Coursebooks and Materials - Use of Visual Aids


The next idea we're going to consider is the use of visual aids and visual aids can include some examples such as real, objects, which we call realia, the use of pictures and photographs and also the use of models. So let's consider some of the ideas surrounding the use of visual aids. Well, why are they useful? Well, first of all the use of a visual aid can reduce teacher talk time. It's very much more simple just to show a real object than to try to describe it so that we could just ask the students ?what is this,? and they would say ?this is a pen,? rather than trying to actually describe it. Again if we were trying to show examples of fruit and vegetables rather than to try and describe them why not use an actual model and this is going to be much more visually stimulating than me trying to just actually describe them. One of the things that that additional visual information does, studies have shown that by seeing things it actually aids memory. Another thing that these visual aids can do is they can actually stimulate discussion by having some form of real object or photo etc. then we can actually stimulate a discussion in some way and they can actually be used to elicit language. An example might be the use of a photograph. So I might show my students a photograph, something like this, and make sure that they can understand what it is, elicit language surrounding possible scenarios from that photograph and so on and so forth. It is quite important however when you're using a photograph of this type that you make sure that it is big enough for everyone to see. You don't want an example like this where we say okay what do you think of this and there's so much information there that the students can't actually see what it is that you're referring to. So make sure that pictures can be seen by everyone and finally, in terms of the use of visual aids although we can buy certain objects and we can cut things out of magazines and newspapers and so on, lots of ideas that we can come up with for visual aids, we can actually make ourselves. So anything that you don't have, have a go at actually making it.

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.

There are different categories of English learning experiences, each with their own unique advantages and challenges. Some common groupings are beginners, Young Learners, one-on-ones and Business English learners. Mixed classes can also be multilingual or monolingual in nature. Beginners come in different varieties and even different levels, depending on how much experience with the language they have. The most difficult beginners are those with no knowledge of the Roman alphabet. When teaching beginners, teachers need to speak slowly and praise often without over-correcting. They need to make sure that the beginner has enough language understanding to comprehend basic instructions. Beginners could be adults or children, which will affect their motivation, previous experiences, and behavior in the class. Teachers perhaps need patience above all else, as they may want to move too quickly through material. Young Learners are children up to the age of about 15, and this is the group that I teach. There are obviously still differences even within this age range. However, all children need consistent, fair discipline and proactive class management from the teacher. They need their self-esteem to be kept high and lessons that fit a shorter attention span. These students are more prone to problems like peer pressure or attention seeking, so the teacher must be crafty in recognizing faults in the classroom dynamics. In addition, children benefit from a lot of repetition and drilling more than adults. Teaching one individual student is becoming more popular now, but it creates some limitations. Obviously, peer work is out of the question. Also, the student can usually work quicker, so the teacher needs to have a lot of material on hand in case they finish everything early. When working one-on-one, some activities are better than others, such as reading books or articles together, conversation on topics of interest to the student, listening to music, or recording and playing back the student's own production. The advantage here is that everything can be catered to one student's level, interests, and needs. It is important, however, that teachers still target all skills and provide some structure, even if a student \"just wants to talk.\

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