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Teaching Young Children: An overview by Aris Mazarakis

The debate of how we should teach Languages to young children has been raging for decades and despite the existing methods, every teacher seems to walk into the language classroom armed with their own personal views and theories of what they should teach and how it should be taught. Eventually, most of those who teach such classes seem to employ rather...

Graded readers in ELT: the benefits and ways of using them

graded readers  Graded readers or ‘readers’ are books that contain language adjusted to the level of the learner. The language is graded for vocabulary, complexity of grammar structures and also by the number of words. They are made to cater for all levels from beginners to advanced.  Graded readers can help learners build their confidence in reading, and...

Helping young learners to speak English in class

  One of the challenges that teachers face when teaching young learners is to encourage them to speak English throughout the lesson and gradually establish L2 as the main means of communication in class. Challenging though it may be, once achieved, it is most rewarding for learners and teachers. by Dimitris Primalis, Teacher, Teacher Trainer...

Following the Child: Pre-School EAL and Why Montessori Had the Answers

Pre-School English as an Additional Language is notorious for the inexplicable challenge it withholds for us, teachers. Yet, phonemes and morphemes are the simplest units of language. Still, those feel impossible to teach to 3-year-olds.  The answer lies in the medium. Pre-school children are ready to acquire even more complex entities than phonemes...

Presenting and teaching English vocabulary via Semantic Feature Analysis grids and matrixes (SFA)

Presenting and teaching English vocabulary via Semantic Feature Analysis grids and matrixes SFA  Text by: Evangelia Vassilakou  Traditional vocabulary instruction focuses on pre teaching either difficult or low frequency vocabulary. This can cause students to stop reading a text because of unfamiliar words. On the contrary, Semantic Feature Analysis (SFA) departs from a traditional vocabulary approach and effectively develops...

How To Engage Young Learners

We know that the essential ingredient that enables motivation to facilitate deep student learning is engagement. And as educators, we are very aware of how important it is for our learners to be engaged. Engagement has been defined as the extent to which students are connected to what they are learning, how they are learning it, and who they are learning...

Teaching Materials and Young Learners

The enormous amount of existing materials for the teaching of English to young learners might lead us to think that everything has been invented and nothing is left to be discovered in EFL. But when you are in a real classroom working with children you realise that not all existing materials are equally successful in the class. Why is that? Why do children...

Foreign Languages and Pre-Primary Students. Are We Overdoing It?

It comes as no surprise that the demands of our ever-developing society would at some point leave its mark on the generations which will succeed us. The necessity to harness a young individual’s true potential with the purpose of integrating it into the global machine has already taken its effect, as schools constantly update and enrich their syllabuses...

Lack of vocabulary=lack of extensive reading

lack of extensive readingThe approach to building basic vocabulary involves identification of the most basic vocabulary, the benefits of extensive reading, the strengths of explicit instruction in vocabulary and the importance of using word notebooks and dictionaries. English-language learners (ELLs) face a learning paradox: on one hand they need vocabulary to be able to read...

The factor of anxiety in Young Learners' classes

The factor of anxiety in Young Learners classes  As English teachers, we’re almost always on the lookout for new and interesting ways to stimulate our language learners. It was ELT author and researcher Stephen D. Krashen who gave us his Affective Filter hypothesis of Second or Foreign language acquisition. (Krashen – Terrell, 1983)   His hypothesis states, that conditions which promote low...

Teaching English to adults

Teaching English to adults has its own set of challenges and rewards for the EFL teacher but requires a whole range of different skills and qualifications. Their motivation is intrinsic which is a great advantage as this has been identified as one of the most important factors in determining successful language learning. The acquisition of a second...

How young is too young to learn a Foreign Language?

HOW YOUNG IS TOO YOUNG TOO LEARN A FOREIGN LANGUAGE  Quite often in a monolingual family we are confronted with the dilemma of what is the appropriate age for our kids to start learning a foreign language. Should they first be exposed to a new language as early as kindergarten or should we wait until the first years of primary school, when our little ones try to master the written form of their mother...

Teaching Young Learners: The age of Innocence

By Nancy Tasiopoulou, English Teacher, Doukas Primary School   Teaching young learners is a unique experience, as it brings together the use of art, music, games, storytelling and technology. Not one day in the kindergarten is the same with another, as the children’s spontaneous and inquisitive nature can lead the lesson to new paths of acquiring...

Teaching Adults and Classroom Management Issues

By Maroussa Pavli*      Are you teaching adults or thinking of doing so? Those of you who have already worked with adult learners can easily understand the relevance of the title of this article. Those who haven’t done this yet may doubt that classroom management is a topic to consider, but if you do read on, you’ll find out that everyday teaching...

ELT 2021 Influencers: Evangelia Vassilakou

Evangelia Vassilakou has a BA degree in Philosophy from Deree College, The American College of Greece and an MA degree in Applied Linguistics from Hellenic American University with a high distinction. She has also been nominated as a PhD candidate in Applied Linguistics (HAU). Evangelia is a committed and goal-driven educator with 20 years’ experience in...

Unleashing the potential of limericks: Humorous poetry for the EFL young learners

By Evangelia Vassilakou   Definition and general characteristics of limericks   Limericks are one of the most favourite poetic forms among children, and were popularized by Edward Lear. They originated in England the 18th or early 19th century. The fun of the limericks lies in their rollicking rhythm and broad humour. They are also easy to remember...

Teaching English to Adults

Teaching English to adults has its own set of challenges and rewards for the EFL teacher but requires a whole range of different skills and qualifications. Adult learners may not need a certificate or diploma; their motivation is intrinsic which is a great advantage as this has been identified as one of the most important factors in determining successful...

A class full of Young Learners: Teacher’s expectations and focal points in the EFL/ESL classroom

Characteristics of Young Learners      By Marina Siskou The conventional feeling towards the definition of “Young Learners” is that it is interchangeable with the concept of childhood.   Annamaria Pinter (2011) divides Young Learners into three groups.   The first group, preschool or early school years, is comprised of children who initiate...

Designing a course for adult learners: An analysis of the process and some practical tips

In my previous article I looked at the basic concepts in designing a course for adults. This article analyses the steps followed during this process and offers suggestions for each of those steps. The design process starts with an initial needs analysis followed by goal and objective setting, material selection, specification of the tasks to be used so that...

Teaching Young Learners

It takes a special person to teach English as a foreign language. It takes an even more special person to teach English as a foreign language to young children.  Young learners can be a real pleasure to teach because they do not feel stressed by their studies and approach everything with youthful innocence. At this point in their lives, they may not...

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