CELTA Teaching Practice – Day 6

This will be a very quick update, since I have a “functions” lesson to plan tonight and this is my first time teaching this type of lesson.

Here’s Bear Village, my home sweet home (until Saturday afternoon):

Bear Village

My typical day (Tues-Sat last week; Mon-Fri this week) looks like this:

Between 5:30-7:00 am Wake up (earlier if I’ve been doing language analysis in my dreams)

7:45-8:00 am Walk from Bear Village to the teaching center (it was above freezing today — hallelujah!)

8:00-9:15 am Do last minute prep, make copies, get input from my trainer on my lesson plan

9:15-9:30 am Get myself set up in the classroom (are the computer & projector on? are there markers?  do I need any special supplies?)

Between 9:30am-12:30pm Teaching practice (there are 4 teacher-trainees in each teaching group; we each teach a 45-minute lesson on an assigned topic/skill/text)

12:45pm (since we never finish the teaching practice on time) to 1:30pm  Get lunch

1:30-1:45pm Write up & submit our self-evaluation of our teaching

1:45-2:45  Feedback with our teaching group & trainer

3:00 to about 4:00 Input (teaching methods, classroom management tips, good sources, CELTA housekeeping)

4:00-4:45 Lesson planning (with input from our trainer if requested); get the detailed written feedback from our trainers on each aspect of the lesson that we taught

4:45 Head back to the apartment

5:00-??? Eat a quick dinner with the roomies, plan the next day’s lesson (with presentation materials and handouts, with sources noted for everything that I didn’t originate), and complete and submit the prescribed cover page, procedure page(s), and language analysis.

The cover page requires:
– lesson type
– main aim
– sub aims
– personal aims (what do I plan to do to improve my teaching based on the day’s feedback)
– assumptions
– anticipated classroom management problems and planned solutions
– my board plan for the lesson (how I will use the white board)

The procedure page requires the following for each stage:
– timing
– interaction pattern (teacher talking to students? students working alone? students working together?)
– stage name
– stage aim (why am I doing this?)
– procedure description (exactly what will I do & how will I do it?)
My lessons usually have about 6 stages, plus an extension activity in case the class finished the planned work early.

The language analysis requires the following for each language item to be clarified (and there are usually 5 per lesson):
– meaning
– how you will clarify the meaning (concept-checking questions)
– form analysis
– pronunciation analysis
– appropriacy
– anticipated problems with the language and planned solutions
– a listing of all sources used for the analysis (thank you, Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English!)

Grammar lessons also require guided discovery — questions/activities that encourage the students to discover the rules of the grammar topic for themselves.  The two grammar lessons have been the two lessons that kept me up until 1:30-2:00am; usually I’m done by 10:30-11:00pm.

Just to add to the fun, tomorrow we’ll be observed and interviewed by the CELTA assessor (from Cambridge University).  Cambridge has an assessor go to every CELTA program (every session, around the world) to ensure that the CELTA centers are meeting Cambridge standards and are assessing CELTA candidates uniformly.  The assessor will watch 4 teacher-trainee’s lessons tomorrow (yes, I’m one of the four, and am teaching a lesson type that I haven’t taught before).

We enjoyed the balmy “beach weather” (high 50s) today.  Tomorrow, the temperature is expected to drop from 54 degrees (at llam) to 27 degrees (by 6pm), with a forecast of freezing rain and the possibility of snow.  (Welcome to Springfield, Mr. CELTA Assessor!)

Weather forecast

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