Encourage students to become independent learners!

Encourage students to become independent learners!

Teaching tip

Here are six activities which can help students achieve that goal.

Prepare one of the many 6-minute English listening programmes from the BBC. Depending on the level of your learners, you could give a copy of the transcript in the lesson and then ask them to listen to the programme for homework. Build on this by encouraging students to listen to (any) of the 6-minute English listening programmes in the following weeks and then to report back to the rest of the class. This also encourages listening to authentic English.



Ask students to find out the English name of five films that have a different name in German, for example Zwei glorreiche Halunken is The Good, the Bad and the UglyManche mögen's heiß is Some Like it Hot. In the class the students read out the English titles and the others have to guess the German titles. (You could also do this activity with books or plays.) If students have a favourite English-speaking film which they know well, encourage them to watch it in the English original with German or English subtitles.

Trip to England! Choose a selection of tourist locations in England: Stonehenge, Bath, York Minster, Buckingham Palace, Land's End, the Lake District for example. Each student selects a location, researches it at home and in the following lesson they make a short presentation with a few facts about this place and why the class should visit it on a trip to England. (You can do this activity with any location e.g. Canada, Ireland, United States of America.) Students can also make a short presentation about places they have visited on holiday.

Encourage students to email or message each other between lessons, or to meet up together for a coffee in a local café for an English conversation. Some cities and towns have an English-German association which meets up for an informal Stammtisch.

What’s in the news? Most students know what’s going on in the German news - encourage them to find an article in English about a news event they know in German. A news event in the UK (or USA) will also help to develop cultural knowledge.

Always allow space in a lesson for students who have come across new words or phrases. Ask students to actively search out new expressions and to bring them to the class.


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