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How To Teach Adults
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Because adults have a short concentration span, it is important to have
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Hi. I'm Deborah, and I'm from Greater London Tutors and I teach foreign languages and English as a second language. And today, I'm going to give you some tips on how to teach. One of the great things about teaching adults is that they've made the decision to be there, to be in your class, to come and study. They want to be there. And it's not really like teaching children that - you know - they have to go to school and sometimes they feel bad being forced to do something. You know, adults are there on their own accord. So the great thing is that it's very unusual to have discipline problems with adults. However, when you teach adults, it's very important to have a lot of variety - as with children. Adults also have a short concentration span, so it's important to have a lot of variety in your lessons. And it's also very important not to be patronizing with them but also to respect that relationship that you are the teacher and they are the students. I've often taught people who were the same age as me, even older, and so you have a different kind of rapport with them than you would if you're teaching children. And so you can't be patronizing with them. It is more like teaching one of your friends but at the same time, you can't be friends because you are the teacher. They need to respect that and they need to know when they have to be quiet and listen. The other important thing when teaching adults is to use subjects that are relevant to them. So, I for example had taught adults from 18 up to 80. And now, if I was teaching something like "How to talk to your child's teacher", "Questions to ask at parents evening", that's not going to be very relevant to my students who are in their early twenties, for example. So you really got to think carefully, especially when you've got a mixed group, a mixed age group, what subjects are going to interest them. And I find that with foreign language students, anything that gives them an insight into British culture, anything that's really relevant that's happening now, they absolutely love. And so that would really be my top tip. Make the material relevant. Adults like doing a lot of group work, just like children. And you also need to take into account different learning styles. It's very easy to fall into the trap of thinking that adults are going to listen to you speak for X amount of time. But not everyone has good auditory skill so it's very important to make sure that you do a lot of visual work and hands-on work. So, those are my tips for teaching adults. .
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