English 4: Speech and Presentation

English 4 is the top of the pyramid of the core English classes taught in the first two years of the program with the Faculty of International Studies. Up to now, students have had classes in reading, writing, presentation skills, critical thinking, and communication. With English 4, we are building on all of those previous classes to help students improve their overall English abilities while providing them with opportunities to develop as critical thinkers and more purposeful communicators. They will also have the chance to develop research and ICT skills. The theme of this class is “Speech and Presentation.” The primary difference with other presentations students have done is that in this class, their goal is to teach content to their classmates and then provide and evaluate tasks they assign to their classmates to see how effective the lesson was.

Instead of using a textbook, we are using a Podcast for the main source of content. Everything Everywhere Daily provides students with listening/reading material on a variety of topics. Each episode ranges from 10~20 minutes. A weekly assignment is for students to listen to that podcast at least four times a week and record a spoken reaction to one of those episodes.

As project work, student groups have been assigned a month of episodes from which they must choose one to develop as 40-minute lesson they will teach to their classmates. With a learning goal firmly decided, students groups must:

  • Decide on some warm-up questions (5 minutes of their class time)
  • Make vocabulary flashcards using Quizlet
  • Prepare a lecture that teaches their content (10 minutes of their class time)
  • Introduce a class activity for their classmates to work on related to the learning goal (10 minutes of their class time)
  • Have a closing discussion (5 minutes of their class time)
  • Answer questions at the end of their lesson. (5 minutes of their class time)
  • Make, assign and evaluate a homework assignment using Google Forms/Microsoft Forms: grade the student submissions and return those grades to the teacher.

To demonstrate all of the above, the first four classes of this semester were spent learning all about bricks! A relatively “boring” subject was chosen to illustrate how anything can be made interesting with the right presentation. 

Student groups are just getting started on this project. I look forward to reporting on how it is going in my next post!