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When teaching different groups, we need to consider these special groups: beginners, individuals, young learners, Business English and multilingual/monolingual. Sometimes the teacher will find students that fit into two or more groups.
Beginners students could be any age, they are classified into these categories:
-Absolute beginners: students that have no English at all.
-False beginners: They may have studied or have been exposed to English.
-Adult: they will be highly motivated because they often make the decision to learn English.
-Young: They often need motivation to study specially because they haven't usually made their own decision to learn the language but they can learn more easily than adults.
-The beginner without Roman alphabet: teacher has to include the Alphabet in the lessons and do a lot of reading and writing.
For these specific group, the teacher has to keep it simple, the students are starting from zero, too much information can lead them into frustration; be more visual rather than verbal, this will help them build some vocabulary and be more confident about the language progressively; use questioning and verbal repetition drills; use pairwork, so they can interact with each other and practice more the language; be supportive and praise as often as possible; be patient; play lots of interactive games, this not only get the students to speak more but the class gets more interesting and fun as well; don't overcorrect the students, they are learning the basics of the language, so don't overestimate them.
Individuals are students that teachers can only work with one level, therefore it's not very dynamic. The teacher has to analyze the student, which level of knowledge the student has, to concentrate on their interests, cover all skills and vary your activities and approach, when teaching individuals they finish activities faster than a class, for example.
Young learners are curious and the class can be very dynamic. The teacher has to constantly praise to develop self-esteem; constantly repetition; slow and simple speech; reference individuals; prepare lots of activities to stimulate their creativity; always use English; use gestures and mime; play game as often as possible; change the dynamic and activities as often as possible to keep the class fun since the kids can get easily bored.
Business English: some teachers are afraid of teaching this specific group but it's just a misconception that to teach Business English the teacher has to know about business. The students are there to learn English and 90% of the language is general English, so don't be afraid of teaching this special group. The problems that the teacher may face are tiredness of the students, remember they are there for job purposes, therefore attendance can be erratic, mixed ability classes and motivation will vary.
Monolingual and multilingual classes
Advantages of monolingual classes: they have common difficulties, culture is similar, they can help each other in their native language. Disadvantages: less natural exposure to English.
Advantages of multilingual classes: they have no common language, they have the need to speak the target language, they have different experiences and more exposure to L2. Disadvantages: no common difficulties, different ethnic backgrounds.