour as a single cell
-There is about one trillion bacteria on each of your feet.
-Your body gives off enough heat in 30 minutes to bring half a
gallon of water to a boil.
-The enamel in your teeth is the hardest substance in your body.
-Your teeth start growing 6 months before you are born.
-When you are looking at someone you love, your pupils dilate, they
do the same when you are looking at someone you hate.
-Blondes have more hair than dark-haired people.
-Your thumb is the same length of your nose.
Now I KNOW you are placing your thumb on your NOSE, aren't you?
I DID AND IT IS


Another one: Joke about teachers
Are you sick of high paid teachers?
> Teachers' hefty salaries are driving up taxes, and they only
> work 9 or 10 months a year! It's time we put things in perspective and
> pay them for what they do - baby sit!
> We can get that for less than minimum wage. That's right.
> Let's give them $3.00 an hour and only the hours they worked--not any
> of that silly planning time, or any time they spend before or after
> school.
> That would be $19.50 a day (7:45to 3:00 PM with 45 min. off
> for lunch and plan -- that equals 6 1/2 hours). Each parent
> should pay $19.50 a day for these teachers to baby-sit their
> children.
> Now how many do they teach in day...maybe 30? So that's
> $19.50 x 30 = $585.00 a day. However, remember they only work
> 180 days a year!!! I am not going to pay them for any
> vacations.
> LET'S SEE.... That's $585 X 180= $105,300 per year. (Hold on! My
> calculator needs new batteries).
> What about those special education teachers and the ones with Master's
> degrees? Well, we could pay them minimum wage ($7.75), and just to be
> fair, round it off to $8.00 an hour.
> That would be $8 X 6 1/2 hours X 30 children X 180 days =
> $280,800 per year.
> Wait a minute -- there's something wrong here!
> There sure is! The average teacher's salary (nation wide) is $50,000.
> $50,000/180 days = $277.77/per day/30 students=$9.25/6.5 hours = $1.42
> per hour per student --a very inexpensive baby-sitter and they even
> EDUCATE your kids!)
> WHAT A DEAL!!
> Make a teacher smile...send this to someone who appreciates teachers.

and another

LIFE IN THE 1500'S
The next time you are washing your hands and complain because the water temperature isn't just how you like it, think about how things used to be. Here are some facts about the 1500s:
Most people got married in June because they took their yearly bath in May, and still smelled pretty good by June. However, they were starting to smell, so brides carried a bouquet of flowers to hide the body odor. Hence the custom today of carrying a bouquet when getting married.

Baths consisted of a big tub filled with hot water. The man of the house had the privilege of the nice clean water, then all the other sons and men, then the women and finally the children. Last of all the babies. By then the water was so dirty you could actually lose someone in it. Hence the saying, Don't throw the baby out with the Bath water..
Houses had thatched roofs-thick straw-piled high, with no wood underneath. It was the only place for animals to get warm, so all the cats and other small animals (mice, bugs) lived in the roof When it rained it became slippery and sometimes the animals would slip and fall off the roof. Hence the saying . It's raining cats and dogs.

There was nothing to stop things from falling into the house.. This posed a real problem in the bedroom where bugs and other droppings could mess up your nice clean bed. Hence, a bed with big posts and a sheet hung over the top afforded some protection. That's how canopy beds came into existence.

The floor was dirt. Only the wealthy had something other than dirt. Hence the saying, Dirt poor. The wealthy had slate floors that would get slippery in the winter when wet, so they spread thresh (straw) on floor to help keep their footing. As the winter wore on, they added more thresh until, when you opened the door, it would all start slipping outside. A piece of wood was placed in the entrance way. Hence the saying a thresh hold.

In those old days, they cooked in the kitchen with a big kettle that always hung over the fire. Every day they lit the fire and added things to the pot. They ate mostly vegetables and did not get much meat. They would eat the stew for dinner, leaving leftovers in the pot to get cold overnight and then start over the next day. Sometimes stew had food in it that had been there for quite a while. Hence the rhyme, Peas porridge hot, peas porridge cold, peas porridge in the pot nine days old..

Sometimes they could obtain pork, which made them feel quite special. When visitors came over, they would hang up their bacon to show off. It was a sign of wealth that a man could, bring home the bacon. They would cut off a little to share with guests and would all sit around and chew the fat..

Those with money had plates made of pewter. Food with high acid content caused some of the lead to leach onto the food, causing lead poisoning death. This happened most often with tomatoes, so for the next 400 years or so, tomatoes were considered poisonous.

Bread was divided according to status. Workers got the burnt bottom of the loaf, the family go t the middle, and guests got the top, or the upper crust.

Lead cups were used to drink ale or whisky. The combination would sometimes knock the imbibers out for a couple of days. Someone walking along the road would take them for dead and prepare them for burial. They were laid out on the kitchen table for a couple of days and the family would gather around and eat and drink and wait and see if they would wake up. Hence the custom of holding a wake.

England is old and small and the local folks started running out of places to bury people. So they would dig up coffins and would take the bones to a bone-house, and reuse the grave. When reopening these coffins, 1 out of 25 coffins were found to have scratch marks on the inside and they realised they had been burying people alive . So they would tie a string on the wrist of the corpse, lead it through the coffin and up through the ground and tie it to a bell. Someone would have to sit out in the graveyard all night (the graveyard shift.) to listen for the bell; thus, someone could be, saved by the bell or was considered a ...dead ringer..

whoever said History was boring ! ! !


Another one:

Life before computers
Memory was something you lost with age
An application was for employment
A program was a TV show
A cursor used profanity

A keyboard was a piano
A web was a spider's home
A virus was the flu
A CD was a bank account

A hard drive was a long trip on the road
A mouse pad was where a mouse lived

And if you had a 3 inch floppy.
. . You just hoped nobody ever found out!?! 





>
> ________________________________
« Last Edit: April 01, 2008, 07:05:55 pm by capebretonbarbarian »


  • Brian
  • Featured Contributor

    • 735

    • September 19, 2006, 01:07:56 pm
    • Pittsburgh / Jeollanam-do
Re: Teacher workshops . . . what do you do, and what am I doing wrong?
« Reply #8 on: April 07, 2008, 05:11:04 pm »
.
« Last Edit: February 01, 2019, 01:00:08 am by Brian »
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  • Samuel
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    • September 27, 2006, 10:21:05 am
    • Mokpo
    more
Re: Teacher workshops . . . what do you do, and what am I doing wrong?
« Reply #9 on: April 10, 2008, 09:08:47 am »
If Korean teachers don't care about learning English, then it's their problem. It used to bother me that Korean teachers had such a bad attitude about workshops, but now I just don't care either. I had one guy come  to his first workshop half way through the year, then sign his name on my sheet, and then leave, never to come again. At first I was offended, but now I couldn't care less. If he doesn't want to be in my workshop, then I hope to God he just goes somewhere else, or stays at school. I can't stand idiots like him, and there are lots of idiots I have met in 3.5 years here. Some teachers want to learn English, and I am happy to teach and talk with them. I just don't give a crap about those other idiots.
Man erkennt einen Philosophen daran, daß er drei glänzenden und lauten Dingen aus dem Wege geht: dem Ruhme, den Fürsten und den Frauen - womit nicht gesagt ist, daß sie nicht zu ihm kämen.

Nietzsche


Re: Teacher workshops . . . what do you do, and what am I doing wrong?
« Reply #10 on: May 02, 2008, 02:13:10 pm »
A link to humurous origins of words.  Something that can be shared in workshops.

http://www.waynesthisandthat.com/poex.htm


Re: Teacher workshops . . . what do you do, and what am I doing wrong?
« Reply #11 on: June 11, 2008, 02:45:12 pm »
Holey Camoley!  Am I glad that I discovered this posting! WWOWOWOWOWOW!!!

I am NOW starting to enjoy my teacher's workshops and I think there are 2 reasons for this:  Firstly, my one workshop is ONLY ladies (no male teachers!) and boy - do they let their hair down!  And the topics they want to discuss!  THEY make the suggestions!  At the moment - we are each researching 2 AFRICAN countries!!!  Why?  Because one teacher visited Spain, zipped across to Morocco, found them NOT to be like me (a South African!) and BINGO!

The second reason is simple:  I REFUSE to join the Toastmaster's Group for dinner and drinking - my excuse is that I am a lady who has to travel home alone late at night from Kwang-ju, and I drink only wine - which is true!  If there is wine, or I may bring some - I shall join in (WINE in Korea??  NOOO Soju!!!) 

And since then, we enjoy the Toastmaster's meeting - and the pressure for me to join their socialising afterwards is removed.  As was stated earlier, the fact that this group DOES have a format, helps greatly.

But truth being told - last year, I was SERIOUSLY doubting my teaching ability and skills, given my interaction with the teachers!

So - there is hope - and there is light relief along the way!  Good luck to all!


Re: Teacher workshops . . . what do you do, and what am I doing wrong?
« Reply #12 on: June 17, 2008, 11:25:44 am »
Libra, your story was wonderfully inspiring :)  Thanks for sharing.  On down days like this, I need to read things like this


  • banana
  • Waygookin

    • 23

    • September 07, 2010, 08:44:08 am
    • Busan
What should I do during my "teachers workshop?"
« Reply #13 on: March 11, 2011, 03:16:17 pm »
I'm being asked to do a teacher's workshop twice a week at lunchtimes. I've not done one before, and I'm not entirely sure it'll actually happen, but I've got to write a topic list for the next 20 weeks and was looking for some ideas! So far I've got the difference between UK and US English...
« Last Edit: May 04, 2011, 10:20:36 am by sepeterson211 »


Re: Teacher's Workshop
« Reply #14 on: March 11, 2011, 03:29:46 pm »
Depending on the level of your teachers English there is an advanced section to waygook that can help with TW. I use TED videos in my TW they seem to go over well. Especially talks related to education or English. Also news articles on current events work sometimes...


  • krb974
  • Adventurer

    • 38

    • April 28, 2010, 09:04:47 am
    • Suncheon
Re: Teacher's Workshop
« Reply #15 on: March 11, 2011, 03:56:25 pm »
One thing that went over really well at my English Teacher workshops was doing a 'practical English' portion.  Topics I covered were: drinking (getting hammered, doing shots, drinking a 2-4 etc...), greetings (welcome, how's it going, what's up, hi, how you doing? etc...), dating (asking out, dating, seeing each other, committed relationship, casual dating, etc...), weather (smells like rain, red in the morning sailor warning red in the evening in the clear, etc...), making plans (are you available? Double booked, reschedule, I'm in, etc...), bullying (picked on, targeted, loner, loser, harassed, etc...), shopping terminology (sticker price, exchanging, returning, put on hold, lay-away, just looking, window shopping, etc...), sleeping terminology (40 winks, cat nap, siesta, tuckered out, dragging my butt, zoinked, etc...)

What worked best was to find about 10-20 phrases for each subject and then provide different examples.  The English teachers who came to the workshop asked really interesting questions and took tones of notes. A few weeks later, many of the teachers were greeting me using the practical English they learned in the appropriate ways.


  • Gillod
  • Veteran

    • 125

    • December 01, 2009, 07:29:17 pm
Teacher's Class?
« Reply #16 on: March 22, 2011, 07:12:33 pm »
So, I got stuck with a teacher's class this semester. At first I thought it'd be fun- We'd talk about the news, trade cultural stories, talk about life. But then we had a sort of pre-class just to meet and greet and it turns out that my English hopefuls speak 0 English. I don't even think they really know the alphabet.

Now, I don't mind teaching them, but. I work in an elementary school. I really only know how to teach English to kids and I'm afraid that I'm not really sure how to teach English to adults without being condescending.

Does anyone have suggestions for resources/activities etc. that aren't Breaking News English are are more suited for adults with nearly 0 experience?


  • Davox
  • Super Waygook

    • 497

    • February 05, 2011, 03:01:13 pm
    • Ilsan
Re: Teacher's Class?
« Reply #17 on: March 23, 2011, 07:20:25 am »
I'm not sure if culture will make a difference, but I know that I took Korean lessons for a few months at a hagwon with about 10 other English teachers and our Korean teacher spoke no English...She started pretty much the same way you would with low/no level Elementary students (flash cards, games, etc) and as fellow teachers we were a) not insulted (because we WERE beginners) and b) all picked up tips from her technique.  So maybe don't worry as much about being condescending, if you're sure of their level.


  • lion11
  • Adventurer

    • 64

    • July 19, 2010, 08:17:28 am
    • ansan, korea
Re: Teacher's Class?
« Reply #18 on: March 23, 2011, 07:44:04 am »
I agree with Davox.  If your students are really beginners then there's not much chance they will think you're being condescending.


Help! teaching ENGLISH teachers
« Reply #19 on: April 06, 2011, 10:52:17 am »
Greetings fellow Waygookers,

I'm going to start to teach a class to my high school ENGLISH teachers. The ones who attend are pretty advanced in their speaking abilities (and not to mention, are spelling and grammar nazi's). I don't know what to cover that would be beneficial to them. Everything I've thought of doesn't seem like it would be very useful to them, especially since they are at such a high level. I might do a lesson on (American) idioms, assuming they don't know most of them...

Other general ideas I've had is to pick random current events and have them debate on it. A friend mentioned that this would be difficult because I would have to do the research myself and educate them on it in order to get them speaking. (And world politics isn't exactly my forte.. wouldn't want to mis-educate them).

In my first class, I showed a short video clip (regarding RFID chips and how they're being implanted everywhere, from cards, to passports, and maybe even people in the future!) and asked for their opinion on this kind of monitoring. I quickly went over the two arguments, but when it came time for the English teachers to debate, they didn't exactly debate. The teachers basically agreed on one side and didn't talk much.... (I should have asked more questions to get them talking more, my fault)...

Anyhow, I know I'm over thinking, but what has worked and what hasn't worked for other people???? Any recommendations on how I could spark more conversation from the teachers?

Your feedback would be much appreciated!!!

Thank you.