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On Textbooks, Supplementing and Digressing....

I believe that it is a good idea to break the class up at certain points in the lesson by introducing something completely new, different and useful to the students (the audience you are teaching to will dictate the topic of interest you introduce).

For example; if you are teaching a 2 hour lesson, you may want to take 10 or 5 minutes in the middle or end to go off track, change the pace. If so you could ask the students to close their textbooks and pass them a handout, or use the whiteboard to introduce for example; Today’s Phrasal Verb – too boring for your group? Well how about, “Today’s pickup lines and dating talk” “Today’s Cool Phrase.” You are limited by your own imagination and the rules of your school, appropriateness is the key.

This will have the effect of making your lesson more interesting and bringing some life back in to the class after time starts to wear on them. It nay also be used as a fun wrap up to the lesson.

I have personally spoke to two of the most famous and respected textbook writers in the English / Second Language Profession in the whole world, namely David Nunan and Jack C Richards. Both made similar comments that no textbook is complete for any given situation and no teacher should be limited to a textbook. Each textbook must be supplemented, parts omitted, sections modified and sometimes completely ignored in order to effectively instruct. A textbook gives a well researched structure to guide your lesson, however as each student is different and by the very nature of learning a language, people will learn things and be exposed to things at different rates, different times and for different reasons.

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