Posted in Teacher motivation

Killjoy… #atozchallenge

I sometimes feel like teaching kids is an uphill struggle. Me, trying to push learning, them rolling down easily, making no effort to resist gravity.

The other day we finished up with the presentations of their favourite songs (see my post about that here,  it was received well) and they more or less took part nicely. (I’m saying “more or less” coz infuriatingly some of them just don’t respect each other enough to listen.)

We just started reading a text about free running in the book when already the requests started:

“Can we play?”

You probably know (or can guess from my intent to use music in the classroom) that I’m all for games. But also all for sleep and when I would need to design whole lessons by myself because the books don’t seem to cater for the need of teens to be entertained constantly, I’m selfish enough to only do some fun activities here or there to save me time.

As it turned out, it’s not good enough. It didn’t take long for another girl to chime in:

“This is boring,  teacher!”

I have to admit, it hurts hearing that. I never just walk into a class, picking up the book and do whatever it says. I do in fact take a lot of time to try to make the class interesting so hearing that complaint is not only a total killjoy but also a sign that I failed.

I failed in keeping their attention, in making them associate English with positive emotions.

I could spin it in every which way but essentially it means I’m not good enough to do so. The fact is, some people are naturally entertaining. They can take the book and put humour and swag into it without a bother and the kids would eat out of their palms in a second.

Well I’m not one of those people.

I have my moments of course, I think we all do, but I’d never put stand-up comedian on my resume.

So what does this mean? Shall I construct every lesson from scratch? Shall I accept defeat and just power through the boring parts no matter what? Or is there another option you’d suggest? (Please don’t say personality change, a.k.a. loosen up coz I’m just not a loosen-up type of gal.) But I’d love to know your opinion.

***

In April I set myself a challenge to use more music when teaching English. I passionately believe in the power of music to make everything better and I want to motivate my students to feel more relaxed, and at the same time more inspired about learning English. It’s an interesting journey with ups and downs! 😉

***

Check out the picture edits on The Script Bible – it’s a real team effort. 🙂

Today’s featured blogger is A to Z co-host AJ Lauer.  Click here to visit AJ’s blog where she writes an interactive story.

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My soul breathes music and exhales words.

2 thoughts on “Killjoy… #atozchallenge

  1. May I suggest finding some filler go-to games? No matter what age they are, there are some games that they will love to play again and again. Find games that are versatile, ones that you can use to cover multiple concepts. Here are some of my favorites:

    Hangman (but I like to draw a smiley face instead of hanging a man)
    Charades or Pictionary (Draw or act out and let everyone guess – works really well with verbs)
    I Spy YOU (Have all the kids stand up and begin describing a student. All students that don’t fit the description sit down – works well for colors and adjectives)
    Twenty Questions (Helps students form questions)
    Telephone (Tell a student the concept you want to cover, let it go through the telephone, then reiterate the concept and ask them if they know what that means)
    Popcorn (Pick a student and ask them a question, then that student says, “Popcorn… [Name]” thus picking the next person to answer your question.)
    True or False: (Make a statement and ask them if they think it’s a real rule or not, then talk about why.)

    Hope that helps!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. How about playing Articulate (board game)? It would probably help with vocabulary…
    Or… if you’re working with a story/text, get the kids to make a play out of it and give marks for presentation. haha.

    Like

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