Friday, December 13, 2019

A Fantastic Teaching Demonstration by My Student Teacher




An English class filled with engaging activities to help students master the sentence pattern

As Ruby's cooperating teacher and teaching mentor, I enjoyed showcasing my teaching practices and lesson planning strategies for her. We often discussed her lesson plans in English, and I offered my advice before carrying it out in class. This teaching demo went quite well as planned. The professor, my principal, and colleagues also said many good things about her during the class discussion session. 

1. EMI

Student teachers must be able to use English as a medium of instruction in teacher selection. We cannot overemphasize how important it is during teaching demonstration and job interviews.  

Ruby did a good job in terms of EMI today. She delivered her instructions fluently with only a couple of pauses. The students were able to comprehend and stay on track, too.  

2. Task-basked and Backward Design

Throughout the whole class, the students were busy performing tasks collaboratively. They had to answer questions, discussed the order of the dates, interview each other, and so on.

All the tasks are connected, with the previous one serving as scaffolding for the next one. For example, with the interview worksheet completed, students are able to talk about who they asked and what they said in English. 

3. Differentiation

The students were divided into five groups based on the scores of the midterm. Each group was made up of three English levels of students. Based on the difficulty of questions or tasks, Ruby called on Seers, Knights, or Villagers accordingly. Everyone would have equal participation and contribution in class. 

4. Authentic Context

Some major school events of KMJH were selected, such as the opening ceremony, PTA, science competition, and so on for the ordering task. The idea is to create a need to use the sentence pattern in real-life situations. 

Besides, she also invited some teachers and students to make the materials more intriguing by recording their voices. Then, out of three choices, students had to take a guess the birth month of that person. Everybody was laughing upon hearing "噴水雞肉飯" in Taiwanese from Billy. 

5. Visually Attractive

Ruby is creative in making her PowerPoint slides appealing. There are usually many cute cartoon icons with animation effects. The layout is clean and organized, too. 

With all the good things about her demo today, I do have some suggestions to make it better though. Once again, teacher selection in Taiwan is an extremely severe competition. To stand out among numerous candidates, I think there are three things she can improve on:

1. Transition

When transitioning to the next phase of lecturing or task, we want to make our instructions more clear and also get the students ready for it. We can wrap up a bit of what just learned and hint what's coming up next as well. 

2. KISS

We need to show off fluent English in teacher selection but tend to make it lengthy and difficult to understand. Keep it short and simple. Use verbs to tell what exactly your students have to do. By doing so, it will also diminish the teacher talking time. 

3. Pronunciation and Intonation

Pay attention to those words you tend to mispronounce. If you come across a judge who is as picky as me, that can mean a disaster to you because I can't stand an English teacher with horrible pronunciation. After all, he or she's going to impact an awful amount of students throughout the whole career.  

To maximize Ruby's student teaching experience, I often encouraged her to think outside of the box and try different things. When I did workshops or teaching demonstrations, I would also invite her to come and observe. On top of that, she immersed herself in all the extra "burden", including the Korean sister school's educational visit, host family training workshop, Readers' Theater Competition, to name just a few. May she take in all these wonderful experiences and have a killer job interview in teacher selection. 

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