Happy Valentine's Day from the BEA kids and staff! It was another busy day at BEA today, especially since it was Valentine's Day and the start of student conferences.
Valentine's Day Activities:
This year, I spent a lot more time planning our holiday lessons, which took almost 6 hours this morning! The planning itself wasn't that challenging, it was all the color printing of flashcards that took forever. Regardless of the holiday, I always find these types of lesson to be the most challenging because of the culture content. Many of the activities I found online was mostly reading or worksheet-type activities that don't give students a lot of speaking time. I love working with flashcards, and the students like playing card-type games, so I decided to make a Valentine's vocabulary lesson.
In the first part of our lesson, the kids had to write their names down on paper hearts for a chocolate raffle at the end of the class. I told them that there were only two chocolate hearts for each class, so they had to enter a raffle for them, but of course, I got chocolate for all of them. We then moved onto some vocabulary drill with flashcards focusing on Valentine's Day related terms. The Basic and Pre-Intermediate courses learned noun-verb expressions, such as give a box of chocolates, write a Valentine, and get a red roses. The vocabulary for the Intermediate course was idiomatic, such as I'm in love, She's love struck and We're crazy in love. Students then got to practice their new vocabulary in a game of concentration. Rather than having the kids just turn the cards over, they had to say the word for the picture on the card and then a make a sentence for it. If students didn't use the word correctly (even if they had a pair), they had to turn the cards back over. For the Pre-Intermediate and Intermediate courses, we also had a Valentine's Rhyming Game. Students worked in groups and completed a worksheet. They had to read a series of clues and then find a Valentine's Day word that rhymed with the clue. This was quite an effective activity because it helped students with their pronunciation. Cambodian students have a tendency to drop the final consonants on words, so this really helped them to pay more attention to those final consonants.For the last part of class, all the BEA kids got their chocolate and wished my a Happy Valentine's Day! I even got a few hand-made paper roses from some of the students. If any of you are interested, the Valentine's Day Rhyming activity is in an embedded document at the end of today's blog entry.
Shally was also very busy today as well with student conferences. He managed to talk with almost half of the students in each of our courses. The purpose of these conferences is to give students their first semester grades, and to give them advice on how to improve their English language skills. This also gives the kids a chance to ask Shally questions about their studies, as well as other issues in their lives. In most cases, Shally is often the only person in their lives that they can confide in about personal issues.
Spring Break 2012:
Tomorrow is the last day of our first semester, so the BEA kids will be on their spring break for three weeks. However, we'll be back to classes on March 12. Although the kids will have break, Shally and I will be busy as usual. We'll be preparing for our CamTESOL presentation on Sunday, February 26 and revising the curriculum for the second semester.
Back to the books ...
The Bayon English Academy (BEA) is an NGO school that provides underprivileged youth with quality English language education in a safe, clean environment in Siem Reap, Cambodia.