I started my practicum today. It is taking place at a local community college in an adult ESOL reading, writing and grammar course. It's the last dedicated ESOL course before entering the regular GE transfer requirement English course. It is a very mixed group of students with all different ages, backgrounds and native languages. The teacher seems really great and I'm excited about the whole process.
I really liked the embarrassing moment personal stories. It forced students to tell a story and everyone was laughing and smiling. It immediately dropped the affective filter for most students. It also bridged the gap between the parts of speech review and geared them up really well for the madlib activity that was next. I felt this was very successful in having the students use the material without even notice what was happening.
The academic word list was something new for me. I had heard of the most common 2000 words in English and lists of differing lengths (1000, 5000, 10000), but not the academic one. It makes sense to get them up to speed on the more technical vocabulary that isn't in everyday conversation. However, I'm still unsure at this point of the role of flashcards in vocabulary learning. I know that I can't stand to study by flashcards and that I definitely don't retain as much information that way. This could simply be because I don't enjoy it though.