TESOL Certificate Programs

Observation Notebook

Observation Report
Forms for inclusion in the Observation Notebook must be typed

Name of Observer Tomomi Yuma
Date October 10
Observation Environment

Observation # 8
Class Level/Number (Beg./Int./Adv.) Intermediate (400 level) Teacher Debbie Peterson

(include URL if the class was online)

Class Skill/Content

Classroom

Grammar

Focus on relevant areas from the “What Can Be Observed” handout. Notice how the teacher handles these areas during the class. OBJECTIVE OF THE LESSON: Students will recognize when to use simple past and past progressive.

Notes while observing:

Another paper

(continue on back)

Last Updated: 11/5/2013 8:00 PM

TESOL Certificate Programs
Observation Notebook
What did you learn about teaching or learning from this lesson? Discuss your observation focus, and the theory you have studied in your TESOL classes. Consider the three levels of teacher reflection (surface, pedagogical, critical). (100-200 words)

In this lesson, explicit grammar instruction was given. The teacher explained how to use simple past and past progressive with grammatical terms and timeline charts. This kind of instruction is seen in the Grammar Translation Method, which has been criticized since the Direct Method became popular. The explicit explanation has been criticized because it focuses only on forms. This cannot help students communicate in the target language. However, the instruction in this class included a lot of examples and tasks in which students practice how to use the target in writing. At the end, students would write their own stories with the target forms. These activities which follow the explicit explanation help students use English correctly in a real situation. Teachers should think what kinds of tasks they use in class, not whether they provide explicit grammar rules or not. In EFL contexts like Japan, teachers tend to give explicit explanation in Japanese and only mechanical drills. This traditional type of instruction has also been criticized in Japan. The Government has tried to force teachers to give an English lesson only in English. However, as I discussed above, the problem is not explicit instruction in Japanese, but the lack of practice which helps students to use the target form after they understand it. In my future teaching, I want to use many English examples and various tasks so that students can use English in a real situation.

Last Updated: 11/5/2013 8:00 PM

TESOL Certificate Programs
Observation Notebook
What activities/techniques from this class do you want to remember for your own teaching practice? Discuss specific ways in which you could apply the techniques and methods you saw. Discuss your future teaching environment and your students’ needs and goals. (100-200 words)

During the pair activities, music was played in the classroom. Because of the music, students looked relaxed and comfortable. Music lowered students’ affective filter and facilitated their learning. Students always feel anxious about English lessons. They are afraid of making mistakes and working with people who they do not know well. These fears can be eliminated by music, which makes the atmosphere more casual. The teacher in this class stopped music when she started to explain to the whole class. This helped students switch the mode and concentrate on the teacher’s explanation. If she continues to use this on and off technique in the class, students will get used to it and understand what to do from music. She will not have to do give instruction with words, like “stop!” and “look at the board and listen to me”. Playing music in the class is effective, but it also can prevent some students from concentrating on tasks. Some students prefer a quiet environment. Teachers need to consider individual preference and learning styles.

Last Updated: 11/5/2013 8:00 PM