Classroom Management 2

ESL Teaching Strategies

by Devanche Chauhan

ESl Teaching Strategies – What is important for Classroom Management?
You can control a classroom through: eye contact, gesture and voice.

1. Good Eye Contact is essential to getting student attention. Eye contact can be used:

-To give individual attention as well as to check that all students are involved in participating

-To ensure that students understand what they are supposed to

-To indicate who is to speak

-To indicate that something is correct or incorrect

-To encourage participation and contribution

– To signal start / stop / continue

However, eye contact should be avoided in during an activity which is not teacher centered, example — role play or if the focus is fluency.

(Pictured above: Some of the Gods of Daiyuzan Temple in Minamiashigara, Kanagawa)

ESL Teaching Strategies – Classroom Management — Using Gestures

2. Good Gestures can be effective and useful –

-To convey the meaning of the language.

-To add variety and create visual interest / impact

-To re-enforce instructions

-To reduce need of verbal explanation

– To increase lesson pace

Think of what gestures you could use to express:


– Stop

– Good

– Not right

-Nearly right

-Repeat in chorus

– Get into pairs

-Unusual / great idea

Classroom Management — Voice Usage

3. Voice

-A teacher’s voice must be well modulated and possess clarity, range and variety to make a lesson effective and understood by all.

The greater variation, the more effective a class. Voice alteration can enliven or quiet a class.

-The voice should adapt according to the circumstance: is it an individual lesson or a group, adults or young children?

-An effective teacher will also vary the complexity of the language to suit the level and ability of the student.

Classroom Management — Instructions

4. Giving Instructions. Make your instructions more effective.

-Use simple language, with a consistent set of words for the same instruction.

– Reinforce instructions with visual realia, mime, gestures, pictures, board work, examples and demonstration.

– Check whether instructions have been understood — asking students to explain it back to you is more effective than mere questioning ‘Have you understood?’

Classroom Management — Maintaining Balance

5. The balance between Teacher Talk Time and Student Talk Time depends on the activity, lesson type and student level.

– TTT is a vital component of learning a language and providing the student with a natural and correct model of the language.

– TTT will be more while:

o Providing input / presenting / checking / explaining

o Giving instructions for activities

o However, try to keep TTT minimal. Avoid unnecessary TTT:

o Adapt the language to accommodate the level of the students

o Use gestures / pictures / mimes to cut down on lengthy explanations

Classroom Management — Board Usage

6. Board-work is essential but the time spent with your back to the class should be minimal. You can do this by:

-Using an Over-head projector-Preparing picture cards and charts in advance-Writing while students are engaged in a different activity.-Having board-work ready before students enter (cover with a sheet if you don’t want students to see it immediately)

Whatever you do, be sure that it is clear and legible all the way till the last row of students.

About kintaro63

Writer and teacher in Japan
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