Coursebooks and materials - Resource Books Part 1


The next item that we're going to consider is the use of resource books. There are many different types of resource books available and within those books there tends to be a general pattern and typically the resource book pack will come in a three book series and typically that three book series will be in the form of the student book, a workbook and a teacher's resource book. So for example here are those three books for this particular series called ?Total English? and in the student book the type of information that we can gain from here is the actual background to the teaching points themselves plus some additional information in terms of short worksheets and so on and so forth and tape transcripts at the end for listening activities, which these days often come on a CD rather than cassettes. So within the student book itself what this will give us is the actual information for the teaching point. The workbook will often give us activities that are very useful in any ESA lesson for the study phase of the lesson and the teachers resource book will not only give us some additional background to the actual teaching point but it often gives activities that are useful for the activate phase or in the ESA lesson. So the three books contained within the book series basically will provide us with all the information that we need to know for the actual lesson content itself activities to do during the study phase and activities to do in the activate phase. Now quite often some of the activities that are suggested here may not be culturally suitable or we may not have covered the exact teaching points as they have in the book so very often the activities taken from the work and the resource book would need to be adapted or changed in some way.

Below you can read feedback from an ITTT graduate regarding one section of their online TEFL certification course. Each of our online courses is broken down into concise units that focus on specific areas of English language teaching. This convenient, highly structured design means that you can quickly get to grips with each section before moving onto the next.

In Unit 20 the topics of Common problems situations are introduced, the short unit addresses the possible problems and solutions in First lessons; Warmers; Different levels; Large classes; Usage of native language; Reluctant students, and Difficulties with listening texts. First lessons have two categories of classes: new, or existing groups. Whichever group it may be, the first lesson should be used to encourage and build rapport between students, learn more of students and their motivations, and guage their abilities. Warmers, or warm-ups, are to prepare and motivate students in to learning English at the start of class. Similar to the Engage phase of ESA, ideally linked to the Study phase. Different levels or mixed level classes, the teacher can try to deal with the situation by using different materials or tasks that are appropriate to the students' levels. Pairing stronger students with weaker ones is also a strategy, as with not doing anything and allow the students to find their level within the class. Large classes present the problem of classroom control and participation. Utilising worksheets instead of whole-class activities, or pair/group work can maximise student involvement. Usage of native language could be a problem but it is rarely done for the sake of being disruptive, but for trying to communicate or helping with explanations. This can be minimised by using activities that are appropriate levels for the students so that they can understand instruction in English without needing explanations in their native tongue. The teacher should also only respond in English, and encourage students to only use English too. Reluctant students may exist in classes due to cultural, intimidation, confidence, or motivation issues. Teachers can utilise pair work or controlled practice, even role-play to create a safer environment for reluctant students to build confidence and encourage participation. Difficulties with listening text often occur as students prefer, or understand better, when English is spoken 'live' instead of from recordings where the can only rely on their listening. Teachers should help students familiarise with recordings in order to improve their listening skills towards English spoken from various sources.

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