High school filter: Help me transition to teaching teens
August 29, 2017 5:03 AM   Subscribe

I'll be teaching teenagers in multi-age low-level ESL setting after years of elementary ed. Can you help me be an awesome high school teacher?

My main focus right now is thinking through a good classroom management system.

What are some strategies you use to manage behavior and organization in high school?

For those of you who have taught low-level ESL, and by that I mean newcomers who are completely new to English, what are some methods you use to establish trust and communicate rules and norms when there is a significant language barrier?

Any good high school and/or ESL teacher blogs or other resources that you recommend I check out?
posted by the thought-fox to Education (1 answer total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
If you haven't yet checked out Colorincolorado.org, do that. They're a bilingual (Spanish/English) site with tons of resources for teaching strategies.

Some of the best practices you can do to establish trust and communication are:
* embracing each student as an individual, not just as a kid who represents a certain culture
* ensure your room is language-rich and welcoming by having labels of items, etc. in the languages the kids speak -- so, the desk will have signs saying desk, stol, 辦公桌, biwo and so on.
* have a world map where the kids can note where they're from
* let tech be your friend by letting kids use phones or iPads or whatever to chat with each other via Google Translate and then let them share their conversations with other kids
* reach out to the families as often as you can and invite them in for coffee at least once a month
* get to know your district's resources for new families to help them feel like they're part of the culture

The most effective class management comes from having clear expectations and being consistent. What works well is having a very detailed posted schedule in multiple languages for referral. When in class, consistently refer to this schedule. Announce what's coming up and give them time to adjust to transitions. The more you do this, the easier it gets.

Remember that these kids are working far harder than kids with native language. Be sure to incorporate as many earned planned fun breaks as you can. Let kids pick videos they want to watch for the reward time.

Also, have fun with them. An enthusiastic teacher is fun to be around!
posted by yes I said yes I will Yes at 5:49 AM on August 29, 2017 [1 favorite]

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