Structure suggestions for 60hr (non-false) beginners course

Help, tips and advice in teaching English

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Structure suggestions for 60hr (non-false) beginners course

Unread postby Chocmonster » 11 Jan 2010, 12:41

*** Hi Lucy! Sorry for the cross-posting, but I am eager (desperate) for an answer to this one - would be most greatful if you could oblige, and sorry that the question has probably already been asked! ***

Dear all,

My darling HOS has given me another course, and this time it's beginners.

60 hours, 8-10 students, middle aged+, no, or effectively no previous knowledge.

Undoubtedly this question has been asked before… but here it is again:

'What's in a decent course for total beginners?'

The course:

2 hours one evening a week
German native speakers
Possibly some English learnt at school (30+ years ago)
No materials provided
OHP projector, CD player and whiteboard in room only (possible TV and DVD)
Neither students nor school have course books
Small East German town - minimal or no exposure to English in the student's every day life

About me:

I prefer not to work exclusively from a book
I am prepared to dip into one if it suits the matter at hand
Last time I taught beginners I intimated them and 50% fled after the first lesson

What I'm looking for:

A chronological checklist of things to teach
Pitfalls and things to watch out for when teaching them
Ideas for good games/course books/real life materials
List of things to avoid!

If anyone can help me, either on this thread, or per PM/mail, please do so.

Apologies in advance for not checking the forums for similar posts, time does not allow it.

Best regards and happy new year to you all


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Re: Structure suggestions for 60hr (non-false) beginners course

Unread postby Lucy » 12 Jan 2010, 16:31

Hi Edd,

I think that the easiest thing for the teacher is to follow a course book. You say you don't like sticking too closely to a course book and I understand this. You can use a coursebook as a framework or something you dip into.

You will save a lot of time, the work will be structured, there will be a natural progression through the items studied. Also, good course books are piloted extensively; so you can be sure that the material is good.

My favourite for absolute beginners is English File. The activities are short and punchy; and all areas of language and skills are covered from lesson one. There is also a very good teachers' book and extra activities book that contains games etc. Why re-invent the wheel when good material exists? You'll be being kind to yourself.

I suggest you take a look at it. If for any reason you absolutely do not want to use a book, please write in again and I'll give you ideas.


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