This day enquires into the mind set behind the increasingly popular ‘student-centred’ approach to teaching. But, how can we apply this approach in the classroom? How can we translate this seemingly idealistic notion into practical teaching with realistic objectives? Where do we start? One way is to explore a particular selection of techniques that can form the basis of student-centred teaching practice. These techniques can be utilised by the teacher in every lesson without extraneous planning, and when used at opportune moments, they combine to encourage the long-term development of an active and student-centred classroom. The application of these techniques also appreciates and cultivates cognitive processing in students. This toolkit of techniques is inspired by humanistic approaches to teaching, which includes a consideration of social and educational psychology.
The choice of techniques that we use in the classroom can have a powerful impact on the communication that occurs in the classroom. They can enable the teacher to shift the focus from the teacher to the students and encourage more STT. These techniques encourage students to think and process, therefore helping them to be more responsible for their own learning. This part of the workshop will be divided into sessions covering, for example, eliciting, POP, CCQs and contextualizing. A focus on student-centred techniques for error correction including pronunciation correction techniques. These sessions will be practical and provide participants with opportunities to try techniques out as well as understanding the theories behind the techniques.
How the classroom space is used can strongly influence the effectiveness of a lesson and the learning taking place. Building on the sessions on techniques, this talk focuses not only on rearranging the furniture, but also reconsidering the positioning and movement of the students and teacher. This ‘Chameleon’ Approach to learning challenges traditional dogmas of the classroom, but offers many benefits relating to student engagement, behaviour management, classroom dynamics, collaboration, and of course learning. But, while we experiment with this approach we need to take a realistic stance and consider the limitations attached. Like the chameleon adapts to its surroundings, so does this approach need to adapt to your specific teaching context.
Many teachers are under an obligation to use a coursebook. This session looks into how the coursebooks can be used differently and in a student-centred way to match the students in your classroom rather than the generic student the book was designed for. There will be an opportunity to try out different activities based on coursebooks, as well as an opportunity for the participants to create their own activities based on coursebook units.
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