Monday, October 09, 2006

Not just chatting

We're getting there.

Today - tomorrow rather - Tuesday that is - we welcome back our conversation assistants. Let's see if Joan, Audrey, Richard, Lance, Jon, John, Jane, Lynette and any others that may have slipped my mind turn up.

Yesterday I mentioned that people are a resource, and that as people we can help each other reach our goals. That goes most especially for conversation assistants.

Yesterday I also introduced the term language planning, where the teachers give the students sufficient time to produce a good response.

Today before the conversation assistants arrive, I would like you to think about how you can best make use of them as a resource. What would you like their help with mostly. Please don't say, "I am happy with anything," or "I would like their help with everything," because that isn't helpful for them! Students have different needs. Every student needs more help in certain areas.

If you don't ask for what you want, you may not get what you need, and therefore not be making the best use of a resource. If you don't know what you need, then that is the first thing to find out.

AM4 and AM3 have conversation at the same time - 11-12 - every Tuesday. I would like our classes to pool our assistants. There is a key that allows us to merge our two classrooms. I've tried it but it doesn't work, but perhaps by tomorrow . . . In addition, we shall have other classrooms at our disposal, so that there will not be too many people all speaking at once.

I am going to form you into groups based on similar need which will stay together. Each week you will work with a different assistant. In this way I hope that you will make the best improvements.

Other things we'll cover on Tuesday:

  1. Write a log, letter, or keep an audio journal

  2. Tell me which Topic you've chosen

  3. Start on 'Required Tasks' (email, topic, log)

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