Videos and images used in the classroom can be huge distractions if used ineffectively. Chris Curtis has spoken about this very problem at the recent Team English National Conference and Rugby ResearchEd, and written about this very problem in his excellent blog here (http://learningfrommymistakesenglish.blogspot.com). I think the curse of the powerpoint can sometimes lead us to bombard our students with images, and I’ve made a conscious effort to really strip back what I include when I’m teaching. But when can it be helpful?
X Curtis @Xris32 is a great Twitter account to follow. Below are some of the resources he has worked on for Edusites English
What is a furrow?
If this word ever came up in articulate, I would be a gibbering wreck. Try explaining this to a class full of students whose only interaction with a farm has been playing with the Playmobil set in preschool. Stick an image on the board, and everyone knows what you mean. And then you can get into the details and the history of ploughing (thanks life long addiction to The Archers). When it comes to teaching vocabulary, a photo or image is a crucial part of your direct instruction. It is this, and it isn’t this.
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Of all the challenges in the English Language exam, question one fades into the background when compared to the complexities of question four, or the mental gymnastics for the analysis in questions two and three. Question one sits there. Unobtrusive. Inoffensive. Nonchalant. A little dream of a question, really. “Find four things…”. Can’t go wrong, right?
The language analysis in question two is a tricky little gem of a question. Most students feel pretty confident attacking this one, and usually even weaker students can pick up one or two marks. I’m going to split this into advice for those who are aiming for each separate ‘level’, because the advice I would give is quite different.
And now question three. You little tricky brute. It should be so simple! Teach structural devices, and how to analyse them, chuck in a couple of nice sounding technical terms to boost their confidence, and voila! Eight out of eight? NO.
What is the problem with question four? It should be as simple as teaching the difference between analysis and evaluation, point them in the right direction, and watch them go. But it isn’t.
AQA Love and Relationships Over the past 2 exam cycles, I have observed that the students who worked the hardest, who committed a vast about of subject knowledge to memory, were able to achieve grades far higher than targeted. They learn them and quote them but do they really know what ‘to do’ with them? As Amy Forrester stated ‘I began to realise that the key wasn’t just in the retention of quotations but in the knowledge of what to say about them’.