domingo, 2 de junio de 2013

Occupational Health - health risks - EFL WORKSHEET

Escribí esta guía para mis estudiantes de la clase de ingles del pregrado en Salud Ocupacional de Uniminuto. El objetivo es adquirir vocabulario y desarrollar habilidades de lectura en idioma inglés sobre un tema técnico.

lunes, 20 de mayo de 2013

TEACHING TIP # 2 - Teach formulaic expressions

TEACH   FORMULAIC EXPRESSIONS – chunks of language

Teach and practice with students formulaic expressions or phrases that functions as
 units such as “How are you?”, “ I´m sorry”, “sounds great”, “guess what”, “from now on”,  ….  This make students  feel  comfortable and, as in Tip #1, it reduces students´ stress and anxiety when using the target language. Based on linguistic theory as well as  on  research on teaching / learning a second language  I suggest teaching formulaic   expressions explicitly:  introduce   chunks of language in meaningful situations , make  students aware  of them   and use them in the appropriate situations.  I´m not suggesting you make learning chunks language becomes the focus of your teaching. However, based on my own teaching experience,  I think vocabulary plays  a central  role in the process of learning a language as  grammar or functions do  and such, it is necessary to give vocabulary  the importance that current  methodologies and  teaching materials  have denied  to it.  In Folse´s words  “ the question in L2 vocabulary teaching has shifted from if we should teach vocabulary to when and  how  we should be teaching vocabulary as well as how much and which vocabulary we should be working with”. 

useful expressions

Excuse me ?
That´s great
Could you repeat that, please?
That´s good
I´m sorry.   What´s your name again?
Take care
What time is it?
Where is it?
Over there
tell lies
What does ______ mean?
That´s terrific
I don´t understand
Good bye
I don´t remember
See you
I don´t know
What happens?
How do you spell that?
All right
Hold on, please
I´m ready
How do I get to ________________?
I think…
Just a second
Just on time
Sounds great!
Don´t be siily
May I help you?
By the way
It´s great to see you
In fact
Do you like it?
What do you think?
What´s going on?
That´s too bad
Do you know?
What do you do?
It depends on …
That´s interesting
Wait for me
What about you?

Think About it
The lexical view to teaching English provides a rational for this practice based on a view of language. The lexical approach,   according to  Pawley and Syder ( cited by Richards,  2001), holds  that
only a minority of spoken sentences are entirely novel creations and that multiword units functioning as “chunks” or memorized pattern form a high proportion of the fluent stretches of speech herd in everyday conversation
More about 

In a New York Times´articule Ben Zimmer discusses pros and cons of teaching chunks of language 


Folse, Keith. Vocabulary Miths. Applying Second Language Research to Classroom teaching – University of Michigan, 2013. p. 28

viernes, 17 de mayo de 2013

ENGLISH TEACHING TIP # 1 - Use class commands

Use english to communicate with your students  as much as possible. In context where English is not spoken students are reluctant to use it and so the class becomes the only place where they have the opportunity to get in contact with the language.  Use class commands all the time, if you do it, students will learn, understand and use them. This practice reduce students´anxiety,  builts confidence and encourages  learners to take risks when using english.

Here are some classroom commands and its translation into spanish

Sit down (Siéntate)         Stand up (Levántate)          Have a sit (sientese )

Get up (Levántese )          Come here (Ven aquí)             Go! (¡Vamos!)

You can! (Tu usted  puedes)           Quiet (Silencio)         
Silence, please (Silencio, por favor)

Listen (Escuchen)            Listen to me (Escúchenme )          Listen up! (¡Escúchen)

Pay attention (Presten  atención)        Excuse me (Disculpe)

Please, take out your pencils (Por favor, saquen sus lápices) 

Please, bring me your book (Por favor, tráeme tu libro)

May I go to the bathroom? (¿Puedo ir al baño?)

May I go to the restrooms? (¿Puedo ir al baño?)

Can you repeat it again? (¿Puedes repetirlo otra vez?)

Write (Escriba)                Copy (Copie)             Don’t copy this (No copie esto)

Please (Por favor)       Thank you (Gracias)                You’re welcome (De nada/)                

I’m sorry (Lo siento)        Raise your hand (Levanta la mano)    

    You’re next (Sigues tú)

Open your notebook (Abra su cuaderno) 

    Close your notebook  (Cierre su cuaderno) 

Open your book on page # (Abra su libro en la página #)

Think about it 

The Total Physical Response (TPR) approach to english teaching provides a theoretical phramework for using commands. In this approach emphasis is placed on developing students´ basic communicative skills and vocabulary through the exposure to the target language by means of using commands to direct student´s  behavior . In a typical TPR class the teacher issues commands to a few students first, then perform the actions with them. Next, students perform the  commands alone. As students master basic commands they are introduced new ones.

According to its creator, James Asher, this method of teaching is directed to right-brain learning             "drawing on work by Piaget, Asher holds that the child language learner acquires language through motor movement - a right-hemisphere activity"*


Richards,  Jack.  Approaches and methods in language teaching. Cambridge language teaching  Library.Cambridge University Press, 2001. p. 73 -79