The ESL market is awash with kindergarten texts. And yet we made our own. Why?
Let’s take a look at what we didn’t like about existing texts. And what we changed to make a kindergarten text WE (and our students) like through My English Book and Me 1 and 2.
Not challenging enough. Many texts introduce 3 - 5 words a unit. And the words are too easy.
Start English as soon as you can, kids learn like sponges. Everyone agrees with this. We don’t; kind of.
We ran a very popular Mummy and Me classes. One hour class: 20 minutes play with toys, 40 minutes songs, songs, songs and books. We had 4 classes, lots of students, smooth classes, everyone had fun, learned basic vocabulary, how to interact with others. Unfortunately, when kids "graduated" to our kinder classes, too many M&Me graduates
As school owners, we would recommend having rules. And not bending them.
For many reasons:
You are a business. To be professional, you must have rules.
2. Presumably you made the rules for a reason. If you CHANGE them easily, then why did you take the time to think about them and make them in the first place? You won’t see the cram schools
Despite the market being awash with phonics texts, we decided to make My English Book and Me 3.
How is My English Book and Me 3 different?
1. More than 1 anchor word per letter. My English Book and Me 3 introduces 4 anchor words per letter. (picture p. 30 from the CB)
After a [ fabulous! ] trial lesson, a potential student is often asked by Mom, “Did you have fun?”
This irritates me for several reasons.
Mom: YOU saw the lesson.
If YOU thought:
the lesson was fast - paced, interesting and enjoyable
my child WILL learn to read, write and speak English
it’s a well run school with good texts
Many people dream of opening their own English School. Well, you’re in luck. Japan makes it extremely easy to start a business. And the start up fees for opening an English School can be minimal.
My first piece of advice is to KEEP your job. Teach in your free time.
For us, that meant opening up two lessons (1 kindergarten and 1 elementary) on Thursday nights. And 2 lessons on Saturday morning.
When those 4 lessons become FULL,
Junior High School / High School Lessons:
The Goals. Students:
* build confidence
* Speak out. Speak up.
* Work together
* Build a warm class relationship
* Express opinions about a Variety of Topics
* Improve vocabulary and grammar to help with lessons at students’ Jr. High School / High School
In the 60 minute class:
We want the lesson to be mainly speaking time in pairs or groups of 3. There will also be
Returnees' English ability depends on a variety of factors: For example, personality; are they gregarious or shy? Did they attend an English speaking school? How long did they spend abroad? Did they live in an English speaking country? How old is the student, and crucially did they learn to read?
We always do a level check to determine which of our returnee classes is most suitable to join. We have many returnee lessons. There will be at least one that suits
Beginners are Beginners:
I am often asked by potential students, can my (for example) 2nd grade child join the lesson with his 5th grade sibling. I answer, IF they are both beginners, YES.
Why? Because beginners are beginners. It doesn’t matter if they are in 1st grade or in 6th grade. If they are NEW to English, then they will begin (like all elementary school students) on My English Book and Me 3 learning lots of vocabulary, phonics and grammar. So, YES, they can join the same b
Level Checks: What to Do:
At Dave and Amy English School, we have many returnees or students from other schools. We do a level check to decide the best lesson for them.
We check reading, writing, speaking and comprehension. It is best to begin easily and steadily challenge the child more. This allows the child to be comfortable and relaxed.
We begin by checking if the student understands