Sunday, February 19, 2012

6th week reflections

6th week reflections

This is to be the first week in semester two at our school. Feel happy to continue what I have started this year and trying to make a good use of the things I learned in the course. 

Back to the course in this week we had to: 

Post at least once addressing ONE of the two the following questions: 

1. You can use many of the same techniques to do a better job of teaching small classes as well as large classes. Look at "Teaching Large Classes" and "Using Technology in Teaching Large Classes." Think about project-based learning, WebQuests, and some of the ideas in "Enhancing Learning by Engaging Students" to help in your response. What techniques and technology could you use to make your classes more interactive, and especially if you teach large classes? 

2. PowerPoint is very commonly used in teaching, but it is rarely used interactively. Watching the screen is not interactivity. Read "Best Practices in Presenting with PowerPoint" from the UO's Teaching Effectiveness Program to find ways to turn a lecture into an interactive experience for students. The sample PowerPoint may also help you in your response. 

I posted about teaching large classes as I experience it 

In this week discussion one important topic for me is introduced, it's about teaching large classes. It's a challenge. I know that because this year I'm facing it. This year I teach 3 classes (35, 31, 26 students). This is seen to be normal in my school. We usually have this number of students in every class. Most of the English teachers in my school look positively and find it a chance for them to improve their interpersonal skills as they try different ways to get to know each student as an individual through their work in class or their lives outside of it.

I believe teaching large classes is a challenge, but it can also offer many opportunities for you to improve your teaching and to make it more enjoyable and rewarding for you and your students.

Your students can also benefit from being in large classes. When there are many students in a class, they can share many different ideas and interesting life experiences. This stimulates the students and enlivens those parts of your lessons where students can discuss and learn from each other. During project work, students can learn to share responsibility and help each other, as well as to listen, to have patience, and to express themselves within a diverse group of people – skills that will be valuable for them throughout their lives. This also brings variety and speeds up the work.

But what is the best way to teach such classes?. There is no “best way” to teach large classes. You must as a teacher develop the approach that works best for you based on your teaching style, the characteristics of your students, and the goals and objectives of your lessons and curriculum.

Making technology work. In the article (Teaching Large Classes) at it shows some examples of time-saving, effort-saving technologies proven to be effective in teaching, especially in assessment.

 For me using technology makes me more relax, few effort is done while students enjoy learning. I used to show my students some clips in English about related to their learning. I noticed that the large number class watch with interest to track their understanding I asked them some questions and then they discussed them in groups. By this you make a large class feel small. 

then i posted about 
In teaching in general the teacher's role is to guide and assist students as they take on more responsibility for their learning. This is totally true in large classes. Moving responsibility for learning from the teacher to the student is needed. One way to do this is give the students an explicit list of "learning objectives" so they know and keep on truck learning. In my classes which I consider large I do such thing when teaching. Important thing to put in mind is that students need to learn to self-assess their understanding. But how I can help my students to do so?

Are they potentially able to do the learning?
There are many factors effecting here: 

Self-affimation – the learner’s view themselves as effective learners and the teachers provide them with feedback to that effect;
Personal meaning – the learners are able to find personal meaning in the learning. That is, the learning is relevant to them;
Active learning - the learners are active in the learning, whether that activity is physically doing something (as for concrete learners) or intellectually doing something (as for abstract reflective learners).
Collaborative – the learners are able to collaborate with others in the learning process and not to view learning as an isolating experience;
  The teacher needs to give attention to the part of the planning to see that the classroom processes conducive to optimal learning. The classroom and general school climate needs to encourage students to take risk and try out new approaches. This will interact with the student’s willingness to participate or engage in the learning. Among other things, this means that the learners:
  • need to feel safe;
  • attempts to solve problems need to be respected;
  • unconventional approaches will be rewarded;
  • will feel confident that the lecturer knows where to pitch the challenge for them – that is not too hard or too easy or too repetitive;
  • will work on real problems with personal relevance to them and is therefore relevant; and
  • work on challenging problems that provide opportunities for creative thinking.

 Second create interactive PowerPoint :  

Using PowerPoint in teaching as I experience helps the students to be more:
·   attentive
·   add more enjoyment
·   add variation
·   save time
·   get students' interest & add  fun to lessons

I usually use Microsoft PowerPoint in teaching and find it very helpful.  In the show I have created I introduced the story ''The talkative Turtle'' with 9 slides. At first slide, I introduced the picture of turtle then pause (time for students to guess the name) after that the name comes written. At second slide introduced the birds the same as the first slide. After introducing the characters of the story the story begins with the use of pausing and letting students to guess the missing words in the story.


  1. Dear Yasir, I just loved your blog and your experience sharing! Great work!
    My week was not easy as well - it's carnival time here in Brazil. I guess you can imagine, no one is willing to work...


  2. Hi Dear
    It's the same with me, -_-
    starting to work again from long holiday.
    Hope things goes easily for you

  3. Hi Yasir,

    I have to tell you that i completely agree with you on every point made in your week 6 blog reflection. Teaching large classes can be a challenge and I have the same situation like you, regarding the number of students in one class. I have from 36 to 22 students, from class to class, and I teach 9 different classes. So this week will definitely help us with making such classes more interactive.
    Regarding the Power Point presentations I agree that interactivity is not just sitting and watching the slides go by, but to get the students involved, and luckily we have learned how to create such presentations this week, like Jeopardy game.

    Good luck to you Yasir and to your students in the forthcoming second semester.

    Best regards!