Saturday, March 29, 2014 19 comments

Teaching Novel - Getting students to read

Salam and Hi.

I've tried a few techniques to get my students to read Step by Wicked Step:

  1. Get students to read alone and silently in class. They doze off easily.
  2. I read to them. They like it but it hurts my throat.
  3. Get students in groups. Carry out the 'Reading Circle' activity. 

Reading Circle using Step by Wicked Step

  1. In this activity, each member of the group take turns to read aloud each line/paragraph. 
  2. I normally ask students to read 5 of less pages per lesson. 
  3. Based on my observations, students are more relaxed in this activity. 
  4. I encourage them to act out certain dialogues by changing their voices. 
  5. They do not feel intimidated when reading with their peers in small groups. Their peers could help them in understanding what they read.
  6. The exciting part - I've never seen any students doze off in this activity :)
  7. After reading, give them the related exercises. To download the exercises, click at the respective links: Chapter 1, Chapter 2
  8. After completing the exercises, give the answer key to each group.
  9. Students mark their own work in groups.
  10. Teacher acts as a facilitator.


Reading Circle in action (with 5 Imtiaz)







Friday, March 28, 2014 1 comments

Using idioms in essays

Salam and Hi.

I received the following questions through email:

Assalamualaikum  teacher. May I know how to put the idioms in my essay and made my essay more interesting though I use the simple simple sentence. I also want to know how to get more marks in essay. 

My reply:

Salam.

With regards to using idioms in essays, first, you have to identify suitable idioms for the essays.

You may visit the following websites and choose the appropriate idioms for the appropriate situations:
  1. http://www.learn-english-today.com/idioms/idioms_proverbs.html
  2. http://www.usingenglish.com/reference/idioms/cat/
Or you may simply google: "idioms themes"

Let's take the example of the previous essay that you wrote - 'A Visit to the Zoo'

The example of idioms that can be used are:
  1. hit the road - When you hit the road, you begin a journey.
    • We hit the road at 9.00 a.m.
  2. with bells on - If you go somewhere with bells on, you are delighted and eager to go there.
    • We went to the zoo with bells on.
  3. reach for the moon - If you reach for the moon, you are very ambitious and try to achieve something even if it is difficult.
    • In the drawing competition, everyone reached for the moon.

  1. had a whale of a time - to have an exciting or fun time
    • We had a whale of a time at the zoo.
  2. kill two birds with one stone - If you kill two birds with one stone, you succeed in doing two things at the same time.
    • We managed to learn two main things in this trip. Firstly, we learnt about the different types wild animals kept in the zoo. Secondly, we learnt how these animals are conserved. It was like killing two birds with one stone.
Hope I've helped.
Thursday, March 27, 2014 1 comments

Writing a Report (PMR) - A Visit to the Zoo

Salam and Hi,

Here's another essay from an anonymous student that I checked recently.

The original essay:

A Visit to the Zoo by the English Language Society 2014

               The English Language Society of SMK Ahmad had made a visit to zoo for the annual activity. A total of 50 members and four teachers involved in this trip. The main objectives for this trip was to promote awareness of endangered animals in the wild. We did many things there such as sightseeing around the zoo, drawing competition and treasure hunt. 

               Cik Suraya one of our advisors taken the attendance at the school compound by eight on the morning. We boarded the bus with two teachers each buses to supervise the members. We arrived at the zoo at 9 a.m. We tour around the zoo for one hour from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. We found my unique and rarely found animal like panda. It's such a worth sightseeing.

             Next, we gathered in front of zoo lake for the drawing picture competition. We given one hour to finish the drawing. The attractive privet will be given to the winner. It's made us more participated to do our best. By 11 a.m. we started the treasure hunt. We were divided to few groups. Everyone do their best in seeking the treasure. It took one hour to find all the treasure.

           After that, we had our lunch break. We were served with many foods that had been prepared by the zoo workers. We had the prize ceremony after done eating. Two student from lower forms and one student from upper forms won the prize.we departed at 1 p.m. It was an enjoyable and unforgettable trip.

           The society wanted to thanks to our advisors and the zoo workers for their support and guidance. The society would also like to express appreciation to all people that involved in this trip.

                                                                                                              Prepare by,
                                                                                                                 Anonymous
The corrected essay:

A Visit to the Zoo by the English Language Society 2014

               The English Language Society of SMK Ahmad had made a visit to the zoo for the annual activity. A total of 50 members and four teachers were involved in this trip. The main objectives objective for this trip was to promote awareness of the endangered animals in the wild. We did many things there such as sightseeing around the zoo, and taking part in the drawing competition and treasure hunt. 

               Cik Suraya, one of our advisors, taken took the attendance at the school compound by eight on in the morning. We boarded the bus with two teachers accompanying each buses bus to supervise the members. We arrived at the zoo at 9 a.m. We tour toured around the zoo for one hour from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. We found my many unique and rarely found animals like pandas. It's It was such a worth sightseeing.

             Next, we gathered in front of the zoo lake for the drawing picture competition. We were given one hour to finish the drawing. The attractive privet will be given to the winner. It's made us more participated to do our best. We were eager to participate in the competition and did our best. By 11 a.m. we started the treasure hunt. We were divided into a few groups. Everyone do did their best in seeking the treasure. It took one hour to find all the treasure.

           After that, we had our lunch break. We were served with many foods that had been prepared by the zoo workers. We had the prize giving ceremony after done eating. Two students from the lower forms and one student from the upper forms form won the prize. we We departed at 1 p.m. It was an enjoyable and unforgettable trip.

           The society wanted to thanks to thank our advisors and the zoo workers for their support and guidance. The society would also like to express our appreciation to all people that who were involved in this trip.

 


Reported by,
Anonymous
…………………………   
Anonymous,
The Secretary of The English Language Society,
SMK Ahmad

Teacher Nuha’s comments:
  • Good job for trying!
  • Use mostly the simple past tense from the beginning to end of the report.
  • It’s is the contractions for either ‘it is’ or ‘it has’

 
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