Teaching Videos

This series of videos documents a recent lesson (4/14/2010) with intermediate ESL learners in the lab portion of an academic preparation course which focuses on speaking and listening skills. In the videos, the camera angle is focused on the teacher to protect the privacy of students – it does not accurately reflect (in a visual way) this instructor’s view of the importance of BOTH students and teachers in the learning exchange. Normally, I wander around a lot more in the classroom to see what students are doing, but I knew the mic wouldn’t pick up the audio, so I stayed close to the camera for this session. As it is, the audio is very soft. You’ll need to turn it up to the max to hear students.

VIDEO #1 – LESSON INTRODUCTION

I always put on the board the day’s “game plan”. It lets students know where we are going, helps them navigate lesson transitions, and keeps me on track!!!

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Here are the lesson plan and handouts for this class – download at this link ->  LessonPlanHandouts – or view online

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VIDEO #2 – WARM-UP
CONVERSATIONAL TURN-TAKING

Students try to get to class on time, but there are several who ride the bus and it gets them to class a few minutes late, so I always try to put something at the beginning that lets us warm up, but also isn’t high stakes… Here we do the Q->SA+EI strategy to build conversation. I’ve been reading Teaching ESL/EFL Listening and Speaking by I.S.P. Nation and J. Newton (2009 – Routledge – NY) for specific strategies and found this one to be really helpful – The sections on Meaning-focused Output: Learning through Speaking and Listening (pp.4-6) and Learning through Pushed Output (pp 116 & 120) were very useful.

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VIDEO#3 – DEALING WITH SPEECH ANXIETY

Students have a final oral presentation coming up at the end of the semester and they are nervous about it.  One of the students shared a book with me the previous week on speeches, and I wanted to make sure I used something from it. This section touches on dealing with speech anxiety and also begins the connection to the main lesson that follows this section – the last rhetorical style that we study in this course – cause & effect… So we look at the following… What are the causes of stress before a class presentation and how can we soften their impact?

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VIDEO #4 – REVIEW OF PREVIOUSLY STUDIED RHETORICAL STYLES AND CONCEPT MAPPING TOOLS

This section begins the grand review of all the styles and their associated tools we have studied up to this point – as a stepping stone to the last style – cause & effect… I was really happy to see them making connections and being able to apply various academic scenarios to the different tools and styles we have used so far in the course.  At the end of the review, I gave them a scenario like this – Imagine you are going to a political science lecture and the instructor is going to talk about the differences between the Democratic and Republican parties.  What concept mapping tool could you use to help you take notes? I wanted to also do an informal assessment, but forgot to do it – I will definitely incorporate it the next time. I created a set of cards for each student – containing one card for each style. My intention was to give them a scenario and ask them to show the corresponding card so that I could get a quick visual of who was getting it and who wasn’t. We did it verbally here – but next time I really want to try that.

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VIDEO #5 – INTRO TO CAUSE & EFFECT – FISHBONE DIAGRAMS

Now we shift into the lesson proper on cause and effect – introducing the use of the fishbone diagram for note taking and info processing – first using material and language familiar to them (stress discussion from earlier in the lesson – What causes stress?). This is the basic pattern we have used throughout the semester: start with a familiar example and then move into the academic use….

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VIDEO #6 – APPLYING FISHBONE TO AN ACADEMIC TOPIC – THE CIVIL WAR

Now we start the process of using fishbone in an academic context – the chapter on the Civil War. Regrettably, I had a Watergate moment with the video at the end of this session – The camera ran out of time before I realized it – so the video is missing the section at the end where we finish filling out the fishbone diagram using the listening preparation paragraph in the book. After that we do the vocabulary and background preparation, and then they work on the computers using the textbook software to reinforce the vocabulary before listening to the lecture. This is about a 15 minute segment missing from the tape.

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VIDEO #7 – CUES & LISTENING WITH A PURPOSE

We went over the cues for cause and effect. I try to review these each week at some point with them and we are incorporating this into their final presentations.  In this particular unit, the preliminary work with the fishbone really captured the main points of the lecture, so I thought it might be a good time to work on their awareness of the power of  “listening with a purpose”.  So I had them preview the comprehension questions, instructing them to listen for the information as the lecture progressed. They listened initially, then determined the information gaps… and then listened a second time.

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VIDEO #8 – LESSON WRAP-UP – SUMMER PRACTICE WEBSITES – RANDALL’S ESL LISTENING LAB

This video is dark to protect the privacy of students – so you will only hear the audio portion. Homework was assigned to help them fill in any remaining gaps in understanding. This segment was meant to reinforce their awareness of their own ability to learn independently – to monitor their own learning progress and to use the tools available to them to fill in any remaining gaps of knowledge. The last part of the class session was exposing them to online resources that  they could use over the summer when classes are not in session. The previous week, we looked at a vocabulary website that they can use. This week, a listening lab. Each week, I’ll get them to work in a different site. They access the websites through WebCT. As students work in the websites, I go around and listen to individuals recite the assigned poem, pointing out any pronunciation issues in preparation for their final recitation at the end of the semester.

4 Responses to Teaching Videos

  1. Dianne says:

    Love these! You’re a natural! I can hear the audio just fine. I love the student participation. They’re on it!

  2. Cheryl says:

    You hooked me in! The videos are great but the lessons are so organized and easy to follow. Even though you can’t see the students, you can tell that you have them engaged and make them feel comfortable with the class. Great job Suzanne!

    • suzshaff says:

      Thanks Cheryl!!! Maybe next time I can get their approval to be videotaped – I do think it would be a more complete picture to see their reactions and work in progress! Thanks for taking the time to look and give feedback!

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