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Designing One-to-One Language Courses

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Designing an effective one-to-one language course is challenging but incredibly rewarding if you get it right. This slideshare highlights the key principles any language teacher should follow, from pre-course Needs Analysis and Level Assessment, to mapping out course pathways, to designing individual lessons, There are practical examples, including day-by-day lesson plans. This is the result of many years' teaching, course planning and course management - for private individuals, schools and companies. Chris is now Managing Director of Specialist Language Courses - - where he and his team continue to design, arrange and manage tailor-made language courses around the world.

Text of Designing One-to-One Language Courses

  • 1.Designing One-to-One Courses Chris Moore, Managing Director, Specialist Language Courses

2. One-to-One Courses are Needs-driven courses focus only on the language the students needs Personalised courses reflect a students level and learning style and go at their pace Flexible courses can change to reflect emergent needs Motivating courses are designed for students to have a great learning experience Collaborative you work with the student at all stages to ensure the course is on track Effective courses waste no time as students progress towards their goals 3. Step 1. Needs Analysis One-to-One courses start by clearly identifying the learners language needs. These become the objectives of the course. The learners needs may be a. Highly focused, for example giving a company presentation in English a. More varied, such as the many types of language required to pass an English exam at school Needs Analysis needs to be detailed. It examines the specific scenarios the learner needs to use their target language in. It identifies what language knowledge and skills they need to do that effectively. 4. Needs Analysis How do you do a Needs Analysis with your students? 5. Some Questions How often do you need to use English? What accents do you need to understand? What kind of writing do you do? Who do you use English with? What words do you need to express yourself? Do you workwith native or non- native speakers? Describe in detail the key scenarios you need to use English in What kind of texts do you read in English? 6. Step 2. Level Assessment Needs Analysis is combined with a language level assessment. This measures how far the learner currently is from being able to achieve their objectives. This assessment should focus on the areas the learner will be using the language in. It should be scenario-specific, and target the relevant skills the learner will focus on during their course. The assessment results should be shared with the learner in order to manage their expectations. If there is a wide gap between level and needs, but not much time allocated, then course objectives will need to be scaled back to what is achievable. 7. Level Assessment How do you assess what level your students have? 8. Level Assessment Remember! Accurate assessment reflects what the student needs to do in English. Tests should therefore contain an appropriate mix of a. vocabulary, grammar and pronunciation b. speaking, listening, reading, writing And be careful! Many tests on the market are grammatically based and this may not always be relevant to what your student needs to do. In practice, for example, your student may need a strong command of a few common forms, but her vocabulary requirements may be much higher 9. Step 3. Learning Preferences 10. Learning Preferences How do you discover your students learning preferences? 11. Course Design Principles 1 Begin with the end in mind & work backwards 1. Objectives What are you here? Whats the point of this course? What do you want to be able to do by the end of this course? 2. Language Skills required What language skills are required to achieve the learners objective? Better business vocabulary? Writing accurately? Speaking clearly and confidently? Understanding native speaker conversations? Understanding business reports? Summarising an argument? Ordering a beer? 12. Course Design Principles 2 3. Course Pathway How to best to introduce, practice and review the language skills identified Scaffolding learning how are you developing more complex language skills? Is the context appropriate? Learning has to be meaningful, to make sense to the world outside the classroom 4. Lessons Identify discrete modules, activities and map them out so they match the Course Pathway Share it with your student, elicit feedback both you and the learner need to know whats happening Build in regular reviews and assessments 13. Course Planning Alignment Objectives Language Required Course Pathway Lessons 14. Course Design sample 1 1. Objective: I need to write company reports in English 2. Language Skills Required: - Writing to your audience (shareholders, board of directors, staff) - Using formal language correctly register, style, passive voice, modal verbs - Connecting ideas within and between sentences, different clause types - Using an appropriate format headings, paragraphing - Expressing key ideas effectively, eg summary, problems, conclusions, recommendations, forecasts - Writing clear case studies and industry examples 15. Course Design sample 1 3. Course Pathway needs to include: Vocabulary - Connectors.. Within sentences, between sentences - Language to.. introduce ideas, describe cause and effect, state challenges, recommend solutions, conclude - Formal language conventions contractions, phrasal verbs, formulaic expressions. Impersonal style - Relevant business and technical vocabulary Grammar - Reporting what happened, past tense - Describing processes, focus on passive, present tense - Using modal verbs, especially would - Forecasting future, including 1st conditional Report Writing - Understanding the audience and writing appropriately - Format, structure, paragraphing - Writing an impactful executive summary - Importance of clarity 16. Course Design sample 1 4. Lesson Plan Objectives Week 1: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Course Programme Arrival Needs Analysis & negotiation of this weeks Course Programme Describing processes, using present tense, inc passive voice and impersonal style Focus on connecting ideas effectively sentence and paragraph level Describing the past clearly and accurately Write an effective executive summary Review 17. Course Design sample 1 4. Lesson Plan Activities Week 1: Please Zoom! Daily Record of Lessons Clarify needs language scenarios, skills required, student priorities Language Analysis spoken, written (contextualized to reflect needs) Learning Preferences test Map out programme, agree with student Read text describing relevant business process. Check for comprehension. Analyse structure and grammar used. target present forms and passive Focus on present simple, continuous, perfect Practice on mixed forms (gap-fill, writing) Focus on passive (in present tense) Apply to process description student writes text from pictures/notes Review, look at ways to improve Intro different connectors: By type (within and between sentences) By meaning (contrast, addition, exemplification, time, etc) Practice gap fill, write examples (relevant to report subject matter) Integrate with relevant process text Take text from yesterday and improve with connectors Read past narrative (relevant to student needs, eg business case study). Check for comprehension Look at examples of grammar past simple, continuous, perfect, modal Analyse use and balance in the text Practice using mixed forms Write a case study on a relevant topic. Use notes/video to introduce Review, look at ways to improve Read 2 examples of exec summaries 1 good, 1 bad. Analyse - Subject - Audience - Structure - Tone - Impact Practice words into sentences Write an executive summary (from a report where the summary has been removed), review and discuss, compare with original, look at ways to improve Review main learnings from the week, look forward to week 2 18. Course Design sample 2 1. Objective: I want to speak better English 2. Language Skills Required: - Key Skill 1: Speaking with clear pronunciation - Key Skill 2: Understanding a variety of accents - Scenario 1: Getting to know people, networking - Scenario 2: Talking about your interests and preferences - Scenario 3: Asking questions, responding appropriately - Scenario 4: Travelling overseas asking for info/directions, ordering food/drink, etc - Scenario 5: Key functions - inviting, suggesting, requesting - Scenario 6: Giving opinions 19. Course Design sample 2 3. Course Pathway needs to cover: Scenario-focused language development Introducing yourself and others, small talk, Discussing what you and others do in free time Getting to know people, asking questions Going places: Asking for info, making invitations and suggestions Travel ordering food and drink, asking for directions, asking for help and info Pronunciation focus Individual sounds Intonation word & sentence level Connected speech Listening skills development Listening for gist, listening for key information Different accents native, non-native Dialogue practice 20. Course Design sample 2 4. Lesson Plan Objectives Week 1: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Course Programme Arrival Needs Analysis & negotiation of the weeks Course Programme Talking about yourself self, family, job, where you live Pronunication focus Greetings, Asking questions Pron focus Describing preferences and free time activities Making invitations/ suggestions Pron focus Travelling overseas Ordering and requesting Asking for information Review 21. Course Design sample 2 4. Lesson Plan Activities Week 1: Please Zoom! Daily Record of Lessons Clarify needs language scenarios, skills required, student priorities Language Analysis spoken, written (contextualized to reflect needs) Learning Preferences test Map out programme, agree with student Listening to people introduce themselves Note key phrases, practice in context (mini-dialogues) Read transcript, highlight (a) target language (b) common grammatical structures (b) new vocab Practice student introduces him/ herself (could be a famous person teacher guesses who) Extend where appropriate note vocabualry Pron focus: Highlight one area of weakness & review/ practice. This should be prepared beforehand. Include listening practice. Elicit greetings formal informal Elicit question words, contextualize with simple questions Focus on question structures (a) qs about the subject (b) qs about the object Focus on intonation for questions (listening ex) Familiarisation work: gap-fill / words into sentences Meeting people st writes qs to ask when at a party (review some language from yesterday) Roleplay above, using greetings, Q&A with teacher, review and feedback Pron focus: Highlight one area of weakness & review/ practice. Elicit free time activities sports, hobbies Personalise Q&A on favourite activities, when started, how often, achievements, etc. Note language as it emerges focus on likes, dislikes, preferences Focus: language of preference analyse, practice, contextualize Introduce invitations and suggestions in context, eg through listening /video activity highlight and note down key phrases. Roleplay the above, review, feedback look at question forms used, note common forms Pron focus: Highlight one area of weakness & review/ practice. Elicit target vocab travel, accommodation, activities Note key scenarios and elicit language needed eg asking for directions/help, ordering food/drink, requesting a room. Use listening/ video prompts Roleplay the above, note use of relevant language Note down key expressions check understanding. Practice again. incorporate target language from previous lessons where possible. Review weeks learning points (inc pron), feedback on student progress, note areas of improvement 22. Find out more Specialist Language Courses organises outstanding 1:1 courses around the world. Choose from: English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Mandarin, Arabic and many more Intensive immersion courses at language schools around the world Tailor-made in-company courses Specialist online courses A blend of the above Contact us to find out more: e: [email protected] t: +44 1273 757535 w: