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    • Join Date: Aug 2005
    • Posts: 2
    #1

    Question What/Be Like?

    As part of my training, I had my first exposure to "real" students last evening, and to say it went poorly would be a masterstroke of understatement. I was trying to get the class to write down what they were like as a small child and what they're like now. One of the students asked me what "be like" meant, and I was unable to answer him without using the target language. Any ideas?

    Francis (UK)


    • Join Date: Jun 2005
    • Posts: 52
    #2

    Re: What/Be Like?

    Quote Originally Posted by francisosh
    As part of my training, I had my first exposure to "real" students last evening, and to say it went poorly would be a masterstroke of understatement. I was trying to get the class to write down what they were like as a small child and what they're like now. One of the students asked me what "be like" meant, and I was unable to answer him without using the target language. Any ideas?

    Francis (UK)
    Deja vu, Francis, deja vu!!! Welcome to the club. My first class was at least as bad as yours, quite possibly, monumentally worse. Note the most important thing here. You'll get better.

    I don't know what level your students are/were so it's kind of hard to suggest something concrete.

    Here's a good rule to follow. MODEL MODEL MODEL

    Take two students. Masato and Morba

    How is Masato like Morbo?
    1) they both have black hair.
    2) they both have blue jeans on.
    3) they ...

    Even use staged ideas. put a pencil in each person's right hand.

    On a wider scale, did you present yourself first as a model or create a fictitious person and do some befores and afters on that person? You just can't beat context and modelling. Those are the essences of language teaching.

    Maybe you started with too hard a concept. There's a great deal that can be learned and taught with real objects in real time.


    • Join Date: Jun 2005
    • Posts: 52
    #3

    Re: What/Be Like?

    Francis,

    See also,

    https://www.usingenglish.com/forum/s...ad.php?t=14932

    to find out that you're not alone and for some further advice from folks who've been there, screwed up, got better, screwed up some more, stumbled a bit, but turned out okay.

  1. Casiopea's Avatar

    • Join Date: Sep 2003
    • Posts: 12,970
    #4

    Re: What/Be Like?

    Welcome, Francis.

    One of the students asked me what "be like" meant, and I was unable to answer him without using the target language. Any ideas?
    What about? Tell me about your childhood. What were you like as a child? That is, what did you do for fun, want to be, like, dislike, think about the world. What were you like? I, for example, loved to run wild in the forest behind our house. I wanted to be a teacher, I liked cake, disliked cookies, and thought the moon was the sun's shadow. That's what I was like. What were you like? And what about now? What are you like now?

    Here's an example Activity:

    PART I: students are in groups of three

    Tell Me About Your Childhood: in other words, who were you?
    Answer the questions below, then use the answers
    to write a short paragraph in the space provided below.

    1. What did you do for fun?
    I used to __________.

    2. What did you want to be?
    I wanted to be __________.

    3. What did you like to eat?
    I liked __________.

    4. What did you dislike?
    I disliked _________.

    5. What did think about the world?
    I thought _________________.

    Paragraph => When I was young, I . . .

    PART II: students switch groups

    Tell Me About Your Life Now: Who are you?
    Answer the questions below, then use your answers
    to write a short paragraph in the space provided below.
    1. What do you do for fun?
    I __________.

    2. What's your job?
    I'm __________.

    3. What do you like to eat?
    I like __________.

    4. What do you dislike?
    I dislike _________.

    5. What do think about the world?
    I think _________________.

    Paragraph => Now I . . .


    PART III: students work alone

    Me, Then and Now
    Using the paragraphs above, tell us about yourself. What were you like when you were young? What are you like now? Are you still the same person? If not, why, and if so, why not?
    Paragraph => When I was young, . . . Now I . . .

    DISCUSSION: students speak out, followed by Q and A from the floor

    All the best,


    • Join Date: Aug 2005
    • Posts: 2
    #5

    Re: What/Be Like?

    Hi All,

    Many thanks for the feedback; it's all gratefully received. I think my biggest error was assuming that the (pre-int) students would recognise forms like this. As a consequence I didn't prepare a context/concept check questions in case they didn't understand. BIG mistake. I won't (I hope) do that again.

    Thanks again.

    Francis.

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