How to improve communicaton in a language class (language exchange session). Part 1.

making communication during language exchange better

Good communication is one of the most important components of any language lesson or a language exchange session. Without it educators can’t provide learners as many studying opportunities as the limited lesson time affords.

Student interaction with each other and with a teacher is impossible without friendly atmosphere. Therefore, achieving genuine communication should be the main goal of class management.

There are some specific challenges that can make communication in the foreign language classroom especially difficult. Language barrier and cultural differences are the main obstacles that may prevent learners and educators from effective communication.

The goal of this article is to describe the techniques that help to establish high-professional, yet warm relationships during your lesson or a less formal language exchange conversation.

The term “classroom management” is defined in many different ways. According to research, there are dozens of concepts to consider. These include, for example: lesson preparation, educational technology, grouping procedures and dealing with problem behavior.

Lesson Planning

The importance of lesson planning can’t be overestimated. Educators should always have enough appropriate tasks, exercises and activities that will help them keep students engaged and busy. Otherwise, there is opportunity for students’ misbehavior (and miscommunication). When preparing in-class activities, a teacher should keep in mind the students’ needs in classroom and their real lives outside it. This is crucial for building environment for productive interaction. If a teacher is not sincerely interested in his or her student, the latter feels it immediately, and the communication breaks down.

Good Visual Presentation

All materials, games and other activities used in class should be designed to create a visual, auditory and kinesthetic presentation. Different students may need different kind of support to understand the lesson content and to react to it. To build communication with all students in the classroom, a teacher needs to use visual aids (cue cards, drawings, flashcards, photographs, etc.) to provide clues to meaning. However, it may be not enough. It is also important to use gestures, mime or act out the meaning of your message. Sometimes it may be necessary to repeat these actions or to paraphrase some sentences. Varying voice and exaggerating emotions are also important techniques that help to develop effective communication.

Good Structure

Although teachers are encouraged to use various different activities in class, it is still important to keep lessons clearly structured. Appropriate sequencing of activities is vital for learning success and for interaction. The well-prepared lesson is a “coherent whole” within which students can work and communicate.

To continue reading about how to improve in-class communication.

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