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teaching various levels in one class 
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MES-Zealot!

Joined: Thu Aug 10, 2006 5:14 pm
Posts: 117
Location: Adelaide Australia
Post teaching various levels in one class
I'm frustrated with one of the classes I teach. They are Japanese kids staying here in Australia for 3 months ~ 2nd year High School, and one student is average, one is way above average and the others are below average shy kids. Needless to say, if I try and accomodate the below average students the others are bored out of their minds! And if I aim lessons at the average then the below average don't understand. Does anyone have any ideas??
My plans are to do a few lessons about making telephone conversations, going shopping, banking and visiting the doctor etc.
All suggestions will be gratefully received!! :D


Wed Sep 13, 2006 4:53 pm
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MES-Addict

Joined: Mon May 28, 2007 12:58 am
Posts: 42
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Hi,
I know it is a really late answer but I'm quite new here.
I have the same problem at primary school. In a class of 25 (as if having so many students is not difficult enough) I have three or even four different levels in the same class. The average level can follow the book we use but some students have problems with it, they cannot learn the vocabulary fast enough and have problems with the simplest structures. Then, of course, there are those students who can finish the book in half the time and get bored in class.
I always prepare extra activities for both the fast and the slow students. One group to practice what they should know and the other to do more difficult activities.
I don't know if it is the best way to do it, but what else can I do?
During the oral activities all of them do the same and have to participate but with the writing activities the levels are so different that it is quite difficult to teach these groups.


Sun Jul 08, 2007 9:34 pm
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MES-Zealot!

Joined: Wed Jan 24, 2007 8:57 pm
Posts: 135
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A couple of ideas for different levels:

Develop a library of 'books' with different levels. There are a lot of studies that show that free reading alone can improve language skills. The Reading A to Z website has books from one word to a page to 5th/6th grade native English (and Spanish and French) level.
Oxford Story/Reading tree and Springboard readers are also highly recommended.

Do a lot of oral work. Focus on a grammar structure and ask a lot of questions using that structure. Be sure to repeat both positive and negative statments so students can get a lot of repetitions. Allow the slower students to answer with one or two words and require full sentences from your faster students. Also stop frequently and ask the students about the grammar you used, varying the level of difficulty depending upon the level of each student. Constantly pointing out grammar points and how they change the meaning of the sentence is much more effective than having them memorize rules.

This may seem too teacher-centered but requiring output from very shy students can be detrimental if they don't feel confident. Amazingly 'practice` speaking and writing the language are not what a lot of students need to improve their skills.


Tue Jul 10, 2007 10:57 am
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