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The QUIET class 
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Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2006 4:07 pm
Posts: 9
Location: Korea
Post The QUIET class
Do you have one of those classes where you are asking questions but you get better responses from the wall than you do from your students?

If you find yourself in this position next time you could try what I do. This works best for younger students and almost certainly not with adults!!

If i have asked the class the same question about 362 times and still no response i have everyone stand up. Then have one person start walking around the class and the rest of the class forms a line and follows them. then i have that first student speed up a bit so they aren't just slouching around. Then i ask my question again. As soon as one student answers the question (right or wrong) they can sit down. Quite quickly you will have received a verbal response from everyone in the room. After that the students respond much more quickly to my questions.

if the question you are asking can have more than one answer, don't let the students repeat what another student has said.

What do you do for your quiet class?



Sun Jan 29, 2006 11:36 am
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I really like that idea.....I might have to try it! Most of my classes have very genki kids so I really don't have this problem but I do have one or two classes that should be more Genki. With my two less genki classes I normally just start asking questions to the students who look like they are tired or trying to hide from me (I even say "oh..let's ask the sleepy student" and everyone giggles including the sleepy kid and they wake right up). I like to put the kids on the spot if they are starting to tune me out. I also rasie my voice very loud so they will raise their voices louder when they are repeating stuff. And if a class is really acting up then I tell them "Be good or no game" and that always snaps them back into place! :lol:

Sun Jan 29, 2006 2:39 pm

Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2006 4:07 pm
Posts: 9
Location: Korea
Anonymous wrote:
"Be good or no game" and that always snaps them back into place! :lol:
Oh yeah, i love that one! nothing works as well as that does.


Sun Jan 29, 2006 4:06 pm
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Site Admin

Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2006 10:46 am
Posts: 2130
Location: Nagano, Japan
If I can't get a response I usually model some possible answers. If I still can't get a response...

Everyone stands up and I start my question blitz. I ask one question at a time and the students raise their hand and answer to sit down. (They don't really appreciate this.)

The good thing about this exercise is usually the better students answer first and they continue to listen and try to answer (in their heads.) I generally ask harder questons in the beginning working down to simple yes/no questions at the end. So you have students listening to 30+ questions where you can do loads of review of structure and get them used to answering.

Or used to standing up :smt017 I'm not sure.

I also find it's helpful not to ask obvious questions because students sometimes feel it's hypothetical. If you do ask too simple questions, then you should have some sort of gesture or indicator for that.

- Mark

Build up! Be positive! Teach hard!

Thu Feb 16, 2006 11:39 pm
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Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2006 1:21 pm
Posts: 8
Another method that works (if you want to throw in some variety) is to have one column stand up. Ask a question to only those people. If they answer, they can sit down. When there is only one student left standing, have all the students on that person's row stand up. keep repeating column, row, column row. You will get every student to answer.

Tue Mar 07, 2006 9:07 am

Joined: Sat Jan 21, 2006 8:03 am
Posts: 71
Location: Athens, Greece
In order to get my students to practice asking and answering questions without tuning out I use a soft rubber ballthat looks like a round purple hedgehog. I ask my question eg. "Where do you live?" and the student who catches the ball answers and asks the same question and throws the ball to whomever he chooses. After 4-5 students have answered the same question I clap my hands and get the ball back and start another round with a different question directed at a different student. We go on until each student has had the chance to answer at least one question. In this way I revise at the beginning of lessons the things that I have taught so far.
In case I don't have a ball I simply crumple a sheet of paper into a ball and use that. However. they enjoy the real thing more

Fri Mar 10, 2006 4:10 am
I love this idea! Another variation you can use to get a quiet class to participate more is to just use a game (not as a reward, but as a lesson). The games I'm talking about are games that actually teach the vocabulary, grammar or speaking skill you're trying to teach on a particular day. If you go to, you can find a bunch of these types of games that can really get even the quiet classes participating in your lessons.

Kind Regards,
Shelley -- Fun English Games for Children

Sat Aug 12, 2006 2:22 am
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