March Review Point and SET PDP + Reflection

Subject knowledge

For my CPD development with SET, I Researched TEFL methodology to apply it to a lesson plan and develop an activity. I acquired eight articles from a university contact, the articles now safely stored on my google drive. I selected ‘Ahmadi & Hasani, 2018 Capturing student voice on TEFL syllabus design: Agenticity of pedagogical dialogue negotiation’, due to Coffee & Alex’s ethos of learner-led education, and to approach professional standard nine ‘Apply theoretical understanding of effective practice in teaching, learning and assessment, drawing on research and other evidence,’.

 This article focused on empowering learners by involving learners in curriculum and lesson development. The article also advised allowing students to speak about their experiences out of class and to involve these experiences in their learning experience. Though the article focused on universities in Iran, the idea that learner engagement drops when lessons aren’t directly relatable to the learner’s lives is applicable. I applied Ahmadi & Hasani to my lesson plan by asking learners to create a podcast on Anchor. These podcasts are then listened to, including the learner’s voice.   

I also attended three ‘Functional English and Maths in prisons’ webinars, hosted by City and Guilds, and am going to attend the next in April. Most of these sessions focus on the content in functional English and Maths and how the curriculum is currently being developed. I found it interesting that it is graded through the construction of a portfolio, as this means I should be able to help learners complete this as a self-employed teacher. 

Teaching and Learning

I taught a demo workshop for the Round Lemon administrative team and passed! I will be teaching the workshop later in April. The workshop, hosted on Zoom, focused on allowing learners to explore what makes good writing for themselves through creating their compositions. 

 I started the workshop with a written stimulus, being a poem by Charles Bukowski. I asked for volunteers though the class were unwilling to read, to begin with, so I read the poem and asked learners to write questions they had in the chatbox. We then decided which order we wanted to ask the questions. Though it worked, the learners expressed that they would have preferred a visual stimulus, which will be incorporated in the later workshop. 

 We then moved on to Padlet, and I asked the learners to write whatever they wished to. This seemed to work well, as all participants could watch each other write in real-time and expressed their enjoyment. The written stimulus from the first activity was included to help elicit responses from the learners, which the learners mentioned was useful. 

 Lastly, I asked the learners to read their written work and explain why they wrote what they wrote, which elicited group discussion. I asked learners to provide constructive feedback, which generated group discussion. The learners said this was effective and that they felt the workshop had helped to increase their competence with creative writing. 

Academic writing

I have continued writing stories for Eduland, bringing me up to eight months! They are currently on holiday for a month. During this time my writing style has changed, and in my opinion, improved. I have found different ways of linking themes through dialogue and imagery, which in my opinion makes the stories read better. I have also increased the adjectives I use, such as rather than writing ‘white table’ I may write ‘white console table’. I have also learnt to become more aware of the set characteristics of the characters, and how to break from them by giving adequate reasons.

I have a story to be published in Round Lemon’s exhibition ‘April Fish’, and a poem to be published on ‘Soul Lit’. I have also developed a print with artist Davide Zipoli which will be available to purchase soon, and am working currently working with another artist to develop a second print. Reading articles on TEFL methodology and pedagogy has boarded my view of what makes a good article, largely the effectiveness of active research.

Professional Development Plan Lesson Plan

Reflection

Lesson Plan

6.1
ESOL
Unit: ESOL: Talking about yourselfWeek 2Subject tutor Alexander Clarke
Number of learners

4
Date

31/3/2021
Time

11:00
Topic of lesson

Personal Podcasts
Resources

Learner made podcasts on Anchor (5 mins)
Four white boards and pens
https://anchor.fm/  
Lesson aims To improve speaking and listening skills.Learning outcomes: Students will be able to … Express opinions on audio content.
Express facts about themselves.
Engage in conversation.  
Additional information (e.g. about individual students):

The students are from Greece, Thessaloniki. Three are male and one is female.
Assessment for learning (how the learning outcome will be assessed):

Facilitator Observation

Feedback form  
Present:  aims, recap/revise previous learning. Provide the big picture – why is this lesson important and relevant                  Maximum 35%                               
I have based this lesson from my reading of the following article:

Ahmadi & Hasani, 2018 ‘Capturing student voice on TEFL syllabus design:
Agenticity of pedagogical dialogue negotiation’

Learners have previously been asked to record a 5-minute podcast. It can about anything as long as it is about their own lives.  
The lessons aim is to be learner-led, and to empower learners by using their voice. As Ahmadi & Hasani (2018) write ‘conceptions of the “student voice” are indispensable elements of the calls for “change,” “growth,” and “transformation” of educational systems’. I wish to use student voice by getting learners to bring their podcasts and basing these podcasts on their interests and experiences outside of the classroom.

This should also increase STT and decrease TTT, providing more opportunities for learners to engage in activities that should be conducive to learning.

The lesson aims to improve speaking and listening skills.
Apply:  Students are given tasks that require them to apply the knowledge, theories, skills, that have been presented.  This involves problem solving, making decisions, creating things such as posters and mind maps.  Differentiation, key skills and equal opportunities are embedded. At least 65%Task 1: Listen to student A’s podcast (5 mins). Student B, C and D write four questions on whiteboards and one fact about student A. (10 mins)   Task 2: Learners make a circle. Each learner chooses one question they would like to ask. Open discussion is encouraged though not demanded. After all questions have been asked learners read the fact they wrote down about student A. Group discussion is encouraged. (15 mins)   Task 3: Listen to student B’s podcast (5 mins). Student A, C and D write four questions on whiteboards and one fact about student B. (10 mins)     Task 4:  Learners make a circle. Each learner chooses one question they would like to ask. Open discussion is encouraged though not demanded. After all questions have been asked learners read the fact they wrote down about student B. Group discussion is encouraged. (15 mins)

Task 5:
Listen to student C’s podcast (5 mins). Student A, B and D write four questions on whiteboards and one fact about student C. (10 mins)

Task 6:
Learners make a circle. Each learner chooses one question they would like to ask. Open discussion is encouraged though not demanded. After all questions have been asked learners read the fact they wrote down about student C. Group discussion is encouraged. (15 mins)

Task 7:
Listen to student D’s podcast (5 mins). Student A, B and D write four questions on whiteboards and one fact about student C. (10 mins)


Task 8:
Learners make a circle. Each learner chooses one question they would like to ask. Open discussion is encouraged though not demanded. After all questions have been asked learners read the fact they wrote down about student D. Group discussion is encouraged. (15 mins)  
Review:  What was learned is summarized and clarified.  Objectives are reviewed.  This can be done through Q & A (ask, don’t tell), quick quiz, test, peer questioning, mind maps, key points reiterated.   At least 5%The learners are asked to write one they learnt on the whiteboards. A brief discussion is encouraged in the hope to elicit deep learning.

Feedback forms completed by the facilitator are emailed to learners after the lesson. The forms are organized into three categories: What Went Well, Even Better If, Do Now.    

Published by Coffee & Alex

Alexander Clarke is a sole trader who writes and teaches. He’s published articles, blog posts, short stories and poems. He’s taught philosophy, theology, ESOL and PSHE.

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