"English In Practice" Pocket Book
ENGLISH speaking competency cannot be developed only from classroom lessons. Ms Indah E. Listyaningsih, a teacher at MTsN Klaten, Central Java developed a structured exercise program, "English in Practice: Pocket Book". The following is her account of the teaching experience
The pocket book made by students
The pocket books contain English idioms and vocabulary relevant to students' daily lives, including phrases that are commonly used in- and outside the Madrasah. Some example of the books' contents are 'Greetings', 'In the Classroom', 'In the Teacher's office', 'In the Mosque', and many more. These books helped improve students' ability in speaking English.
The books are not printed. They were written by students each time they encounter new phrases or vocabulary. When they write a new word, they also have to write a transcript of its spelling. Students must memorize what they have written in the book by using it in their daily lives.
Each month students submit the book for monitoring. I then check their achievement to date. I have also prepared an instrument to assess students' work against the assessment criteria.
This exercise has inspired and motivated students to learn more. They have been expressing their creativity in the pocket book. This exercise also helps in character building of students, such as discipline, independence and personal responsibility in learning. This fostered interest in learning English in the classroom.
And in an effort to make the learning more interesting, I also created a chant that my students and I have to say at the beginning of every lesson. When I say "English ...." students reply with "I like it. I love it." That was a little bit about my experience in facilitating better learning for my students, while at the same time helping in building their character.