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Problems with bilingual preprimary students 
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Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2007 4:38 am
Posts: 26
Post Problems with bilingual preprimary students
I am strugling with my preprimary English classfor many reasons.One of them is that We have a 3 hour class everyday and we are mexicans, so sometimes is just too much. The other thing is that they have " a lot of energy" and they are 30, it happens that somedays I feel overwelmed because of the discipline and because they don´t have enough vocabulary ..............do you have some ideas for me....help!!!


Thu Nov 08, 2007 5:40 am
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Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2006 10:46 am
Posts: 2130
Location: Nagano, Japan
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Wow! 3 hours every day. That's great! But I can also see why it might not be... :)

Are the lessons 45 minutes long? 50 minutes? And then 3 classes in a row?

I really like to have a set pattern for my children's classes. That way they know what to expect and what is expected of them. I would probably break the 3 hours up into 3 different classes. The first hour would be vocabulary, new target language and reading, the second hour would be communicative activities and the third hour writing/spelling.

The middle hour is the games and activities portion to burn some energy, hopefully solidify some of the vocabulary and language use. The three sections may overlap a bit but by keeping them separate I can focus and so can the children.

You can even have different segments for different days of the week. Monday might be skit day, with one hour devoted to the students making and performing some roleplay activity. Tuesday could be presentations of pictures. Students draw a picture and then take turns telling the class about the picture. Wednesday is show and tell day ...

Do you have a weekly theme for vocabulary?

Do you have a set curriculum or course book you have to use? Are you free to do whatever?

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Wed Nov 14, 2007 9:01 am
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Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2007 4:38 am
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Hi !!! Oh god I may even cry, I absolutely loved what you wrote , I think those are great ideas of breaking the class, and try it to do it funnier and less heavy.However I been teaching this way for 7 years in a row now.
In Mexico , the more expensive schools are designed to be bilingual so it´s a 3 hours Spanish , recess and 3 hours English.
I do have a reading book(Well I have 3, so we have material trough all the year) and from this book we take out spelling, vocabulary, grammar, reading comprehension and reading obviously, but my problem has been the same for many years, the students get to preprimary with a low english level( in fact they have 1 hour of english everyday, in kindergarden) and for the time they come to me I have to struggle with the program, the students ,but above all ..........discipline!!!! because they start getting boared or distracted because it is a lot of time .

The school wants them to speak and write but I think is just too much, actually our books which are from Harcourt editorial are for native speakers instead of being for ESl............anyway this letter seems more as a complain(I´m sorry , but I appreciate your help)........thank you!!!


Wed Nov 14, 2007 10:16 am
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Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2007 11:27 pm
Posts: 8
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At the following link you will find a video library for K-12 foreign language teachers:
http://www.learner.org/resources/series185.html

The 4th one (Chicken Pox) shows a French immersion classroom in the states. Hopefully, it will give you ideas for your classroom. The teacher uses many techniques with his young learners and does a good job of explaining why he does what he does. I hope it inspires you.

Connie


Fri Nov 16, 2007 11:55 pm
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Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2007 4:38 am
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Thank you for your time, I ´ll check the site right away.............again thanks!!!!!


Sat Nov 17, 2007 1:24 am
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