How to introduce yourself

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How to introduce yourself

Post by henryworldus » Tue Mar 18, 2008 5:06 am

I am teaching English in China. At the beginning of the class, traditionally we spend some time getting to know each other. The Chinese students from freshmen to juniors seem to follow a self-introduction formula: My name is X. I am from Y (her or his hometown). I want to improve my English in this class.

The self-introduction is short and at the end, I still don't get much idea about who this person is.

Do you think self-introduction is necessary, especially in the classes with more than 30 students? Should I provide some requirements before they introduce themselves? (It will be boring and unfriendly.) Are there any short, interesting self-introduction activities?


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Self Introductions...

Post by eslweb » Tue Mar 18, 2008 1:31 pm

They're all taught that formula... I am xx, I come from China and am 19 years of age.

Here are some ideas to make it more interesting:

1. Put some questions in a bag and every student takes an idea out of the bag. If you're short of ideas, just take a look at my IELTs speaking guide:

2. Ask students to tell you a secret about themselves

3. Ask students to tell you 2 true things and 1 lie.

4. Ask students to tell you something they love / hate

5. Ask them to introduce each other.

Hope it helps.


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Post by Sally Olsen » Tue Mar 18, 2008 7:45 pm

I always introduce myself first and have a photo story to go along with my talk. I try to make it interesting with stories of my family who have done interesting things and places I have been. I also give a short talk on how I learned or will learn their language. This gives them an example of how to do their introduction. I write everything on the board as I talk so they can use that as a basis of writing their own or have a short version printed out to hand out.

You can also use introductions to get the students used to speaking in small groups. Divide the students into groups of four. I do this by rearranging the desks before they come into the room into circle of four. They introduce themselves to their group of four and ask each other questions. Then two of the four change to another table and introduce their new friend to the next two. I hover and try to get to know the students from what I overhear or sit with a group for a few minutes and ask questions myself.

At the end of three or four changes of groups - perhaps 3 to 5 minutes each time, I sum up the problems that I have heard in their speech, give them an outline of the course and show them how it will cover their errors.

Usually students want to know the requirements of the course in the first lesson as well and I give them detailed course requirements, resources and so on and let them ask questions after they have talked it over in their groups. The type of questions you get will often help you decide what to emphasize in the course.

I like to get them to write in that first lesson as well to have a baseline example of their writing so answers to further questions that will help you organize the course would be good for this section - how many years have you studied English, have you studied abroad, what do you read in English, how do you learn new vocabulary and so on.

This will give you a level for the individual students along with your brief observations on their speaking so that you can pick out the good students who will aid you in bringing up the level of their peers. You can distribute these good students around the classroom to lead the groups of four for the next class.

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Re: How to introduce yourself

Post by Aysha Siddiqui » Mon Apr 14, 2008 9:29 am

I think if you plan something a little more interesting would be better. Something like making the kids draw a picture of themselves with their families and add bubbles for likes, dislikes and what hopes they have from the new class. they could do it on flip charts and later display or present whatever suits the mood of the class.[/quote]

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How to introduce yourself...

Post by Janisse » Sun Apr 05, 2009 9:26 pm

Hello all!
Of course you have to introduce yourself to your new students at the beginning of the school year. It is the first impression your students will get from you and it is most of the time the one they will remember. The way you introduce yourself will impact on the first perception your students will have leading to a positive or negative attitude toward you.

At the beginning of this school year, I tried a new way to introduce myself and to have my students talk about themselves. Instead of just saying “I my is…I’m from…” I did a more original introduction. It took a longer period of time that I had expected, but I think the results worth it. To introduce myself, I did a kind of pictures riddle with my name. My name is Janie, to picture my name I showed on the overhead projector a first image of the singer Ja Rule (picturing the first syllable “ja”) and a second image of a “knee” (picturing the second syllable “nie”). I did the same thing with my last name and the students had to guess it. Then for homework, they had to make one poster with pictures and images to show their name.

Then, during the same period, I conducted a “time capsule” activity. The students had to answer to 10 questions on a sheet of paper. For example, what is your favorite TV show, who do you think will win the next election, what are you strengths, etc. I collected all the sheets and I put them in an envelope, which represents the capsule. I told the students that we will only open the “time capsule” at the end of the year to see if their predictions were rights and if the still agree with what they wrote. What I did not tell them is that after the class, I personally read all the information. It allowed me to know more about my students.

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Hello all!

Post by robertgao » Wed Nov 25, 2009 7:45 am

There're many other effective ways to get to know the students. Chinese students are mostly reluctant to speak, so in the first lesson you don't have to force them to speak. You may use the questionair.

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Post by sylvia.gilbert » Sat Jun 26, 2010 8:48 am

Thanks to All of you. All posts were nice & useful.

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Post by mgrima » Thu Feb 17, 2011 2:49 pm

I have a great introduction activity for all ages groups. It’s called 3 truths 1 lie. You start of by introducing yourself and then writing 3 truths and 1 lie on the board. You then ask students to guess what is true and what is false. Students love this. Make sure you write interesting things about yourself. Depending on the level you can ask students to use a variety of verb tenses. For really beginner students I give them the sentence structure and they have to fill in the word for example I love..., I hate..., I eat..., etc. Give a variety of examples and encourage students to be creative. They can show you there sentences and you can tell them to elaborate or to be more original. When students are finished ask them to come to the board and either present or write their sentences on the board and have the rest of the class guess what their lie is.

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Introduce yourself...Only in English!

Post by melgaut » Thu Feb 17, 2011 3:07 pm

Good question...How to introduce yourself in an English class...And how your students can introduce themselves to you! In an intensive English class, other languages than English should be strictly avoided. I like the idea of 2 truths 1lie...It is fun, they get to know you !!And because it is entertaining and they want to know the answer, I'm sure they will forget that it is in English! Otherwise, you can make a presentation about you: students are always interested about ''the teacher outside the classroom''. Students are usually interested about travelling so you can present pictures from a trip! You will get their interest! I think we should always answer question that the students have about you. Is it that dramatic if they know how old you are? Now... how the students can introduce themselves other than : Hello, my name is Aaron and i'm 8 years old.... BORINGGGG! They all know each other already. I would like to have some ideas. Should they prepare something? Group work? Oral presentations?

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