I am to start teaching English Conversation classes soon: What can I do?

Mar 9, 2020
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I had hoped my university would postpone classes but it seems not.
So...
Require that anyone with cough, sore throat, fever, do not come to class.
Have students sit >1m apart
Have students wear masks (this will make comprehension difficult, and they are sold out)
Have students sit back to back rather than facing each other
Require temperature checks and insist that anyone >X can't come to class. (And use an infrared temperature sensor on the students' foreheads?)
Require hand washing before class.
Ask for a bigger classroom.
Ask students to wear gloves (I can provide these, since they haven't sold out)

Any other suggestions please?
 

Lutfij

Moderator
Jan 29, 2020
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If I were you, I'd have a demonstration of how to securely wear a mask prior to your students entering your class. This can happen via a video which you can send out to students for your class or made as a public announcement(via a FB group or a social media post share). You should also ask your students to maintain the same sort of social distancing tactics outside of class, prior to entering class.

Isn't there an option to do your class online via video conferencing? It might be far fetched but it might be a possibility...?
 
Mar 9, 2020
48
5
55
If I were you, I'd have a demonstration of how to securely wear a mask prior to your students entering your class. This can happen via a video which you can send out to students for your class or made as a public announcement(via a FB group or a social media post share). You should also ask your students to maintain the same sort of social distancing tactics outside of class, prior to entering class.
Thank you. Good idea. I will look into videos on masks and social distancing, in Japanese.

Isn't there an option to do your class online via video conferencing? It might be far fetched but it might be a possibility...?
I have thought of that myself but I don't know of the software that allows me to set up a lot of online pair work, that I could listen, or ideally watch, in to.

If anyone knows, please let me know.
 
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Lutfij

Moderator
Jan 29, 2020
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Skype conversation? That way you could have the camera perched up in the podium(or mid of class, with the board and you in good line of sight) and your students can all login to the conversation. This way you're able to attend the premises and your students attend classes.

I'm not sure how your administration will handle the lack of physical presence though. I'm sure you will also get more information from this lovely community. With regards to tech, a mid ranged Logitech camera and a tripod paired with your laptop will help you get things started.

Also, don't thank me, it's more of a duty to see humanity move forward, being a member of society ;) but out of courtesy, you're welcome, sir!
 
Mar 9, 2020
48
5
55
Skype conversation? That way you could have the camera perched up in the podium(or mid of class, with the board and you in good line of sight) and your students can all login to the conversation.
Thank you. But alas, an important thing in conversation classes is to reduce teacher talking time and increase student talking time. If the students could login to the (singular) conversation there would be only one conversation, between me and one of the 20-30 students. This means that the conversations/interactions need to be plural, between the many (10-15) pairs of students, with me monitoring.

I don't know how to set up a lot of pairs on Skype or any other application.
 

Lutfij

Moderator
Jan 29, 2020
17
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35
Google has an app/option for Meet, this will allow you to have an active conversation with every person in a singular room, in spite of having your students login.

You could look into this:
 
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Mar 9, 2020
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Thank you very much indeed!

I am having a look. But I think while it allows the teacher to speak to all the students in separate rooms, I need there to be n/2 rooms for pairs of students to talk to each other, and for me to be able to eavesdrop on each room at a time.

Zoom seems to be more advanced. Yes. There is a function called "breakout rooms" that allows one to set up a settable number of rooms including pair rooms, which can be assigned randomly, and not include the admin (me), who can peek in the other rooms. From the 25 minute point in this video:
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6i-NA563Ojk

Zoom's basic plan is free, and the 40 minute meeting-length restriction is now waived for those combating the virus.

If I can't work it out we will be going live. Our term starts on the 10th. I may use the first lecture or two to just speak, and start conversation when the weather is warm since I hear that warmer weather should (I hope, I am not a doctor) help.

Here is the Zoom Cloud Meetings Android App
Here is the Zoom Cloud Meetings iPhone App

I tried meeting myself, on computer and smart phone, and it worked quite well with ample bandwidth on my old Samsung S4 4LTE(?) phone.
https://flic.kr/p/2iFXfDG View: https://www.flickr.com/photos/nihonbunka/49678881386
 
Last edited:
Jan 9, 2020
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There're plenty of free alternatives to Zoom. Our English teacher is using Jitsi-Meet. She analyzes speaker stats and can check which students were more active during the debates / pimion speaking tasks. I hired a private TEFL tutor a couple of weeks ago and he's teaching me via BigBlueButton.
 

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