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42 Introducing the teacher and making a "communicatively focused" class
One of the scariest things can be the first day of class. But this can also be one of the most invigorating for a teacher. If you are prepared and at the same time, flexible -- you'll have a great time getting to know your students and also allowing them to get to know you. It is also essential that you keep things light and in this way, create a very relaxed, warm environment from the get go. Leave the rules and classroom procedures and a well designed (ordered) lesson for the next time. Not the first class.
A great way to introduce yourself is to produce a ppt and have the students ask you questions based on the photos. You can also just bring in some pictures and things about yourself and let them hold them up and ask you! They will ask -- Who is she? Where are you? etc.....put up question words on the board for a prompt or in your ppt proper. Also, VIP 9 Very Important Point) !!!! When a student asks you a question - ask and echo one back. This is a great teaching technique and it allows you to assess that students language level. If they ask, "Is she your mother?" . Answer and then ask , "What is your mothers name? " or "Does your mother like spaghetti too?" or anything about her/his mother.
Another good activity is for the students to interview each other in English. They can also take on a famous person or characters personality for this. This activity reviews all the basic questions regarding; name, age, job, family, likes etc..... Here is a ppt (see the second part) which can be used for this. Get the students echoing like you and asking the questions back to each other. Also, try to get them extending and asking follow up questions if possible.
There are several other icebreakers and other ideas which I'll save for the next time. But one other one might be to use the basic questions about "favorites" to interview each other. A good list of conversation questions can really help. But you'll have to edit many of these and see my uploaded examples. A good idea here is to put students in pairs. Then after a set time, they change partners and form the questions in the 3rd person. The students have to remember what their partner's favorites were -- not that easy!!!! As always, at the end, do a briefing and review the material in some open fashion.
Also see this presentation about assessing the oral proficiency of students.
Have fun introducing yourself to your students! That's the key, the first day.
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