Teaching Foreign Language Tips
Whether you are a MFL teacher in a London school or a tutor helping students with their language studies, you have seen first-hand how some pupils get discouraged from learning a new language.
World Class Teachers offer tips for teaching a foreign language to pupils who see MFL studies as a challenge.
Remember, learning a language isn’t easy for everyone.
While London has many bilingual and multilingual inhabitants, many students may not grasp a new language as easily as others. From figuring out grammar to remembering vocabulary from the beginning of the term or year, there are many obstacles for students.
Highlight real-time benefits of learning a foreign language.
Students are repeatedly told that learning a new language will help their CVs and get them into good universities; for many this is not motivation but added pressure for the future. Instead, focus on cultural elements and benefits of their interests.
Most students will want to travel, and whether they are learning Japanese, Spanish or something in between, incorporating their desire to travel in your lessons will help keep them on travel.
Have students that already know they want to study abroad in Spain in university or travel around South America during a gap year? That is the perfect incentive to mastering the basics and relevant travel vocabulary.
If students want to learn the language(s) of their parent(s) or grandparent(s), suggest that they practise what they learn each day with a different family member. This way their path to proficiency can be a welcomed surprise and may be a more useful incentive for the pupil.
Use technology to complement language learning.
With all sorts of apps created every day, there are plenty of apps to help your students learn the language you are teaching. Avoid the ones that consist of only flashcards, unless your aim is to help improve vocabulary.
Duolingo currently offers French, Spanish, German, Italian, Danish, Irish, Dutch, Swedish and Portuguese to native English speakers and are constantly adding more languages. While some of the content of the sentences may not be as useful as others – how often do you really need to say “the elephant drinks milk?” – the app forces students to construct written and verbal sentences.
Show parts of familiar films dubbed over in the language you are teaching; this way your students already know the context of each scene and can subconsciously connect phrases in both languages.
Looking for your next role as a MFL teacher? Take a look at our available teaching jobs in London.