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ABCs - Alphabet Resources or Ideas?

Started by NEWS NOW in Teaching and Methodology. Last reply by ddeubel Sep 19. 76 Replies

I guess the alphabet is our bread…Continue

Tags: children, abc, kids, phonics, reading

Top 5 Game

Started by susie silver in Teaching and Methodology. Last reply by ddeubel Sep 17. 14 Replies

Hi David Maybe its obvious to some but I'm not sure how to play and I also want to create a top 5 game as well. What is the point of it. There are always 5 answers. Do the students guess according to…Continue

Tags: 5, top

Use of L1 in the ESL classroom

Started by Evanthia Pogiatzi in Teaching and Methodology. Last reply by ddeubel Sep 10. 4 Replies

Hi people, i'm doing a research on whether is good for English language teachers to use the L1 of the students or the target language (English) when teaching in the classroom. So i would really…Continue

Tags: teaching, methodology, language, l1

Stories to inspire and teach. Share yours.

Started by ddeubel in Teaching and Methodology. Last reply by ddeubel Jun 16. 80 Replies

 I'd like to share in this forum and would like others to share, short stories that might apply to education / teaching and that will inspire. I believe stories and a narrative are powerful, whether…Continue

Tags: hodja, tao, zen, professional_development, storytelling

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About

It's About The Learning NOT the Teaching

I would like to share one of the ideas that most invigorates and informs me as a teacher. The idea of "Student Created Content" or SCC. I borrow the term from UGC or UCC, "user generated/created content" that is the motor of Web 2.0 and the internet.


What is SCC?

It is an approach that tries to simplify the teaching/learning process and equalize the power relationship that exists between teacher/learner (much like CLL - community language learning does with its focus on the teacher as a language "knower". ). It also is a way of instruction that completely focuses on the student's world/context. That all language learning must start from that focal point, no where else. The teacher models and then the students create the content and re-practice based on the teacher's modeling as an "expert".

I believe we focus too much on "teaching" without giving due attention to "learning".  We need to turn things upside down and get out of our tired and worn delivery methods. SCC as an approach does that. Those interested might 
listen to this podcast- an excellent summary of the teaching/learning divide.

It is an approach. There is no "one way" but rather some basic tenants to be followed. These are:



1. The students create the content (worksheets, words, sentences, topics, dialogues that will be used for instructional purposes). It is a complete "Personal" approach to language instruction.
2. It is REAL. Not about anything artificial or from a textbook. It is about the lives and times of the student and teacher. The classroom situation is no longer treated as an artificial "studio" but rather as a meeting place for real events, for real talk about real things that interest the students.



3. The teacher is also a learner and does what the students do. In this fashion, the teacher is not all knowing but a participant. In this "low level" way, the power barrier that exists is diminished and better learning occurs and better modeling of the language.


4. It is an inductive approach. It is a wholistic approach. The students are first engaged and prior knowledge elicited on the topic. Only then, are the students asked to create the content and practice the language first modeled and encountered holistically and in context.


5. It is simple in design.There is not a lot of planning for the teacher. The focus is on instruction, the art of "how" and not "what". Teachers using an SCC approach don't have to spend time planning, making materials, preparing. Their energy and reflection goes into developing their teaching skills as they happen, during instruction. The students create the text and textbook.

 Use / download my open source coursebook, free to all teaching (please pass / share it around).  The forward is an essay about SCC and the book lessons all focus on the SCC approach. 

Get some of the SCC worksheets  
HERE and start mucking about with your students. But let's look at one example. Also,
 search on EFL Classroom 2.0 using "scc" to see many other examples.


Travel Talk Lesson


The lesson delivery is always the same.


1. The teacher uses a photo/picture to elicit student response. Student prior knowledge is primed as they try to communicate with the teacher. The students talk about "the teacher's world/life".
In the example below - Travel Talk, the students ask the teacher about his/her last vacation. It is always about "reality".


2. The students are asked to create the content. This can be in the form of words, questions, brainstorming, drawing etc.....
In this example, they choose items of a dream vacation. The materials are created simply so that the student can easily add the content based on
their life experience and knowledge.



3. Using this content the students in small groups or pairs, practice with it. The teacher sets up the target language but from the nature and simplicity of the materials, this is usually self evident.
In this example, the students ask about each others dream vacation using the question prompts. The teacher monitors and even participates with students.


4. A student or students become the teacher. Step 1 / activity 1 is repeated but this time a student is the teacher.
In this example, a student is asked about their last vacation just like the teacher was to begin the lesson. The teacher is off the stage and to the side as the language is reviewed and used purposefully.


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