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17804Re: [dogme] Re: Using a Dogme lesson with a difficult General Director

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  • Amanda Chapman
    Jul 13 3:31 PM
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      Phil, thank you for these observations!

      I am working at a US campus of an IEP mega-corp and many of my students have very specific needs and goals -- the others are just there for the student visa). They are given placement tests but in order to maximize the school's profits they are shoved in together to group classes that are often not right for their level (which they complain about, a lot!). I would love to be able to work with them more individually.

      We also are given books that are so inadequate and random that we have to supplement them heavily and some teachers seem to abandon them altogether. And since students are always coming and going it's hard to find time to establish a community and assess and meet the needs of each individual student, as well. And these factors make it hard for me to develop the confidence to use unorthodox approaches, especially since I have to maintain 4/5 on my student's evaluations to keep the job.

      It's been a bad first two weeks...

      Fortunately I have only made a short-term commitment.


      On Sun, Jul 13, 2014 at 8:55 AM, philawade@... [dogme] <dogme@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

      Hi Mel,

      Sounds like every single one of my BE students. The CELTA and non-CELTA teachers seem to just do worksheets and typical TEFL lessons which don't work. Some directors are nice and just follow and take it as a 2 hour break. Others stop going and disappear. A few complain.

      The problem is that the students needs were probably never expressed or they signed up for a generic course or there was some heavy sales involved. Whatever, it is your problem now.

      This is what I do and it works for me:

      1) Have a VERY detailed discussion about their needs, then give them a level assessment and suggestions on what to work on to achieve their goals. If they are language-based, easy. If they are business skills, easy too.

      2) Discuss and agree on 5 learning goals and plan out 10 lesson topics.

      3) Find out what they want to do in class, how and if they have any time before or after for revision, probably not.

      There you go.

      For materials, forget books as these are senior staff. So, have a look at Emmerson's Management Lessons. I use it with senior staff and it is great. Also try Newsmart as they have video lessons and articles.

      As for Dogme, it doesn't hurt preparing a few activities before but go with whatever sparks their interest and develop speaking and writing activities naturally. Also, get to know them, build a rapport and ask about their company. Be prepared to do whatever they need and when. For instance, if he arrives at 9 and says "I have a videoconference at 12. Can you help me prepare?".

      I really find this interesting and it is the kind of teaching that pushes you to develop and is what 'tailored/bespoke' lessons really should be,in my opinion.

      Hope this helps.


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