If you can use part of a classroom as your own or if you always use the same classroom, then find out about the possibility of displaying your pupils’ work on the wall. Not only does it give them huge satisfaction to see their poem, picture or poster on the wall it also provides a fun and interesting place to work in.
Your school will probably want to make the most of your presence. Being a native speaker you can bring a lot to the children. They may ask you to participate in an English Club or indeed you may want to develop some sort of club of your own. Using your initiative with both classrooms and clubs will be both a rewarding and stimulating bonus to the actual teaching you’re doing. Here are some ideas to get you started.
- Providing a space dedicated to English to motivate and inspire learners
- Enabling learners to work as a group in a non-threatening environment
- Investing time in your own development and language assistant experience
The English Zone or English Corner
- Try to start each session with a ritual so that they know they have entered into the ‘English Zone’. This is especially important if you are just coming into their normal classroom and teaching where their normal teacher would be.
- Make your classes distinctive from what they are used to by having a welcome song.
- If possible gather everyone into a circle on the floor to get them out of their seats. This may not be feasible given the seating arrangements you have but make sure you ask about the possibility of changing the seats or even room.
- If you can’t change the seats themselves then get the children to sit in different places.
- You need to really mark the beginning of your classes – this will help them concentrate on what you’re going to do.
(By the British Council – Teaching English)