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bigmouth strikes again

Postby AmyJ » Wed Dec 04, 2013 2:50 pm

So I'm trying this new thing when people ask me if I speak any languages (other than English) I say "yes, I speak Welsh" - as I did tonight, for example, in the first session of my 'teaching English' course.

Now my graded assignment for the course is to teach a lesson for five Welsh verbs, with no mp3s (drats!), oh, and no English allowed.

Me and my big mouth. :shock:
"The sky is cold and the floor water is too hard to drink, but I have my handcoats and the spacelight is warm. Listen - the flappy planes are beeping in the stick towers."
"Those are all the wrong words for those things."
"Maybe. But the things themselves are alright, so who cares?"

-xkcd
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Re: bigmouth strikes again

Postby faithless78 » Wed Dec 04, 2013 4:33 pm

AmyJ wrote:Now my graded assignment for the course is to teach a lesson for five Welsh verbs, with no mp3s (drats!), oh, and no English allowed.

Hmmmm..... How are you going to teach Welsh verbs without using a base language?? Unless they will assume the target audience will already be Welsh speakers I can't see a way around this one!!!

But then surely, your Welsh is at a standard where you won't need mp3s anyway, right??
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Re: bigmouth strikes again

Postby essenbee » Wed Dec 04, 2013 5:23 pm

faithless78 wrote:... How are you going to teach Welsh verbs without using a base language?? ...

Mime, I guess?! Cerdded, yfed, bwyta, ayyb.

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Re: bigmouth strikes again

Postby chwaer wiwer » Wed Dec 04, 2013 6:32 pm

essenbee wrote:
faithless78 wrote:... How are you going to teach Welsh verbs without using a base language?? ...

Mime, I guess?!


You did dancing didn't you? That's one... and... ehm... yeah, pob lwc! I think it's a good idea to apply the SSIW mantra, don't worry! Try and have fun with it and pleeeease let us know how it goes :D
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Re: bigmouth strikes again

Postby Sionned » Wed Dec 04, 2013 7:54 pm

So presumably this is an exercise to help people in the class understand that you can teach a language without a "base language" to fall back on. I take it that your "teaching English" course is "... as a second language" and you might be expected to have a bunch of people with all different languages other than English. So how would you do that in English? Now translate that into Welsh! :D SSi all the way - DON'T WORRY, you'll be fine!
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Re: bigmouth strikes again

Postby Aran » Thu Dec 05, 2013 10:21 am

I'm taking it (with Sionned) that this is EFL?

I have a lot of sympathy for the attempts to build structures that let people teach English/etc without using the local language/s - but it just can't work as well as making the effort to learn enough of the local language/s to start from a base of real understanding for some key vocab/structures.

But hey. For maximum ease of the initial 'guess what I'm doing' presentation, I'd recommend rhedeg, cysgu, dawnsio, neidio and eistedd. Act these with just the verbs themselves. Then, with the aid of plenty of pointing, get them to echo, so when you say 'Dwi'n rhedeg' (pointing at yourself), they answer by pointing at you and saying 'Ti'n rhedeg!'. Run through the five two or three times quickly like that - then start pointing at random individuals and saying 'Ti'n cysgu!' until they get that they're meant to do some acting - then encourage them (it's just a reverse of the echoing, so most of them should pick up on it quite quickly) to say 'Dwi'n cysgu!' after you've pointed at them and said 'Ti'n cysgu!'.

Then get the brightest of them to come up and take your part, while you go sit in the audience and help lead the 'Ti'n rhedeg!' responses.

Then get a pair of them up to the front, and get them swapping 'Dwi'ns' and 'Ti'ns'. Then get the rest of them into pairs (point at the pair at the front, try holding up one finger on your right hand and one on your left and then bringing them together) and let it all descend briefly into a riot of bad acting and random shouting.

Then clap and point until they're all sitting down and quiet, do 'Dwi'n rhedeg' with minimum acting, make a 'you all' circle gesture and an 'on your feet' palms up gesture, and then try and get them saying 'Dwi'n rhedeg' with you (laugh and shake your head at the inevitable 'Ti'n rhedegs', and do a bit of 'Dwi'n rhedeg', 'you all' gesture and lead the 'Dwi'n rhedeg').

Once they've got the idea that they're meant to say what they're doing, run through the five verbs on a you/them basis, and then clap, bow, and sit down firmly.

Oh, and offer up a silent prayer of gratitude that we don't try and teach you like this with SSiW...:wink:

Pob lwc!
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Re: bigmouth strikes again

Postby AmyJ » Thu Dec 05, 2013 2:47 pm

Duly copied and pasted into my lesson plan, Aran - diolch!

Luckily it seems that I'll only have the five verbs to do in isolation, and I've been given 'rhedeg, cerdded, eistedd, sefyll, plygu', plus we HAVE to use flash cards for part of the lesson so it seems a bit more straight forward than I thought, though not sure about this whole flash cards buso to be honest.

Also, is there a Welsh equivalent of 'Simon Says'? "Mae Dafydd yn dweud"? :)

Anyway yes it's for ESL/EFL with the idea that you may not know your students' language(s)... all very interesting :)
"The sky is cold and the floor water is too hard to drink, but I have my handcoats and the spacelight is warm. Listen - the flappy planes are beeping in the stick towers."
"Those are all the wrong words for those things."
"Maybe. But the things themselves are alright, so who cares?"

-xkcd
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Re: bigmouth strikes again

Postby Aran » Thu Dec 05, 2013 4:31 pm

AmyJ wrote:Luckily it seems that I'll only have the five verbs to do in isolation


Ah, yes, nice of them to make it easier, er, sorry, I mean more difficult for you, because separate verbs like that just work oh so well together...[/knocking head against wall].

Oh, great, flashcards - because it's vital at this stage that learners don't focus entirely on speaking and understanding the words. I think I may just have to cry a little now.

Two suggestions depending on how revolutionary you're feeling:

1) Tell them that you've got your own list of verbs already, thank you, and you're sticking with them because they're more likely to make people laugh, and that will make people more likely to remember them. [Also, walking is actually quite tricky, because people will often look at where you're going, or get side-tracked by going/moving/looking for something/getting lost (when you come back to start WALKING again)/etc, and the more you try to emphasise that you are WALKING the less it looks like walking and the more it looks like John Cleese...] If they refuse to accept your laughter argument, put them firmly on your 'treat with suspicion' list.

2) Without saying anything about it in advance, go with the 'dwi'n/ti'n' stuff anyway, because that allows you to get one bit of learning happening often enough for them to start to feel confident with it, and then they're at least getting one bit right each time, and that in turns gives them more confidence to start to remember some of the verbs (which are harder to do often enough to make them easy).

And however they constrict you, remember that the more YOU talk, the less they'll remember, and the more THEY talk, the more they'll remember...:)

Pob lwc! And let us know how it goes...:)
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Re: bigmouth strikes again

Postby AmyJ » Sun Dec 08, 2013 1:07 am

Hmm... well, it went okaaaay. ish. Meaning it was an extremely well-planned lesson that met all the criteria of the course and taught absolutely nobody to speak Welsh. Surprised? :roll:

I'm quite disappointed to be honest - wish I'd put my foot down about not having words on the flashcards because they just confused people about the sounds, and also you'd ask a question and then see everyone craning their heads to look at the cards behind you for the answer. Definitely not the SSiW way!

But then of course having done a lesson this way I've learnt/reinforced what I really, really don't want to do as English teacher, so there's always a positive :D (and we had fun anyway...)
"The sky is cold and the floor water is too hard to drink, but I have my handcoats and the spacelight is warm. Listen - the flappy planes are beeping in the stick towers."
"Those are all the wrong words for those things."
"Maybe. But the things themselves are alright, so who cares?"

-xkcd
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Re: bigmouth strikes again

Postby Aran » Sun Dec 08, 2013 6:50 pm

AmyJ wrote:But then of course having done a lesson this way I've learnt/reinforced what I really, really don't want to do as English teacher, so there's always a positive :D (and we had fun anyway...)


That kind of stuff's always valuable...:)

When are you likely to be in the thick of it, and what languages are your students likely to have? Maybe we'll have some bits of SaySomethinginEnglish ready in time to be of help as a self-guided homework extra kind of thang...:)
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