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Year 5 interview lesson observation- EAL?

Discussion in 'Mathematics' started by treespirit, May 20, 2011.

  1. Hi ,
    Does anyone have any good ideas for differentiating for EAL? Or indeed any ideas at all?! The remit for this interview observation is ..' a short lesson to approx. 25 Year 5 pupils, diffferentiated to meet the needs of pupils with a broad range of ability and a number of pupils with EAL and should have a ltiercay or numeracy focus'.
    I would love to do something fun, but am presently stuck- I haven't worked with this age group for a good while.
    Your ideas would be most welcome! I shall post some of my own to see what you might think...
  2. And they are likely to be tough kids behaviourally...
  3. Tandy

    Tandy New commenter


    To be able to help, you'll need to provide more details.

    What is the break down of the class? Which languages are first languages? If you do not already know this, then contact the school immediately and ask for the breakdown. If you were the class teacher, you would not prepare a lesson without knowing this information, so you should not teach an interview lesson without it either - it's not fair on the kids.

    Once you know which languages are spoken and you have decided what topic you want to teach, I might be able to provide you with materials in the required languages

  4. Right thanks, I'm onto it.
  5. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    Whether you need materials in their first language rather depends on their stage of learning English. With some EAL pupils, it's enough to make sure that the language demands are reduced - new words explained, examples so they can take their cue from those, etc. Opportunities to rehearse language are good: for instance, after a lesson on ratio, I got each child to come up with a sentence along the lines of "the ratio of blue shirts to green shirts is..."
  6. I know it's closed now, multiverse.ac.uk had some good ideas I think. If you just go to the site and follow the redirect link, all the old resources are still there - but nothing new is being added anymore.
    (I've only ever used the site on a very general level for parts of my own training - but a few primary colleagues I know swear by it.)
  7. What have you been doing for EAL pupils in your other lessons?
    The focus on EAL provision (Or MENA) seems to change frequently but essentially you dont know these kids so you shouldnt be expected to know their every need if you are meeting them for the first time.
    A generic collection of words you may use is about the best you can do IMO as you will not know every lingo they speak and certainly (as stated) not know what level they are at with their English.
    You should not be expected to have a clue either.
    emaths has some good resources
  8. I haven't worked with EAL children for a while at all.
    I asked the head what the breakdown of the class is: she didn't tell me their languages but she did tell me there are 8 EAL, 7 SEN (3 school action), 50% are at or above national levels, 50% are below.

    Was thinking of creating a character description lesson, but am not feeling particularly confident about how to pull that off. I was also thinking about acting in role as a policeman to create a police report, using particular physical evidence but don't know if I could pull it off? Anyone with any detailed ideas? As soon as I am faced with an interview I find my creativity just completely dries up.
  9. Tandy

    Tandy New commenter

    She wouldn't tell you what languages the kids speak?

    Then why on earth would you want to go to an interview at a school run by someone like that? Why the hell does she think she has the right to simply waste the time of those kids? It really cheeses me off that so many people think that an interview means you can just steal away time from learning. What utter nonsense.

    You (or anyone else) should not be teaching a class when you don't understand the needs of the students. Headteachers should not be treating interviews like some humiliating and unrealistic experience for the interviewee. Would she expect her staff to teach kids without them knowing what language background they have? I hope not.

    Personally I would tell her to shove the job and look for someone as narrow minded and pompous as herself to fill the post.

    And what about the SEN kids? What are their needs? Would she not bother to tell you if a child is blind or in a wheelchair or...?


    Anyway, as much as I think she is a (insert own expletive here), I guess that isn't helping you with planning a lesson - but frankly, as an inspector, when judge a lesson I would absolutely expect to see that individual needs and backgrounds were catered for. Why would a headteacher set you up to fail? Avoid like the plague

    hplovegame48 likes this.
  10. Hi Tandy.
    In a way I actually see why they might have done this. It creates a level playing field for all candidates and will really bring out the craft of a teacher who has a kid in front them who simply 'dont ged it'
    I believe its a nice situation for good teachers to be creative and look for new ways on the run of how to get the point over to the kid rather than simply leaving them with a bunch of printed materials.
    I think if a school doesnt give it to a teacher who has the job then thats bad but I think I see the logic in this one. I remember an interview I had about 4 years ago and I asked who were the higher and lower ability pupils in a 20 minute observation so I could target them.
    "You pick them out" was the response which on the face of it was strange but I fully appreciate what the logic was
  11. I agree with Betamale. Prepare as much as you can, and have a few strategies to handle difficulties as and when they come up. Also, be ready to discuss (in the interview) what else you would have liked to have known and how this would have changed/added to your planning.
  12. Tandy

    Tandy New commenter

    I understand where you are coming from guys, but can't agree.

    A good teacher can improvise, overcome, adapt and yes they should be able to deal with situations with unknowns. Fine.

    But, this is not the purpose of interviews, and schools do not have the right to waste class time by putting an unprepared teacher in front of them so that they can pile on pressure. This is just tosh.

    Worst of all is that an aspirant teacher has directly asked for information from the school and this has been refused. This smacks of freakish power games to egotism to me.

    When a teacher would ring me and ask for details, this automatically put them ahead of the game because I would know they were truly interested in providing the best experience for the kids and that they cared about the learning.

    I have great concerns about the way many teacher interview days are set up in general... but that's another story
    hplovegame48 likes this.
  13. I think this is the crux of standpoints.
    I would prefer to not disclose the information to any candidates and for the one short lesson see who is the most natural rather than the one who pulled all the stops out for this one lesson (which is why I hate the idea of ofsted judgements being taken seriously)
    There is of course the idea of the internal candidate knowing the kids though which leads to more consideration...
    Its a tough call but I think I would prefer raw ability rather than somebody who may have killed themselves to get it all right on the day and MAY not be able to replicate that for 20 hours a week.
  14. Tandy

    Tandy New commenter

    I don't want anyone to kill themself preparing for an interview or any lesson, but I do want (and expect) anyone who teaches a group of kids to have enough respect for the kids to find out essential information about them so that the experience is not a waste of their time. I also expect headteachers who are inviting professionals to an interview to not be so fricking pompous to deny information requested.

    This does not stop you from seeing who is the natural teacher. What it does do though, is say we put the kidsas top priority. And that is what I am looking for when I appoint teachers

  15. I think you have made a very good point!
    However, What do you think about getting the chn to create their own set of instructions for a disgusting soup (and I will bring along my own for them to gag at and challenge them to create one even more disgusting), lit focus to include adverbs in instruction sentences. Am I way off for a 30-40 min lesson? What else could I do!? Arghhh! x
  16. I agree on some parts and certainly long term but think we will have a difference on the other aspects of the interview which is cool.
    Sorry I have no idea what you have said
  17. EAL is always a tricky one. A couple of years back we had an influx of Polish pupils. Generally their mathematics was extremely good and more than made up for any lack of language knowledge. A couple of them did get help from a volunteer who was a Polish native coming in to help them a few lessons each week.

    I was extremely fortunate in that that volunteer was happy to write out key words in Polish for me which we then gave to the pupils. Very simple but very effective.

    In addition, we have had pupils from Korea. One of them arrived and we were doing the NC Optional tests the next day. His English wasn't great (at least, not speaking) but he got a Level 8 with no help!

    As to whether candidates should be briefed ahead of an interview with information like EAL. If a classroom teacher had an inspection and wasn't aware of the SEN/EAL needs of the pupils then they would be shot down straight away. I can't see how it helps anyone to not let people have this at interview. If a HoD can't tell if someone is up to much by without setting them up to fail then it's a very poor show. I agree with Tandy.
    hplovegame48 likes this.

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