Ask Ibaraki JET PAs #009

Question:

What should ALTs do with the English Club?

Answer:

Answered by: Emily

Schools have English clubs for many different purposes. Depending on the objectives of the students and JTE, English clubs can focus on activities ranging from games, to English discussion practice, to preparation for things like speech contests, Interactive Forum,and the Rose Cup for debate. Some ALTs even help students prepare for standardized English exams in English club, while at others schools, students may enjoy just playing card games and having contact with the ALT. Some of the most common English Club activities include:

–       Playing classic English games like Mad-Libs, Pictionary, Charades, Taboo, etc.

–       Watching and discussing English movies.

–       Making cultural crafts together (Carving Pumpkins, Making Gingerbread Houses, Dying Easter Eggs, Making “fortune tellers” with English fortunes, etc.)

–       Reading and discussing articles in English (news articles might be too difficult for some students, but things like horoscopes or personality quizzes tend to be a bit easier to use and more fun.)

If you’re just starting out with an English club and are trying to figure out what to do, it’s also a good idea to sit down with your students and your JTE and have a conversation about what the goals are for the club. (At some schools it may be difficult for the students to communicate fully about their club goals in English, and having a JTE be part of the conversation can help bridge the communication gap.) In addition to discussing club goals, some things to find out are:

–       What are the club members’ interests? (Favorite Movies and TV shows in particular can become great ideas for “movie afternoons”)

–       What clubs were they in Junior High School, if any?

–       Have any of the club members participated in things like Rose Cup, Interactive Forum, etc, before?

Having information about your club members’ interests, hobbies, and past experiences can make it easier to find or make activities that they will enjoy.

If you’re the leader of an already-established English club and you’re looking for some fresh ideas, there are also many different resources available online. The Mie JET page (http://www.miejets.org/gb/index.php?title=English_Club) has a list of low-prep games, as well as ideas for higher-level activities. You can also look on the Ibaraki JET and Ibaraki ☆ JETs facebook pages for recent discussions (posted by your favorite PA!) about what to do in English club. -> (https://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/2249994931/?fref=ts)

Good Luck!

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