Teach English in Xindian Zhen - Nantong Shi

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Teaching English to young leaners is an incredible opportunity to teach and empower, an opportunity to give young minds new concepts, vocabulary, and experiences. An instructor of young learners has an important job and is especially true for instructors of young English learners. One might argue that TEYL instructors have a considerable challenge and responsibility to help young learners as they seek English language acquisition. Teaching English to Young Learners covers a range of ages, specifically the ages of 5 through 13. Fundamentally however; a 5 year old’s needs, abilities, and interests are night and day to the needs, abilities and interests of a 13 year old. Therefore, the range of ages must be further divided. In the following, I will discuss the two groups of learners, Group 1 and Group 2, and will provide specific examples of possible lessons, as provided by Unit 5. The first group of learners is known as Group 1 and are students who fall into the age range of 5-9 years. These young learners require meaningful lessons and activities that are student-centered and require a significant amount of student speaking opportunities. Furthermore, because little people tend to be “wiggly” with short attention spans; an effective instructor will properly plan for and implement meaningful lessons that are concise, yet provide a variety of learning activities. For example, young learners require lessons that have multiple, short activities, allow students to get up and move, incorporate singing/dancing, and lessons that tap into creativity and imagination. According to Unit 2, the skills in which 5-9 year olds will have varying abilities included: concentration, abstract thinking, acquisition, memorization. (ITTT Administration Team, 2011) According to Unit 5, after thought and development, an appropriate lesson for Group 1 might look as follows: students will be shown cards that have colors on them along with a picture they can associate a name to eg. “Red=Richard.” Students will discover how the names match the color and then students are challenged to go through each color remembering the name that was associated with the color. Next, the instructor removes the pictures, but the colors remain and students are now challenged to come up with the name of the colors. Finally, students work on a worksheet that asks them to make word associations with the colors they just learned. (ITTT Administration Team, 2011) The second group of young learners is known as Group 2 and this group consists of students whose ages range from 9-13. Obviously there needs to be careful consideration by the instructor to create lesson plans and activities that will provide older students with appropriate language acquisition opportunities. And because this group of learners is older, an instructor can rely on the fact that, according to Unit 2; students will have more concentration, higher abstract thinking abilities, will learn consciously, and have higher memorization skills. The instructor will have more instruction/talk time and students, in general, will be engaged less by movement and activity, but in a variety of other ways. (ITTT Administration Team, 2011) A typical lesson for older learners in Group 2, according to Unit 5, might look something like the following: students will be introduced to drawn pictures of animals and will be asked to not only identify said animal, but spell the animal’s name. Students will also be asked to identify their favorite animal and if student’s are restless can even mime the animal. Next, the instructor will have students come up with various adjectives that describe the animal being discussed. The instructor will then read a story about animals and students are asked to envision the animals as described in the text. Finally, students take ownership of their learning by retelling the story in their own words, identifying as many animals and adjectives that describe the animals as they can. (ITTT Administration Team, 2011) Teaching English to Young leaners comes with a great responsibility to provide meaningful and age appropriate English acquisition opportunities. An effective educator identifies they age of the students being taught and understands that although young learners are defined as students ranging from 5-13 years, needs and abilities vary. Thorough engagement, teaching, and practice, all learners can develop a new understanding and grasp of the English language and have meaningful opportunities while doing it. Work Cited ITTT Administration Team (2011). Unit 2 Teaching and Learning. International TEFL and TESOL Training. February 18 2020. Retrieved from https://db.teflserver.com/eeap/index.php/units/#pdfviewer ITTT Administration Team (2011). Unit 5 Teaching Themes. International TEFL and TESOL Training. February 18 2020. Retrieved from https://db.teflserver.com/eeap/index.php/units/#pdfviewer