This course offers the chance to listen to and watch popular American radio programs and videos addressing contemporary social topics such as education, identity, culture, and gender. Students will listen to ions from shows such as This American Life, Radiolab, and TED Talks and then discuss the episode and the topics involved. The listening assignments were produced for native speakers, so an advanced level of English is suggested. Each show includes a tran, so students may read parts of the radio show that they did not understand. Typical listening assignments will be about 15 minutes. We may do a few listening exercises in class, but most class time will be dedicated to discussing the topic of that week. This is a great class for those who wish to improve their conversational and listening abilities, as well as those who wish to deepen their understanding of American culture and share their own perspectives.
In the next five weeks, we will be exploring issues such as gender, national character, and super heroes using listening from the show This American Life. We will also, excitingly, have student-created listening assignments and student-led discussions, with a different volunteer assigning a listening or video homework and asking a few discussion questions each class.
Every student comes to my class with some knowledge of English. As an English teacher, I try to develop and enhance student's preexisting knowledge by tailoring lessons to individual needs. Taiwanese students typically have a good foundation in English grammar and vocabulary but lack the ability to put their English skills practice. With this in mind, I focus on encouraging students to speak up and learn to express themselves in English.
Besides simply focusing on the mechanics of English, I emphasize the importance of understanding cultural and social issues in order to gain a more complete understanding of the English language. Additionally, I strive to help students move from textbook English to being able to speak like a native speaker.
Most importantly, I strongly believe that an effective teacher must be entertaining in order to captivate his audience's attention. Therefore, I endeavor to make my students have fun and relax in my classes. I enjoy using humor as way to develop a comfortable and enjoyable learning environment.