This training is a learning experience for everyone, including the trainers. I thought delivering the one-month teaching methods course was hard enough, but this one is tougher. It's intense and challenging, in terms of language and ideas. One of the difficulties is that the trainees aren't used to the participatory approaches being used. Previous trainings they have attended (except for mine) have been very theoretical, delivered through lectures and text books. In our workshops they are required to be active, both physically and mentally.  What's more, we only have a short time to mould them to fit the training ways, and to consolidate some key ideas.

I noticed yesterday that some of the participants were having trouble knowing what they should be doing at various points in the lesson. The steps and activities are clear, but they aren't clear about their own role. For example, when asked to discuss in groups, some write away individually; when asked to check answers and make notes, some chat. when asked to listen and look, some take notes. I came up with a useful strategy - reminder cards - which I display if I think they're wandering away from the task. They proved to be very successful this morning, reminding participants of what to do without confusing them with more English. Now they can't confuse my classroom instructions with the content of the session! The exclamation mark, meaning "key point", was most effective and by the end of the session I was more confident that everyone had heard and noted the key issues in their workbooks. No, the one on the right doesn't mean "kiss" as Edie thought, but "silent activity".
Picture
Lesley & Edie with the new REMINDER cards.
Paul
13/10/2009

Nice - loving the iconography!

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