Teaching Village Rotating Header Image

Activities

games, parties, activities, makeovers of traditional games

Teaching Pronunciation that Matters (by Nina Septina)

Nina on guitar

Pronunciation is like an art to me, and I’ve always enjoyed it. It is like learning how to play guitar, where we have to figure out when to use different picking strategies or strumming patterns to produce the desired sounds. In pronunciation, we also need to use many different techniques and tongue positions in our mouth to produce the right sounds. Another similarity is that we’ve got to know when to change how hard or softly we should hit the guitar strings when playing a song. The same thing happens when we have to figure out how hard or how soft we should stress certain syllables in words, or some words in sentences when speaking. Finally, there’s the use of rhythm as the main component that shapes the flow of the song, just as it also shapes the flow of the speech in pronunciation.
(more…)

Parking Lot Archaeology: An engaging angle on teaching academic English (by Ron Campbell)

Every car tells a story

“Every car tells a story; all you have to do is listen”

It’s become something of a cliché, but every teaching situation presents its own unique set of challenges. However, my challenge wasn’t all that unique – in fact, it was pretty well-worn itself. My students were falling asleep as I tried to guide them through science readings and lectures in preparation for the TOEFL.

What I’d like to offer you here is a brief review of a class project that seemed to catch my students’ interest and got them deeply involved with academic material.  This one simple exercise opened a wide door into helping students interact with abstract material and getting them to build a set of experiential and critical thinking tools that they could call on later when trying to understand and appreciate other technical topics in English.

(more…)

Lessons from the Japan Earthquake (by Masatoshi Watanabe)

The Great East Japan Earthquake that struck on March 11, 2011 directly impacted people living in Miyagi, Fukushima and Iwate prefectures, but it affected people all over Japan. Over a period of about a year, I did a series of activities with my junior high school students related to the earthquake. (more…)

12 Affective listening activities (by Juan Uribe)

It’s a great pleasure to share affective listening activities here at the Teaching Village. I call them affective listening activities because emotions are very present in the movement, suspense, and laughter they produce.  These activities also promote an engaging atmosphere that sparks creativity, enhances attention, and activates students’ memory. Last, they present alternatives to include pronunciation, intonation, and imagination through listening in our classes. These guidelines can be used with recorded stories, movies, and even with songs. (more…)

Teach Peace

‎It is no longer good enough to cry peace, we must act peace, live peace, and live in peace.

~Shenandoah proverb~

Since 1982, people have celebrated the International Day of Peace on September 21st. The theme for this year is “Sustainable Peace for a Sustainable Future.” Around the world children are working toward creating sustainable peace in a number of ways, both large and small. (more…)

Child’s play crafts that increase spelling skills (by Anna Musielak)

My spelling is Wobbly. It’s good spelling but it Wobbles, and the letters get in the wrong places. 

A. A. Milne 

English might be an easy language but its spelling is tough and complicated. The words are spelled and pronounced differently and there are a lot of exceptions to the existing rules. That is why it is important to make spelling activities exciting and fresh. We should refrain from dull drilling and making our students rewrite a certain words 10 times. Instead let’s make spelling colourful and fun so that even when kids write the same word 10 times they do it differently and they don’t get bored and discouraged. (more…)

Engaging young (and very young) learners with (basic) craft projects (by Anna Musielak)

Arts and crafts involve children simultaneously in activities promoting their personal development and in helping them to learn the language. While making things, children also make meaning. As they explore shapes, colours, textures, constructions, they are extending their experience and understanding of the world – and doing it through the medium of the foreign language.

                                                            Alan Maley

Crafting is my hobby – despite the fact that I am a very messy and clumsy person;) I find it relaxing and challenging at the same time- just like teaching kids! My interest in using crafts to teach English started with my daughter – now 5 years old. I wanted to make learning fun and memorable for her. Agnes collects a lot of “rubbish” which she likes to embellish and she just loves drawing, painting, gluing, cutting and folding which makes me very happy as it helps her develop her motor skills. As for me – well, it keeps me busy because I have to clean the mess she makes afterwards;).  I decided to use Aga’s interests to introduce some new English words and sentences and to make learning enjoyable. (more…)

Four Skills and Five Senses (by Anna Musielak)

Blog of the month
Two weeks ago the director of my school announced that the teachers should organize a “family” lesson. Kids could bring their parents, grandparents and relatives to accompany them on the lesson to observe how their little ones learn and interact. I have to admit – I was a bit worried and well… stressed out. I’ve organized shows and performances for parents and families and I’ve had teacher-parents meetings. But I couldn’t imagine how to have a lesson with parents and relatives observing pupils (who would definitely be stressed) and watching (and probably silently judging) me of course….I decided not to overthink it and as I didn’t have a lot of time to “prep” my pupils just do what I normally do hoping it would go well. (more…)

New song worksheets from Marsha Goren

In her previous post, Teaching Songs and Chants in the Classroom, Marsha Goren shared a set of worksheets she had created to accompany the songs on the first GiggleBellies CD. This morning, Marsha sent me a message and attached a new set of worksheets to go along with the second GiggleBellies CD. (more…)

EFL Teacher’s Kit for Surviving Kids (by Shelly Sanchez Terrell)

When I first began teaching very young English language learners in Germany, I went a bit insane! Kids climbed the walls literally and flew the paper airplanes I had actually thought would be a creative lesson plan. With 14 children running around and yelling, “Shelly Belly” I nearly quit.  At least they were using English, right? My extensive years of teaching had been to English speaking children who were much older and to English language learners who were in their teenage or college years.  I did a lot of research, because I love a challenge. The tips I learned are included in the Glogster below, which you can click and explore! (more…)