Around the half-way point of the summer term
Hello. We are around the half-way point of the summer term here at HIUC Osaka. Things are going well, and the students are making steady progress.
My level 1 integrated skills class has been busy. Last week, each student gave a short presentation about an American holiday. For example, one presentation was about Easter, one was about Halloween, another was about President’s Day, and another was about Kwanzaa. There were 13 presentations about 13 different holidays. Each presentation was between 90 seconds and two and a half minutes long. I was glad to see that every student had better eye contact this time. They looked at the audience and only at their notes a few times. Many of the students also spoke pretty smoothly. A few people needed a little more practice, but most of them were really good. Next time, we will focus on speaking a little more loudly and clearly.
Next week, they will do another presentation. Their next presentation is about an American artist or actor. They can decide who they want to talk about. Then they have to do some research about that person. The students need to use English websites and make notes about what they read. They also have to answer seven questions. Then they need to use their notes and the answers to the questions to make their presentation. This week, they are doing the research and writing their speeches. Towards the end of next week, they will give their presentations.
We have also been working on using the ‘past tense’. The students had to read a paragraph in the preset tense, and then re-write it in the past tense. They also had to write a paragraph about a past experience. For example, one student wrote abut her trip to Guam, another student wrote about her trip to Thailand, and another student wrote about his trip to Okinawa. Next, the students exchanged papers. Each student took another student’s paragraph. Then they read the paragraph and tried to fix it. They had to check the title, topic sentence, conclusion sentence, and the verbs. Checking and fixing a paragraph is a difficult thing to do, but it is an important to skill to practice. It is a skill that all students who go to college need to learn.
We are also continuing to work on building our vocabulary. The students had a set of pictures to look at. They had to think about what words they have learnt. Then they had to match one or more words with each picture. Then they had to make a sentence for each picture. Each sentence had to have one of the words we have studied in it. It is important to use words again and again. That is the easiest way to learn them. I hope this helps them on their vocabulary quiz next week.