Teaching English involves many things. Vocabulary, grammar, listening, context, conversation and many other bits and pieces that make up a language. But it can also be more specific, when required. There’s no point teaching a businessman or woman the ins and outs of zoology when they deal with accountancy on a daily basis. Unless the student has such an interest!
Most students appreciate involving their industry in classes, and there are numerous ways to do this. Just chatting about what they do exactly. Bringing in audio of video that is related. I tried a different approach recently. The idea started out as a simple ‘factory tour’ where they would show me around their plastics factory.
But the idea evolved. Firstly into a factory tour which I would video, so that we could go back into the classroom and discuss their processes, look up and bits of vocab that didn’t come straight to mind, and generally analyse the workings of the factory floor. Later, we decided to produce a promotional video as a learning project.
It’s fun to do, involves everyone, is a great way to bring their industry into the classroom and of course, there’s a final product to show for all the effort. It took a fair few classes to produce. Firstly a discussion where we decided what we wanted to film and talk about. Then script writing, for both spoken and text content. Then two takes to create the video.
The film might not earn anyone any Oscars for acting, nor me any awards for videography. But I’ve looked at YouTube videos where people have done something similar, and this is much better than any I’ve seen. So I’m happy with the end result. I hope the gang at the factory are as well.