Observation is considered a critical method of learning in the development of the continuous professional development of a teacher. The reason is that on most occasions, the teachers tend to learn from the other teacher. The teaching methods that the teachers use are different and are also based on different theories. Although the teachers use different teaching methods, some work with some students, and others fail. The paper draws observations from two classes in the semester. The first is a grammar class, the second is a vocabulary class, and the third is an academic writing class. Since discussing every aspect gained from the observations in all two categories is complex, the paper will focus on the principles and techniques used in student engagement.
The purpose of choosing the two different classrooms is to gain exposure to various styles and teaching methods. It is essential to mention that each class was interestingly distinct from the others. In all two types, the students and teachers carried on with the specific contents of the lessons.
The first class was selected from class two, which involved teaching hamburgers, French fries, cola, and fried chicken to the first graders in China. The video involves students in first grade at a primary school. The classroom comprised approximately 50 students (Mikes Home, 2017). The style that the teacher uses is that of chanting. During the classes, the students are introduced to 4 healthy foods.
The second class selected for the discussion is class 3, which involved live-action English materials for adult beginners. An observation I made not mentioned is about what the course comprises. It is made up of 14 beginner students that speak Spanish (C.P.L.I., 2015). Some Asian females never took part in the class and, based on my assumption, were observers. The lesson, as introduced by the teacher, was about making an omelet. The tenses used in the video are past tense, present progressive tense, and future tense. Some of the main activities undertaken during the class include writing dictation on the board, performing action verbs by students, and demonstrating 17 vocabularies in front of the class teacher.
The second class uses the direct method whereby the interaction is both-sided. However, the interaction among the students is directed by the teacher. The task given to the students that they are supposed to interact with while completing it is practicing grammar rules. Unlike the other teaching methods, the students taught directly do not have freedom of liberty (Orfan, Noori, Hashemi & Akramy, 2021). The reason is that there are set boundaries within which the students will stick as directed by the teacher.
The third class was a T.P.R. classroom. T.P.R. classrooms are characterized by the teacher interacting with the entire class. The teacher speaks first then the students are supposed to respond non-verbally (Larsen-Freeman & Anderson, 2011). Under the setting, the students learn from watching one another perform tasks together. However, under the T.P.R. setting, the students do not communicate using the language that is being targeted (Astutik, Megawati & Alina, 2019). The reason is that the students do not show their understanding through oral methods but through command actions. The unique feature that differentiates the third class from the other two is the minimal interaction among the students.
Teacher Feedback and Evaluation
In class 2, the students were discouraged from demonstrating their knowledge of the target language for communication but requested to use it in a well-structured manner. The method used in teaching is the direct method that requires the students to correct their pronunciation and grammar mistakes whenever possible. The evaluation that takes place in class 2 is both written and oral. The reason is that the participants are requested to give an oral answer and participate in the blackboard dictation writing.
The manner that is used to make corrections in the T.P.R. class can be considered to be unobtrusive. It is evident in the video that whenever a student makes a mistake, the teacher repeats the command while acting it out. Some humor should be added to the target language. The teacher can determine whether the students understand based on examining their actions (Lecture notes, n.d). The approach helps reduce any discouraged and stress while pointing out mistakes. Formal evaluation can be conducted in class three though requesting an individual student to perform a series of actions.
Teaching methods that are currently available are multiple. However, the distinction among the methods is brought about by the level of engagement of the students and the teaching technique the teacher uses. The discretion of selection of the process to be used during the study is usually selected by the teacher. Because I observed two classes that use various techniques and levels of engagement, it is clear that it has helped me gain the best approach to teaching the English language. It is the observation that gives the link between the pedagogical theory and the teaching method in real life.
Astutik, Y., Megawati, F., & Aulina, C. N. (2019). Total Physical Response (TPR): How is it used to Teach EFL Young Learners?. International Journal of Learning, Teaching and Educational Research, 18(1), 92-103.
C.P.L.I. (2015). Teaching English (ESL / EFL) to High Beginners — Live Action English Materials. Www.youtube.com. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HaQrSyNRJDk&list=WL&index=8&t=888s
Larsen-Freeman, D., & Anderson, M. (2011). Techniques & Principles in Language Teaching. Oxford, NY: Oxford University Press.
Orfan, S. N., Noori, A. Q., Hashemi, A., & Akram, S. A. (2021). Afghan EFL instructors’ use of teaching methods. International Journal of English Language Studies, 3(5), 31-38.
Lecture notes. (n.d). Observation Report.“Model Observation Report 231.pdf.”