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Observation Statement

Huizi Zhao

While I was studying in the TESOL program at the University of California, Riverside,
it was mandatory to observe ten ESL classes of a variety of levels and skills. What I
appriciate about observing is that I can directly analyze the routine of each class and
method that are used in different ways. I love the games that teachers made for
students to participate and the practical approaches that made class fluent and
interesting. Here, I am going to analyze some of my favorite observations.

In observation report#7, Ms. Ann Sandi taught reading and listening for intermediate
ESL students. The objectives of that class were that students would identify main
ideas, use a new reading method to complete after-reading activity, and write a
summary of the article. While students were working on the tasks, she led them come
up questions and inspired them to come up with new ideas. Although students were in
groups, she kept going around and checking everyones status. On the other side,
students were active and cooperative when doing group work. Sometimes students
had arguments about questions. Ms. Sandi would went up and guided them to work
out those questions.

In Ms. Sandis class, I felt she really played a role of counselor and enablier. It is a
modern request for a teacher to have less control and overt organization so that
students gradually become independent. In the class, teachers should provide students
the suitable materials and topics for self-learning and inter-learing. Being the role of
counselor can help students learn better because studenst have individual problems
and weakness of learning English. To satisfy these various needs, it is necessary for
teachers to address them by using many real and realistic tasks and by using different
techniques, like group-work.

If I adopt the concept above in the future, I will use it when students are ready so that
they wont feel uncomfortable or unprepared. For example, if I want to be a role of
counseling in a conversation class, and my students are ESL learners, I will teach
them the target expression first, and then I will let them use the target expression to
prepare a speech/ some survey questions. In addition, I will give them some models
and provide some related videos or handouts for students that are accessible after
class.

The other observation report I want to analyze here is observing report#3. It was Ms.
Candace Jorgensen teaching oral skills for IOF students. The objectives of the class
were for students to describe body language, and present a short presentation for the
class. Ms. Jorgensen instructed the class in three steps. First, she presented the
different forms of body language, like eye contact, waves, and gestures. Then, she
divided students into pairs and gave them each separate paragraphs about introducing
body languages to read. The task here is that students work on the paragraph and they
will present the content of the class. Lastly, pairs present the paragraph and the rest of
the class gives their suggestions.

The teaching method in the class is Presentation-Practive-Production (P.P.P.), which is


a basic routine for teaching ESL class. Generally speaking, teaching with P.P.P,
teacher will teach the content and introduce some new knowledge to students at
presentation; then, students will be given some mechanical and meaningful
practice; at the end, students will finish the final production task that is
communicative and independent(Thornbury, 1999).

When I use P.P.P in the future, I can adopt it for different skills with different levels. To be
specific, if I teach intermediate ESL students grammar, I can utilize P.P.P to process the class.
I will use a scenario for warming up, then I will teach them how to use the target content with
some examples and identify the usages. At the end, I provide them with a writing task or I can
let them do some interview/survy by using the target grammar.
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To sum up, there are many pros that I realized after I did the observation notebook. I learned
how to organize the class and, more importantly, how to be the kind of teacher that students
want to have. There were many laughs and vivid moments in the observed classes that remind
me that teaching is also a process of learning.

Reference:
Scott, Thornbury.1999. How to teach grammar. UK, Oxfordshire, Charlbury: Blusetone Press.
Chapter 8: How to integrate grammar. Page 128.