How do I prepare for an AEON interview?

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How do I prepare for an AEON interview?

Unread postby nesone » 26 Feb 2007, 01:32

Hello all,

I have recently graduated from college and am preparing for an interview for AEON where I have to prepare a 30-minute ESL-style lesson plan and make a 5-minute presentation from the lesson plan. The content should focus on English conversation at a beginning level.

This will be my first time to teach, and I was wondering, does anyone have any suggestions of topics that would be particularly suitable for a five-minute presentation? How about creative ways of presenting? In this case, the other applicant will act as students.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.


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How do I prepare for teaching unknown students abroad?

Unread postby Lucy » 03 Mar 2007, 13:32

Hello Matthew,

The kind of topics that are commonly covered at beginner level are: nationalities and countries, jobs, likes and dislikes, describing daily routines using adverbs of frequency and the simple present. At beginner level, vocabulary is usually lacking and I think this is a good idea for your needs.

I suggest you stick with something simple as this will allow the interviewers to see what you can do and to assess your ability. If you use complicated activities that take time to explain and set up, you won’t show yourself in the best light.

I suggest you use pictures to illustrate sports and activities. For example: watching football, playing football, watching/playing tennis etc. Add some activities that are not sporty to cover a range of preferences: shopping, watching TV, going to the cinema. Try to keep the language simple. You can start by showing the pictures to students and saying the words aloud. Have the students repeat after you and insist on correct pronunciation. Continue until you think that students have a good grasp of the language. You can then show them the pictures and ask them to name the pictures themselves. You should aim to spend a maximum of ten minutes on this part of the lesson.

You can then tell the students which activities you enjoy. You can hold up a picture and say “I like swimming”, “I don’t like watching TV”, etc. Use gesture or pictures to illustrate your meaning: you could show a big smile to show what you like and an unhappy face for the opposite. Alternatively, you could use simple illustrations of unhappy and smiley faces. Look carefully at students reactions and you will get an idea of whether they have understood or not. If not, I think a simple translation of like and don’t like will help them. (Try not to use their mother tongue during the lesson; a translation of one or two words can be justified to aid understanding and to allow you to progress to the next stage more quickly).

You can then invite students to say what they like and don’t like. Try to keep it to the vocabulary you presented in the first stage. If you allow students to describe all their likes and dislikes it can get complicated and you will be presenting too much new vocabulary. If you feel that students are coping well with this stage, you can introduce the question: “do you like dancing?” and the short answer: “yes, I do”, “no, I don’t”.

Finally, you should allow the students a few minutes to work in pairs, telling each other what they like and dislike. If you have presented the question and short answer, they could use this too. During this stage, you circulate, help where necessary and note any errors to be corrected at the end of the activity.

You will need to write the new vocabulary on the board. Try to do as much work as possible before the students see the new language. Very often when students have seen the words, pronunciation is affected because they read the word as they would in their own language instead of reproducing what they hear from the teacher. If the students seem to master the language, keep the written stage until the end. If not, put the vocabulary up on the board at the end of stage one and put up I like and I don’t like between presentation and practice of this language point.

Another point to remember is that in any lesson, error correction is vital. As you are teaching other teachers, you won’t get many opportunities to show how you correct. I suggest you put something in your lesson plan to describe how you would deal with the errors that real students make.

Good luck with your interview.


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