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Creating a debate for a class that is weak in english.

 
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sweetrevenge



Joined: 24 Dec 2013

PostPosted: Sun Apr 06, 2014 10:06 pm    Post subject: Creating a debate for a class that is weak in english. Reply with quote

Hello, last week my coteacher complained that I'm not being interactive enough with one of my english classes. Personally, I think this is a baseless claim because the class I'm teaching isn't very strong at english and doing a debate would be literally impossible. Last class, I barely got through a Direct Object lesson and I'm lucky one of the girls pays attention in class to answer the practice questions. However, I'm on their payroll so I'll do whatever they want. Any advice?
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le-paul



Joined: 07 Apr 2009
Location: dans la chambre

PostPosted: Sun Apr 06, 2014 10:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

get them to choose the subject and let them list pros and cons (on the white board, talking, writing a list or what ever).
If they can support their idea with 'because...' they get a point.
Team with most points wins.

Example

What is best summer or winter vacation?

summer is best because
i can go swimming.
i can eat ice cream
i can...

you get the idea...


('comparing and contrasting' is infinite in terms of subjects)
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sweetrevenge



Joined: 24 Dec 2013

PostPosted: Sun Apr 06, 2014 10:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
get them to choose the subject and let them list pros and cons (on the white board, talking, writing a list or what ever).


This is a really good idea and very doable. If they don't know how to say a word, I could easily let them use google translate. I think I'm going to create a powerpoint with instructions and then let them take it from there.
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le-paul



Joined: 07 Apr 2009
Location: dans la chambre

PostPosted: Sun Apr 06, 2014 10:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You could also give them a few keys phrases on the board to help out (eg 'It can', 'it could' etc. depending on their level). They then just have to complete the sentence with their own lists (this is why it pays to give them time to prepare a list and for some reason, i found kids love writing lists...).

If you want to get them all excited, split them male female and debate which are better, boys or girls Laughing

Anyway, bon chance!
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le-paul



Joined: 07 Apr 2009
Location: dans la chambre

PostPosted: Sun Apr 06, 2014 10:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

oh, and by the way, dont be disappointed of you fall flat on your backside with this, its probably not your fault.

Koreans are very, very bad at critical thinking and often have a hard time 'debating' - especially kids.

Just a little warning...
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SeoulNate



Joined: 04 Jun 2010
Location: Hyehwa

PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2014 1:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

try actually engaging them in your lessons...

http://www.auburn.edu/~nunnath/engl6240/lessonpl.html

Also, dont use debate with low level English learners

try a modified fishbowl method instead
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Stan Rogers



Joined: 20 Aug 2010

PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2014 1:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bad word debate using all the swear words they can think of. Most creative insult combination wins.
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Chia Pet



Joined: 23 Jun 2013

PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

SeoulNate wrote:
try actually engaging them in your lessons...

http://www.auburn.edu/~nunnath/engl6240/lessonpl.html

Also, dont use debate with low level English learners

try a modified fishbowl method instead

If you think your arrogant little post was educational or helpful to the OP, I feel sorry for your students.

Anyway, debate is a trend that is widespread in Korean ESL now. It probably gained popularity because it seems like a way to get students to talk AND get them to prepare for standardized tests (practice supporting a thesis statement). The parents may eat up the hype, but for most students debate sucks as a conversation springboard. There may be a few competitive students who like it, but I doubt you'll find any in a low-level class.

Tell your co-teacher to come up with just ONE lesson plan that he/she thinks is a good example of what he/she wants, and use it in the class. If he/she refuses to do that (perhaps giving you a response like SeoulNate's post), go talk to the vice-principal or something. You're being put in an unfair situation.

Debate Rolling Eyes
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Hokie21



Joined: 01 Mar 2011

PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Get over this obsession with Google Translate. It's complete garbage and does not accurately translate between English and Korean.
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isitts



Joined: 25 Dec 2008
Location: Korea

PostPosted: Fri Apr 11, 2014 6:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

le-paul wrote:
get them to choose the subject and let them list pros and cons (on the white board, talking, writing a list or what ever).
If they can support their idea with 'because...' they get a point.
Team with most points wins.

Example

What is best summer or winter vacation?

summer is best because
i can go swimming.
i can eat ice cream
i can...

you get the idea...


('comparing and contrasting' is infinite in terms of subjects)


+1
Yeah just start with really simple opinions like above...or even like, "Which do you like better? Dogs or cats? Why?" Opinions like that are not quite debate, but more of a pre-debate in that they get the students to say what they think on topics that are not very confrontational. And you can work your way up from there to more debate-worthy topics and do the whole debate formula with rebuttals and everything. Once they've been doing it for a while, the students can think of their own topics to argue over.

Mind you, I did this with high schoolers. You didn't mention what age group you're working with.
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Moldy Rutabaga



Joined: 01 Jul 2003
Location: Ansan, Korea

PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2014 9:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think Le Paul's advice is good. My own experience is that even weaker students do better if given lots of advance time to prepare. You might announce the topics (dogs or cats / summer or winter) well ahead of time and give students class time to prepare their presentations, making sure that you arrange teams with opposing or different positions.

This sounds kiddy, but it even works with university students: anyone who asks a question after the presentation to challenge the speaker gets some chocolate.
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