Focus on the Learner Celta Essay
ASSIGNMENT ONE FOCUS ON THE LEARNER 750-1000 words For this assignment you are going to write a report on a student in the TP class you are teaching now. As a practicing teacher, you will at times have to write reports on students for various reasons, e. g. passing on information to a colleague, providing information for a student’s employer, etc. The report should be based on the following: 1. Refer to the observation tasks which have helped you focus on various concrete aspects of the student’s performance 2.
Refer to brief interviews you conducted with your student, done in your own time 3.
Any written work you have collected and marked from the student. 4. Any additional materials you have provided for the learner to work on – do not forget to attribute them. Your reference to the learning styles will be based on your observations of the way the learner reacts to different class room activities and different types of lessons. You can refer to handouts you will be given in the Learning Styles session in week 1.
We are looking for evidence of the following: Successful candidates can demonstrate their learning by: An awareness of how learners’ backgrounds, previous learning experience, motivation and learning styles affect learning * Identification of the learners’ language skills and needs * Correct use of terminology relating to the description of language systems * Selecting appropriate material and resources to aid the learners’ language development * Provide a rationale for using specific activities with learners * Finding selecting and referencing information from one or more sources using written language that is clear, accurate and appropriate to the task.
Student’s name: Yelitza___________________________ Student’s level: _Pre-Intermediate___________________________________ An account of the student’s background and learning experience with particular regard to learning English| Yelitza is from Venezuela and has lived there all her life. She attended school inthe city of Caracas. She has been learning English for the last 6 years and displays a strong and confident ability in the use of the English language within the classroom.
The first 5 years of her learning were in spent in Venezuela and she has been learning in Ireland for the last year. | The student’s reasons / motivation for learning English and their needs in English| Yelitza decided to learn English for personal and professional reasons. She has mostly intrinsic motivations for learning English. She saw English as a useful language for travel and also for the enjoyment of personal development . Yelitza has shown a need for developing her pronunciation and also some grammar. | The student’s preferred learning style and the reasons for this.
The activities which the student enjoys most and benefits from in class| I interviewed Yelitza and asked her some questions according to the“Jim Wingate, Learning Preferences” Survey. Yelitza prefers to learn by visual and kinesthetic methods. She thrives in role-play situations where the learner’s are enabled to move around the room and have natural conversations. According to the Teaching Intelligently: Learner skills and Activities ChartYelitza shows traits of the bodily Kinaesthetic and the Interpersonal IntelligenceShe is an active learner and engages enthusiastically in tasks set. Details of the student’s strengths and weaknesses in each of the following areas:a)Skills (reading writing, listening speaking)b)Grammatical ability and accuracyc)Pronunciationd)Range of vocabulary and fluencyPlease refer to specific examples noted from observations and interview with student. | A)Skills Reading:Yelitza displayed strong reading skills in the class. She was confident when given reading tasks. She is confident in her abilities toread in both personal reading tasks and read aloud tasks. During class I noticed that Yelitza read the text and looked for words that shedid not know.
Although it can be a good method of self learning I feel like in that time searching for meaning distracted her from the main aim which was to practice reading for gist. Writing: Yelitza is also confident with her writing. It is clear and wellpresented. She uses her listening skills to scribe answers while listening. She can write well and at a good speed in English which highlights her fluency. I noticed on a task that Yelitza had completed that she had a spelling mistake. “aproximalitly”. She took a risk in using the language and writing it downbut spelling could be practiced.
Listening: Yelitza shows good strengths in her listening skills. She engagedwell in the listening tasks that were set during class. She easilyselected answers from the tape. Yelitza also shows a good ability to listen to native speakers and understandthe diverse changes in local accents and rhythms. Again this her skills in listening highlighted her level of fluency as she easily adapted to dialects etc. Speaking: Yelitza has a good level of speaking skills. She engages in allconversations in both Student to student, teacher to student and also group discussions.
She enjoys talking with people and views every conversation as a chance to practice and develop her language and speaking skills. Some areas of Yelitza’s speech are dominated by her Hispanic rhythm andpronunciation of sounds. Yelitza tends to sound the “V” for ‘b’ in pronunciationof words presented and while speaking. B) Grammatical Ability: Yelitza shows a good level of understanding grammarand its structures. She engages in the task and challenge of using the rightgrammar. Her willingness to learn and practice is of a benefit to her learning. Within her spoken language Yelitza often confuses components of the personalPronoun.
Although she correctly selects the pronoun he/she etc when she joins tthe verb she often omits endings (s) for example ‘he get the bus everyday’ C) Pronunciation: Yelitza can be understood very well and appears to makea conscious effort with her words while she speaks. There are very few wordswhich Yelitza finds difficult to use in her language. She tends to drop the stress of the Consonant in some words. “I often ea(t) brefas in the morning” According to “Learner English” by Michael Swan and Bernard Smith, Yelitza’sPronunciation weakness stems from her mother tongue being Spanish.
They state that Consonant clusters are not frequently used for the Spanish speaker and so when the Learner is using the English language they tend to drop the final consonants in English words. D)Range of vocabulary:Yelitza has a good range of basic vocabulary and comprehension. Sheunderstands a lot of the words that have been stumbling the other students. The word “footpath” was used in my lesson and where other students neededan explanation, Yelitza was part of the group who knew this vocabulary. Yelitza can sometimes find difficulties in the fluency of posing a question.
Instead of using the question form she will use a question tag (described inSwan’s Learner English book). This form of question is natural for Yelitza. Although she understands how to form a question her natural speech istransferred when she is speaking English. | Some suggestions for ways in which the students could be helped to improve in the areas of weakness mentioned. in the previous section. Provide at least three exercises/tasks that would help the learner improve. You can source from library or devise your own.
You must attach these when submitting as exercises you would give the student to do independently at home. | For Yelitzas pronunciation, I would give her a task which enabled herto work on the final sounds of words. This would help her individually hear and determine the sounds at the end of words. In particular with Yelitzas first language being Spanish I would focus on the s/z endings. As learner Yelitza must recognize the difference presented between English and Spanish pronunciation of s/z, paying particular attention to their phonetical roles withinwords.
Tasks set would include reading and selecting words that end in either s or zin sound highlighting and developing phonological awareness and word endings. As mentioned posing questions within the English language differs from thatof the Spanish language. Whereas in Spanish the statement is made into a question by adding a yes/no at the end- a question tag in English a question isformed through the use of the interrogative. Yelitza as learner must explore the use of the interrogative rather than the direct translation from Spanish toEnglish as demonstrated above.
To do this a task would be set whereby Yelitza will be presented with a list which comprises of answers. From these answers she must form the questionusing the interrogative. Pronoun and verb tasks would assist Yelitza in her grammatical challenges andweaknesses. Within these tasks it would be required to change sentences presented to different pronouns for example ‘I get the bus everyday’ to ‘he getsthe bus everyday’ | Any further comments you may feel relevant| No further comments| Adapted from International House Lisbon