Showing posts from 2018

Interactive Teaching

Active learning fosters understanding rather than memorization of facts, as explained by the University of Waterloo's Centre for Teaching Excellence. It encourages students to apply learning to different problems and contexts; it gives students more autonomy over their learning; and it helps students learn how to learn.

This resource shows nine different active learning tasks that can be integrated into courses to foster engagement with class material and between students, which will energize a class by breaking regular routine.

Of these activities, questioning will be the most useful in improving your instructional delivery if you find yourself relying on traditional methods of lecturing and explanation.

Questions play such a key role in the classroom, from eliciting answers, to concept checking theories, to following up on tasks. When questions are met with silence, often times it is because of the construction of the question. Planning when to ask, who to ask, what to ask and h…

Concept Checking Questions (CCQs)

“Right?” “Does that make sense?” “Cool?” “OK?”  These are all variations of the question "do you understand?" and these types of questions are ineffective at checking your student's understanding. Instead, it is better to ask concept check questions (CCQs).

What is a CCQ? What can it check for?

A concept checking question is designed to highlight the core the meaning of the lesson's target, whether that's a concept, language, communicative functions, or really, for anytime you want to ask, “Do you understand?” The objective of concept checking is through critical thinking learners will enhance their learning of a target by adding to what they already know.

By using CCQs:
You can draw out what your learners knowLearners get to participate in the learning process of discovering and understanding the new targetLearners articulate their knowledgeYou can clarify and add to their knowledge  Golden rules for using CCQs:
Plan CCQs in advanceAsk questions that are simpleDi…

Instruction Checking Questions (ICQs)

Concise, logical instructions are crucial to the success of any activity in the language classroom. We have all experienced the results that poor instructions can have: failure from s’s to do/complete tasks, repetition or reprimands,students who “zone out” or aren’t paying attention when instructions are given, frustration from both teachers and students etc.  Through analysis of contextualized examples of instructions, this blog post will look at what to consider when giving instructions and how to follow up with Instruction Checking Questions.

There are many factors that can help or or hinder whether instructions given will be understood. I know, unfortunately though experience, that the instructions we give can make or break an activity.  Without clear instructions, students may become confused, may lose confidence, and may not get the most out of the learning experience you are trying to create.

Let’s take a look at what this essential teaching skill really looks like in the class…