Teaching Tip - Ka-Plam!

Have you ever found yourself in a classroom with students who don't understand even the tiniest bit of English? Congratulations! You've most likely got a room full of motivated students who will give you their undivided attention.

But you probably figured out quickly that, in a situation like this, you need to use some inventive methods to get them to understand you.

If you're struggling to get your absolute beginners to understand you, try the tips below.

* Speak slowly (not louder!)
* Use only the basic sentence structures (subject/verb/object)
* Use words that are most common. For example, if you want to say cat, don't use the word feline.
* Skip the pronouns in the beginning, and instead use the names of those people you are talking about.
* Use a lot of hand gestures. "Do you mean up?" Raise up your hands to help the students understand the word.
* Use sound affects. You may feel silly, but if you are trying to tell them that something blew up, using the sound "Ka-Plam!" will get your point across!

By Michelle Simmons