We find that our students are progressing more quickly these days. We have many elementary students on Jr. High School texts. We use the English File series with Jr. High kids, higher level returnees, adult students, and NOW higher level elementary students. The text is comprehensive: covering vocabulary, grammar. listening and speaking activities in the class book and home book.
Initially, the texts appear daunting, and perhaps boring. Therefore, we begin with the easier, do-able activities. For example, unravelling the spelling of numbers; the completion of a series of days. When students realize they can easily do these activities, they become highly motivated and want to complete as much as possible in class.
We also take away the table. In kindergarten and elementary lessons, a table is essential for the various puzzles and card games. With the higher level classes, the absence of a table helps with pair work: switching partners more easily and actually looking at each other in activities. While students do face to face activities, the teacher can easily move behind students, helping and hinting if necessary.
In our lessons there is a lot of pair work. Students do vocabulary and communication activities together and help each fix grammar / spelling mistakes in homework. These texts often use advanced vocabulary which requires lots of repetition. Frequent fixing of mistakes together really seems to build good vocabularies in our students. We like to pair similar level students so that there isn’t a dominant student. We find students really enjoy the increased speaking time in a relaxed setting.
In short, the students like leveling up and changing. In the transition from kindergarten to elementary lessons, we drop singing and add phonics. In the transition from elementary to Jr. High lessons we drop the table and focus more on speaking / listening / grammar and vocabulary activities in pairs. Keep in mind, we level capable students up when they are ready. So there are many elementary students in Jr. High School style lessons.
How do you change your lesson style from elementary to Jr. High School?