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Ideas for teaching brats?

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
Every Monday I have to teach kids in a school for two 40 minute sessions. I dread Monday afternoons because the kids are so badly behaved. They don't respect me at all and it's chaos. I really struggle to think of things to do with them. I'm supposed to be teaching them English and doing communicative activities. But it's impossible to give out instructions. They just don't listen.

Does anyone have any ideas of things I could do with them? The best thing seems to be just to dole out worksheets. I've tried doing songs and films but it doesn't work and frankly, they don't deserve to do anything fun like that, and when I bring my laptop in, they poke at it and I don't want it to get damaged.

I'm trying to think of what to do with them tomorrow and have no idea. I've created one worksheet but that will take them about 5 minutes and I still have 75 more to fill. Does anyone have any ideas?

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Hey,

    Have you tried any real shock tactics to get their attention e.g. using a whistle to call silence, or just walking out of the room? or just sitting at your desk and getting on with something.
    Depending on the age of the kids they usually sort of think yeah this is great shes letting us get away with it then the longer you sit there and ignore them they start to think, shit, what's she playing at here!

    I can think of loads of things to suggest, but all the things require you to get the children's attention to you can set an activity or explain rules etc. You really ought to sort and work on that first. Also, without being rude they are going to get rowdy and naughty if you just shove the easy options of worksheets in their faces. You need to be more creative than that but I do completly understand that without that good behaviour from the kids in the first place it is very very hard to do anything with them.

    Importantly, is how old are the children? How many children do you have? Are you meant to be achieving anything in that 40mins or are you just basically filling time?

    :-)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Thanks for the reply :)

    They are 13 and 14, and I have 17 of them.


    I've tried to do creative and fun stuff with them but it doesn't work and I can't keep putting in hours of effort for them. I know a lot of fun things to do with kids and have experience with teenagers but I've never encountered ones like this - it's a private school that is renowned for having a lot of spoiled brats. Their previous teacher quit because they were so bad and he had also resorted to doling out worksheets - he was far more experienced than I am.

    The reason I am there is supposedly to supplement what they do in their main English classes - which is fine, but the school is a shambles and I have no idea what they are studying in their regular classes. So it's a bit of a guessing game. Sometimes I choose work that is too hard and sometimes it's way too easy. I actually feel sick when I'm on my way there.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Is there no kind of detention system or anything at the school? I would have a word with the head of department. Clearly there is a problem here if the other teacher left also and this needs to be bought to someone's attention so some kind of discipline system can be implemented, detention, calling parents etc.

    I know it is hard given that it is hard to get their attention in the first place, but try dividing the lesson up into 10 minute sections with a different task for each section. Maybe try tasks where they each HAVE to feed back an answer/write an answer on the board, maybe that will motivate at least some of them not to look stupid in front of the whole class. Also try moving them around, e.g. making the worst offenders sit right at the front of the class with you. You could also try some form of positive reinforcement, like maybe give out sweets to those that actually do what you ask them - our German teacher used to do this with smarties, it worked a treat.

    I don't know exactly what your involvement is with the school, but you should be treated and respected as much as a regular teacher and should expect to receive the same kind of support, which clearly you're not getting at the moment and it isn't really on. Hope things improve for you soon!
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    People will be more involved if they feel they are part of the decision making process, why don't you actually ask them what they'd like to learn?

    I did a course a few months ago helping people to learn English and I actually asked them what kind of things the needed to know. One student for example was a policeman and wanted to know English swear words and insults so he could tell if someone was actually insulting him on the job when they're speaking in English. Ad also to make sure he didn't use gestures like two finger which might be offensive to the English but not to them.

    Another fella wanted tips on how to chat up girls ..:)

    Whilst a woman wanted tips with regards to travel.

    Try actually asking them what they're interested in learning..
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    DG wrote: »
    People will be more involved if they feel they are part of the decision making process, why don't you actually ask them what they'd like to learn?

    I did a course a few months ago helping people to learn English and I actually asked them what kind of things the needed to know. One student for example was a policeman and wanted to know English swear words and insults so he could tell if someone was actually insulting him on the job when they're speaking in English. Ad also to make sure he didn't use gestures like two finger which might be offensive to the English but not to them.

    Another fella wanted tips on how to chat up girls ..:)

    Whilst a woman wanted tips with regards to travel.

    Try actually asking them what they're interested in learning..

    My only issue with this (although I am not a teacher, I am applying to train to become one!) is that this may give the impression that she doesn't know what she is doing, and although Katchika feels like they don't respect her, they probably still perceive her as a teacher whereas asking unruley kids what they want to learn could get some responses which may embarrass and downdress her infront of the whole class i.e. the more confident, smarmy little git piping up with something totally irrelevant to get a laugh out of the others and a rise out of her. You probably worked with adults who came to you of their own accord wanting to learn English. The group she is dealing with are obviously exploiting the time to mess around and possibly perceive her as a 'soft touch' in a subject that they HAVE to attend.

    Maybe researching more into 13/14 year olds interests and creating work based on it. I'm not sure what activities you need to do - if it's looking at language, take an article from hello! magazine, which they would expect and find amusing but also might click with, and work something around that and try to meet them with things they're interested in. I'm sorry I'm not more useful, I appreciate it's hard but I think you're lacking a lot of support when possibly your work could supplement their current english lessons. There needs to be more communication across the department and I think you need to get that support.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    maybe doing something active with them that demands their attention such as throwing a ball to each other and saying their favourite activity in english when they have the ball?
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