The 4th week of each month is our “Teachers Week” at Keats. During this week, we hold various teaching seminars and fun activities for Keats teachers. Each seminar has a unique focus, such as exchanging teaching experience, creative teaching methods, how to teach grammar, how to help students memorize new vocabulary, how to make Chinese learning easy and fun, how to give outdoor lessons etc. The seminars are led by experienced teachers and all participants have one week to prepare for their presentation.
One interesting topic for one of the seminars this week was “How to help students improve their Chinese in a very short time?” The teachers needed to share their experience/secrets in creating efficient in-classroom exercises, class structure arrangement, review and testing. In the end, the teachers needed to prepare a class simulation for other teachers. After one week of careful preparation, the teachers were fully ready for the seminar. One of the teachers shared her experience in helping students memorize new words. She split the words by characters and used the single characters to make another word which the student had learned. She them used these created words to make a sentence which explained the new word. In this way, the students can quickly recognize the sound of the character since the students learned this character before. The sound gave the students a hint of the new word they are memorizing. This method was tested to be very efficient and effective. The teacher excitedly told us that once she mentioned the sentences, her student can immediately tell her the word. Finally, the teachers designed the class simulation according to the student’s age, length of stay, characteristics, hobbies, goals, etc. Other teachers expressed that they learned a lot from their colleagues and would put what they have learned into action next week.
The management team couldn’t agree more that this method is a successful one and would like to promote this method in the next week’s teaching. The vice-president Joy Huang commented on this method and stated her suggestions on modifying this method based on different learning habits and goals.
Many teachers find that the Teachers Week is very helpful and meaningful for them to improve their Chinese teaching skills. Although they are all very experienced in teaching Chinese, continuous improvement in teaching is a life-long action for teachers, no matter in which subject. Keats School serves as a catalyst that integrates all effective and modern teaching methods to help Keats teachers increase their teaching ability from a very high starting point as if they were standing on the shoulders of giants. The Teachers Week is a week to share experience, to show wisdom, to learn new things, to improve ourselves, and to enjoy success.