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Where are the laziest students?
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dmb



Joined: 12 Feb 2003
Posts: 8397

PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2003 8:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I do indeed work at training centre where the students are forced to attend class. Last week when all the students failed the end of course test for the second time. I informed them that if they failed it again then they would lose their jobs. The answer "GOOD" Is this lazy?
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guest of Japan



Joined: 28 Feb 2003
Posts: 1601
Location: Japan

PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2003 8:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dmb, yes they're probably lazy, and judging by that answer, they are frustrated too.

Thanks everyone, particularly John and KEnt for your words of wisdom, and also for not hanging me out to dry for my many typos in my post. Sorry, I was in a hurry this morning.

I had a little luck today. One of my classes contained boisterous and loud students. Usually this is a bad thing, but it was wonderful in this case, because they were loud and boisterous in English. As long as I don't put too much attention on them (as the Japanese teacher I work with does, and who is also the head of the English department) they should be effective role models for the class.

Incidently, my favorite students are the sincere ones who just can't do it.
Mark
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12751
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2003 2:44 pm    Post subject: Best and worst Reply with quote

Dear Mark,
" Incidently, my favorite students are the sincere ones who just can't do it. "
They're my favorites, too - but they also make you feel the worst. Go figure.
Regards,
John
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leeroy



Joined: 30 Jan 2003
Posts: 777
Location: London UK

PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2003 3:20 pm    Post subject: Feeling de-motivated by unmotivational students Reply with quote

I'm sure there are cultural differences and attitudes to learning which may make some nationalities seem "lazier" than others - but I'd agree with other posts that the individual student's motivation to learn really is the number one factor.

A while ago I was teaching evening classes, where most of my students would come for a 3 hour lesson straight after a day at work. It finished at 9pm, and most of them would be getting up at 6-7am the next day. Perhaps unsurprisingly, they weren't exactly "animated".

I initially made an effort to "up" the tempo of the class, introducing mingle activities, games that involved moving around, and once or twice got them out into the "real world" to do field project type things. I really tried to leave out too much grammar, go easy on the photocopies and make the lessons as fun and varied as possible. My reasoning was that by doing this I would infuse some enthusiasm into the class. Hell, it had worked with the morning classes.

Suffice to say it didn't work with this one. An exasperated student sat down with me (after running up & down three flights of stairs, interviewing 15 people and making a poster) and explained "It's nice you try to make interesting for us but we very tired! I think better if we can just sit, chat and sometimes do from book. Boring is OK, because we too tired for do interesting." So after that, we did. We certainly didn't blaze any trails, the lessons more than once verged on "suicidally boring", but hey, it was what the students wanted.

The vision of a class of enthusiastic, motivated (and punctual) students eager to learn, communicate and improve their abilities is not always fulfilled. Perhaps the moral is that "there is only so much a teacher can do".
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Sunpower



Joined: 22 Jan 2003
Posts: 256
Location: Taipei, TAIWAN

PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2003 8:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good point Leeroy!

I'm off to do a 3 hour evening class tonight as well.
The people that I'm working with tonight have already spent 9 or so hours at work today. Sometimes it can be pretty tough for me to get their attention.

I know that a lot of them just want to listen to a native english speaker talk and they are content to just sit there and maybe take notes - a lot don't. A lot of them also seem to prefer a lecture style lesson - but this is impossible for me. Many of them aren't interested in doing even the smallest role plays. Since it's a 3 hour lesson, I want them in groups practicing dialogues or working on tasks but some nights I really feel guilty about having them do too much because they're so tired.
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arioch36



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 3589

PostPosted: Fri Apr 18, 2003 1:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Leeroy,

Well written. I have had the same experience. Some classes the students are just too tired to do the creative things that we, as language teachers, feel we should do.

The classes i hate most are company classes where the students just don't want to be there. I don't teach many of these. I taught a class for Chinese high school teachers. Chinese high school teachers must be in the classroonm at 7:30, and leave the school at 9:00 at night, six days a week. They had no real desire to work hard at learning english. They were happy to do some book work, and have a chance to be normal people and just talk to each other. I quickly gave in, because they are not allowed to have a real life.
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TEECHER



Joined: 23 Mar 2003
Posts: 47

PostPosted: Sun Apr 20, 2003 7:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The laziest students? Yes, they are out there. As I have only taught in China, I have no idea where the laziest ones are. My only observation is that any student may need "meaningful reasons" to learn any given subject.As my students intend to travel to Canada this spring, they feel quite motivated to learn English, as I have told them how difficult the smallest tasks are for me here in China, not knowing the language. Sunpower, I was never as gifted a student as the one you have who puts his head down and sleeps through classes, while still geting 100% on his exams. However, I do have a sister {with PHD} who held a 90% average through eight years of university....all the while missing classes. {I still love her despite this}. Different students have different motivations and vastly different levels of intellect. It may not be possible for a teacher to be "all to every student". One can only hope to do their best as a teacher. Kent K, after eight years of university, my sister went off backpacking for a much deserved break. With her knowledge, dedication and sense of humour, she would have been a great ESL teacher. She could have made some great contributions, as do many backpacker/teachers who have much to offer. Actually, I think perhaps Sunpowers student is just nodding off in class until the day comes when he too gets a chance to travel and broaden his horizons. Isnt that what some of us here are doing? Separate the men from the boys? As we know....most boys never grow up. {and some of them are even teaching ESL!!!!} Separate the women from the girls? Well, there just isnt enough room on this forum for that debate. Talk soon ,
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12751
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Sun Apr 20, 2003 7:33 am    Post subject: Neverland Reply with quote

Dear TEECHER,
" As we know....most boys never grow up . . ". I don't think anyone ever grows up; we all just get older. In fact, only yesterday in the paper I read about an old priest who was asked what he'd learned after so many years of hearing people's confessions. His first reply was: " Nothing, absolutely nothing ". But then he amended that by saying " No, there IS something - no one ever grows up ". Peter Pan lives.
Regards,
John
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psychedelic



Joined: 11 Feb 2003
Posts: 167
Location: China

PostPosted: Sun Apr 20, 2003 7:51 am    Post subject: Laziest students Reply with quote

The laziest students are definitely in South Korea, and they're the biggest complainers too!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Kent F. Kruhoeffer



Joined: 22 Jan 2003
Posts: 2129
Location: 中国

PostPosted: Sun Apr 20, 2003 7:54 am    Post subject: follow-up to Teecher Reply with quote

Hello Teecher:

Good points you made. Please don't get me wrong; I'm not really anti-backpacker. I believe everyone deserves a fair chance to pursue their dreams and ambitions; with or without that backpack. Cool

In my closing comments at the bottom of page one of this thread, I was merely suggesting that the ability to motivate a group of lazy or unruly students may be an acquired skill.

No doubt; it's not the most important aspect of being an effective EFL teacher, but it is one aspect to consider in the discussion at hand.

Had she chosen the EFL option, I would have been proud to sit in your sister's class, by the way. I'm not nearly as 'stuck up' as some people think I am. Razz

Best wishes,
keNt

PS: Johnslat wins the "Avatar-of-the-Month" prize Exclamation Very cute, John.


Last edited by Kent F. Kruhoeffer on Sun Apr 20, 2003 8:40 am; edited 1 time in total
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12751
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Sun Apr 20, 2003 8:19 am    Post subject: Love me, love my avatar Reply with quote

Dear keNt,
Golly - I'm overwhelmed by this unexpected honor. First, I'd like to thank my parents - without their guidance and loving care in rearing me, I would have never chosen that avatar. Then, many thanks to all my friends and colleagues, who supported my choice through thick and thin. When the nay-sayers ridiculed my chances of capturing this award, they stood by me and encouraged me. And finally, of course, my students, without whom I would never have opted for the winning entry. I accept this prize in all humilty, and dedicate it to ESL/EFL teachers everywhere.
And keNt, please send the check and statuette to my address in the USA.
Bless you, bless you all.
Regards,
John
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Kent F. Kruhoeffer



Joined: 22 Jan 2003
Posts: 2129
Location: 中国

PostPosted: Sun Apr 20, 2003 8:30 am    Post subject: you betcha! Reply with quote

Dear Johnslat:

The check's in the mail. Now would you please be kind enough to let that poor boy go to the bathroom? He's been waving that hand for hours, and nobody's that smart! Very Happy
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12751
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Sun Apr 20, 2003 8:38 am    Post subject: knotty problem Reply with quote

Dear keNt,
He can wave until heck freezes over. Nobody, but nobody, leaves my classroom once the lesson begins. I'll tell him what I tell my other students: Tie a knot in it because you're not going anywhere.
Regards,
John
P.S. Pretty clever of you to be able to mail that check without having any address to send it to.
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Kent F. Kruhoeffer



Joined: 22 Jan 2003
Posts: 2129
Location: 中国

PostPosted: Sun Apr 20, 2003 8:52 am    Post subject: no problemo Amigo! Reply with quote

Dear John:

I sent your check to the following address: Let's hope it gets there safely!

Mr. John S. Lat
EFL Guy-At-Large
Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
ATTENTION: (look for the wet floor)
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TEECHER



Joined: 23 Mar 2003
Posts: 47

PostPosted: Sun Apr 20, 2003 9:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

WELL, Whether we actualy make our points here or not, what will the difference be in a hundred years? Myself, I think it is a grand way to spend a Sunday afternoon. Ciao for now.
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