I work for a local language school, and teach a mix of adult general English classes and exam prep classes in the evening and children’s classes on the weekend. The different kinds of classes require a range of techniques and teaching styles, and give me a lot of variety in my work.
Of all my classes, I enjoy the kids classes the most. Kids work and study better when they’re having fun, and I’ve always been able to relate to kids and keep them entertained. Over the years, I’ve slowly evolved my own style of teaching, one which can best be described as ‘eccentric’. Here, then, is a typical class that I teach.
Children like set routines. They feel more secure when they know what will happen next. That’s not to say you can’t insert some variation into your classes, but it’s easier to teach kids when they know what they’re expected to do.
My opening routine is always the same: the monster of the day. For the first class with a given group of kids, I draw a vampire version of myself. For classes that I’ve already taught I get the kids to make suggestions. Hence, monster hamburgers, monster babies, zombies, monster rabbits, monster toilets, and so on. Occasionally, I’ll introduce some new vocabulary that you won’t find in the standard young learner course books: ‘cannibal’, for instance. For more advanced kids’ classes, we’ll have a discussion on how best to kill a given monster, the monster’s favourite body part and any other habits the monster might have. The point is to use the language that kids want to use, that they normally use on a daily basis in their own language.