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Dealing with large classes of mixed ability

Mixed classes usually comprise students who have arrived at varying levels of achievement.

This does not mean that the weakest at speaking are not as capable at language learning.

Some may have had no English at primary school while others may have had three years.


Producing tasks which all students can complete.

Use mainly open-ended tasks where learners brainstorm and contribute what they know. Give tasks which have a core part that everyone has to finish and optional extra questions too. Try mainly collaborative tasks with small groups of mixed ability so they help each other and pool ideas/skills.

Some able students finish first and get bored and disruptive.

There is a wide range of levels and you risk teaching three different lessons.

Some need revision and the others dont. Some texts and listening are too easy for some.

Make revision into a team/pair game. Choose content/topics very interesting for the age range so the ideas hold their interest.



Teacher greets Students and asks them their condition. Good morning class and how are you today?

Teacher tells the Students about the topic for today lesson. Today we are going to learn about recycle

Teacher asks the Students to seat in a group of four according to the name list on the table. Cluster grouping has been used in this session. In each group there will be Students from mixed abilities. The groups are based on Students previous examination results. Before we start our lesson, I want you to seat in a group of four according to the name list on each group table. Now, move to your seat.