Teaching One to One Teaching English one-to-one is a
Teaching English one-to-one is a different role for the teacher, however, most teachers will have done, or will eventually do this kind of teaching during their career. For some teachers it is a way to supplement their salary-their one-to-one classes are out of school hours and privately arranged, or offered directly by the school the teacher is working at. One-to-one classes may also be offered by the school the teacher is working at during normal school hours and the teacher is required to teach them (Riddell, 220). The reasons for students wanting one to one lessons are many and there are a number of advantages and disadvantages to one to one teaching.
Students may request one to one teaching on their own, however it must be noted that some schools usually give total beginners one to one teaching when they first arrive until their English is good enough to go in a class (Riddell, 220). Students who might be preparing for an exam sometimes feel they need more intensive practice and that is why they ask for one to one teaching. Similarly, students sometimes feel they want to have as much tuition as possible to improve their English quickly and therefore, they choose to be taught alone by a teacher (Riddell, 222). Another reason a student may choose one to one teaching is to improve their English for their jobs. Whatever the reason, the teacher needs to know what it is they are to provide for that students needs. A needs analysis form is helpful for one to one teachers because this will help determine what the student expects and needs from the course (ITTT unit 19, 15)
There are a wide variety of advantages and disadvantages to one to one teaching. For the students the learning is more intensive and geared towards their own needs. They are able to ask as many questions as they want, they can ask the teacher to teach them skills they need or want and they have lessons pitched at their precise level and desired pace. The one to one class also tends to cover more material and language than a regular class, therefore, progress for the student is faster and more visible (Riddell, 222).
The disadvantages to one to one teaching are that students cannot work with other students in the class so there is no pair/group work and no student-to-student interaction. This restricts teacher/students interaction which makes learning hard work for the student. Teaching one to one is very teacher-centered, therefore the teacher will need to prepare more because material is covered quicker than a normal class (Riddell, 224).
Teaching one to one can be difficult for the teacher, however, there are a number of things a teacher can do to make teaching one to one easier and more organized so that the student can benefit from this type of learning. Teachers should keep a record of all work done, this is particularly important given the flexible nature of the lessons in one to one teaching. Also, the teacher should keep notes on points that come up as they teach. This way, it is easy to come back to later. When doing speaking practice, the teacher can record the conversation and then replay the tape for correction work. It is important that there is a focus on pronunciation as it is easier to do so one to one. If the teacher is using a course book, they will need to adapt a lot of tasks as course books are mostly designed for pair and group work (Riddell, 226).
It is also important to consider seating plans in a one to one setting. The teacher and student should not sit across from each other at a table because this can be intimidating for the student, nor should they sit together on the same side as this is much too relaxed and casual. The ideal seating arrangement a teacher should adapt for one to one is with the teacher or student sitting on one side of the table, and the other person at the corner end of the table(student and teacher sitting 90 degrees from each other) (Downman and Shepheard, 11). Teaching one to one has a variety of advantages and disadvantages for both the teacher and student and should be considered seriously by teachers because while it is a different kind of role for many teachers, they will at some point in their careers teach one to one. If done effectively, teaching one to one can be very beneficial for the student, and also very satisfying and rewarding for the teacher because it is easy to monitor their students progress in a one to one setting.
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