Any good advice for a newbie?

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Joined: Fri Nov 05, 2010 2:35 pm

Any good advice for a newbie?

Post by Elisayim » Sat Nov 06, 2010 2:20 pm

Hello all. I have just found out this website and especially this forum, that seems like a very good place to get information and tips for teaching etc..
What I would like to know is that how to get it started? I have never given any lessons, but I just finished my TEFL course and I'm excited about starting my new career as a teacher. I'm not a native speaker and currently I'm living in a country, where people aren't very skillful in English.

Can anyone give me some advice about how to start, especially with private students? I can find on my own a lot of materials to use as a worksheet or just as ideas for lectures, but what I do not know is how to get the first lessons through, when I have no clue what is the students skill level in English. In case I would teach private students, how can I make sure that I understand what is their level? Is there any level tests in internet, should I just start the lessons with conversations, come up with some interview-type questions...? And the hard part is of course that even the students don't know their level, so it is left to the teacher to find out.

I'm glad to get any helpful advice :)

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Joined: Thu Aug 12, 2010 4:15 pm
Location: Madrid, Spain

Hey Elisayim

Post by danielwelsch » Sun Nov 07, 2010 6:33 pm

The level isn't really important in private classes, I find.

It's more important in groups, where you might have different people of different levels all together.

Even if a person says they're "Intermediate" that means something totally different depending on the person, the country, etc.

The most important part of teaching for me is listening, accepting their reality, building rapport and being positive. I start new classes with a review of verb tenses (all they know, in positive, negative and question) and move on from there.

Good luck as a new teacher!

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Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2009 8:23 pm
Location: Austin, TX

New ESL teacher

Post by alawton » Mon Nov 08, 2010 3:54 pm

If you are teaching private classes I wouldn't worry about formally assessing the level of your students. After a few days you will get a feel of where they are at. If you are completely starting from scratch, and you have no text book, I would do the following: Pick a theme, present ten or so vocabulary words and pick a grammar topic to focus on. The theme can be anything from riding a bus to shopping at the store. If you have true beginners you can get as basic as presenting the articles with the nouns as your grammar focus. Whatever you do make sure to have a variety in the activities that you do. Do some speaking exercises, writing exercises and reading exercises each day. Good luck!

Andrew Lawton

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