Teaching my first class

Jonathan Robie
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Re: Teaching my first class

Post by Jonathan Robie » July 8th, 2015, 11:36 am

mhagedon wrote:I really like this call and response method... and it's so simple!
Simple is good ;->
mhagedon wrote:I think I'd want to mix in more conversational stuff in Greek (πῶς ἔχεις; εὖ ἔχω! κτλ.), but what you've detailed here, Jonathan, can get us to the text or any other topic and looks to be a very versatile exercise. Thank you very much!
Sure - no reason not to mix that in. I think the Polis book is good for conversational Greek. Think carefully about how much of your time you want to devote to this, given the limited time you have. And think carefully about why you are doing this - perhaps it will motivate students, or serve as an "in group" identifier to build group identity?

I'm not convinced that this kind of basic greeting and simple conversational Koine is the most efficient way to learn written Greek - the SIOP materials I've been reading cite a study showing that this kind of conversational ESL doesn't help students with learning subject matter in English. The English used in this kind of conversation is just too different from the English used to discuss subject matter. I suspect it's similar for Greek. I don't think we have good data on that, though, and there's are definitely people with a whole lot more experience teaching Greek than I have who disagree.
mhagedon wrote:
Each fact needed to grasp the text needs to be called to their attention and given a little practice. Actually, that's only partly true. In a beginner's class organized around a text, I don't think you have to teach all the grammar right away, and you do want to teach the easiest things first and work up. You can gloss over ἀπεσταλμένος παρὰ θεοῦ by supplying an English translation, then explain the grammar underlying the translation later in the class if you get to it, which you probably won't in a 12 week class. But you should be intentional about what you postpone.
This seems critical. This way I can choose texts that best cover whatever I need to cover, without worrying about more advanced features. Nice!
I agree that this is critical. You can only cover so much in a lesson. I'm guessing that in a 12 week course, with an hour per week, you might want to cover the basic nominal system, and perhaps present and aorist verbs. Keep it basic, and give lots of practice in the things that you do cover.

What does your classroom look like? Is this face-to-face without tech, or do you have a projector and a computer to work with, or ...
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ἐξίσταντο δὲ πάντες καὶ διηποροῦντο, ἄλλος πρὸς ἄλλον λέγοντες, τί θέλει τοῦτο εἶναι;
http://jonathanrobie.biblicalhumanities.org/

mhagedon
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Re: Teaching my first class

Post by mhagedon » July 20th, 2015, 4:47 pm

Stephen Hughes wrote: Are you struggling with the communicative approach yourself? Are you good at it or trying to pick it up yourself? Is it something that you have done long enough that you can reflect on its value within a wider context of the other teaching methodologies that could be employed?
Sorry, very busy last couple weeks!

Good points... I consider myself to be learning communicative approaches, but this would definitely be an experiment and I'd be upfront with the students about that. I wouldn't say I'm struggling exactly.

My reflection on communicative approaches would mainly be self-reflection, since I haven't taught this way yet. That is to say, I've felt positive effects (e.g., being able to read without translating in my head).
Stephen Hughes wrote:Another point is the "correctness" of explanations or answers that you give students. They will pick up fairly clearly and quickly the rules of "Greek". Whether the "correct" answer for Greek is that they can use it in expression, whether they can express an equivalence in English, or they can parse it. It will unwittingly expose the way you have been thinking about Greek - to some degree at least.
All the more reason to do it this way. I'll learn, too!
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Mike Hagedon (Μιχαήλ)

mhagedon
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Re: Teaching my first class

Post by mhagedon » July 20th, 2015, 5:02 pm

Jonathan Robie wrote:
mhagedon wrote:I think I'd want to mix in more conversational stuff in Greek (πῶς ἔχεις; εὖ ἔχω! κτλ.), but what you've detailed here, Jonathan, can get us to the text or any other topic and looks to be a very versatile exercise. Thank you very much!
Sure - no reason not to mix that in. I think the Polis book is good for conversational Greek. Think carefully about how much of your time you want to devote to this, given the limited time you have. And think carefully about why you are doing this - perhaps it will motivate students, or serve as an "in group" identifier to build group identity?
Wow, that's a great point. I'll think on that.
Jonathan Robie wrote:I'm not convinced that this kind of basic greeting and simple conversational Koine is the most efficient way to learn written Greek - the SIOP materials I've been reading cite a study showing that this kind of conversational ESL doesn't help students with learning subject matter in English. The English used in this kind of conversation is just too different from the English used to discuss subject matter. I suspect it's similar for Greek. I don't think we have good data on that, though, and there's are definitely people with a whole lot more experience teaching Greek than I have who disagree.
Ooo... fascinating! Do you have some references on that? I've checked out from my library Making content comprehensible for English learners : the SIOP® model by Echevarría/Vogt/Short, but I haven't taken a look yet.
Jonathan Robie wrote:
mhagedon wrote: This seems critical. This way I can choose texts that best cover whatever I need to cover, without worrying about more advanced features. Nice!
I agree that this is critical. You can only cover so much in a lesson. I'm guessing that in a 12 week course, with an hour per week, you might want to cover the basic nominal system, and perhaps present and aorist verbs. Keep it basic, and give lots of practice in the things that you do cover.
I wonder... do you think it's best to organize the course by grammar topics? I was thinking of organizing by topics. (ἡ ὁδός, for instance, has chapters about the body, animals, greetings, number, emotions, etc. Of course, it's really a curriculum IMO.) The challenging bit there is probably tying it back to the NT.
Jonathan Robie wrote:What does your classroom look like? Is this face-to-face without tech, or do you have a projector and a computer to work with, or ...
I haven't actually been in the particular room (just assigned this week), but I've asked.

Thanks!
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Mike Hagedon (Μιχαήλ)

mhagedon
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Re: Teaching my first class

Post by mhagedon » July 20th, 2015, 8:23 pm

(ἡ ὁδός, for instance, has chapters about the body, animals, greetings, number, emotions, etc. Of course, it's really a curriculum IMO.)
Oops... meant to say "it's not really a curriculum".
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Mike Hagedon (Μιχαήλ)

mhagedon
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Re: Teaching my first class

Post by mhagedon » July 21st, 2015, 11:24 am

mhagedon wrote:
Jonathan Robie wrote:
mhagedon wrote: This seems critical. This way I can choose texts that best cover whatever I need to cover, without worrying about more advanced features. Nice!
I agree that this is critical. You can only cover so much in a lesson. I'm guessing that in a 12 week course, with an hour per week, you might want to cover the basic nominal system, and perhaps present and aorist verbs. Keep it basic, and give lots of practice in the things that you do cover.
I wonder... do you think it's best to organize the course by grammar topics? I was thinking of organizing by topics. (ἡ ὁδός, for instance, has chapters about the body, animals, greetings, number, emotions, etc. Of course, it's really a curriculum IMO.) The challenging bit there is probably tying it back to the NT.
Actually, I've just started reading the SIOP book, and part of SIOP is having content and language objectives for each lesson. I realize SIOP is for a different context, but still... why shouldn't I try something like that, too? E.g., learn about the nominative case (language) and about animals (content), or about imperatives (language) and the Lord's Prayer (content).
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Mike Hagedon (Μιχαήλ)

Stephen Hughes
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Re: Teaching my first class

Post by Stephen Hughes » July 21st, 2015, 3:49 pm

mhagedon wrote:My reflection on communicative approaches would mainly be self-reflection, since I haven't taught this way yet.
That is a good idea.

My reflection after teaching interactively can be found in this thread.
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Γελᾷ δ' ὁ μωρός, κἄν τι μὴ γέλοιον ᾖ
(Menander, Γνῶμαι μονόστιχοι 108)

mhagedon
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Joined: June 15th, 2011, 11:49 pm

Re: Teaching my first class

Post by mhagedon » July 21st, 2015, 8:54 pm

mhagedon wrote:
Jonathan Robie wrote:What does your classroom look like? Is this face-to-face without tech, or do you have a projector and a computer to work with, or ...
I haven't actually been in the particular room (just assigned this week), but I've asked.
In the room I'll have a laptop, projector, DVD player, and (low-tech) whiteboard.
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Mike Hagedon (Μιχαήλ)

Michael W Abernathy
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Re: Teaching my first class

Post by Michael W Abernathy » July 22nd, 2015, 1:06 pm

Since you'll have a projector you can use with your laptop, I thought you might be able to make use of some pictures I have collected for the purpose of learning Hebrew. Many of the pictures are labeled in Hebrew but you'll find sorted according to subject, religion, agriculture, geography, military, etc. Some of the pictures may be copyrighted but I believe you can use them for teaching purposes. You'll also find that some of them are for modern Hebrew and may not help in teaching Biblical Greek.
Anyway I'd be glad to send these to you if you're interested.
Michael Abernathy
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Shirley Rollinson
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Re: Teaching my first class

Post by Shirley Rollinson » July 22nd, 2015, 3:49 pm

A few more thoughts -
You might spend some time either before the first class or at the start of the first lass, finding out what the students want to do/learn. Why have they come to the class?
"Once a week" means that they will have forgotten most of what they did last week - especially as there will probably be no homework, or they won't do it if you set some.
When learning a foreign language, particularly at the beginning, an hour at a time is probably the limit - after that the brain turns to spaghetti.
Look upon this as the first of what could turn out to be a series of Greek classes - give them enough of a taste to make them want more. Don't try to cover everything, but, for example, teach the present tense Active Indicative. and tell them a bit about the future and past tenses, and the passive/middle, and the subjunctive and optative - but say that those are best left for a later course.
Gear it to what they want to learn, and if you don't know the answer to some to their questions - as nearly always happens with a group of beginners (What's the word for . . . blue, rain, girl-friend, thank-you, a glass of beer) say so and try to find out for next week.
Meet then where their interests are, and deal with the things that interest them, and they'll come back for more.
Don't get caught up with technology - it always breaks down at the worst point, and staring at a screen is guaranteed to put people to sleep/
HAVE FUN

Shirley Rollinson
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mhagedon
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Joined: June 15th, 2011, 11:49 pm

Re: Teaching my first class

Post by mhagedon » July 25th, 2015, 4:56 pm

Michael W Abernathy wrote:Since you'll have a projector you can use with your laptop, I thought you might be able to make use of some pictures I have collected for the purpose of learning Hebrew. Many of the pictures are labeled in Hebrew but you'll find sorted according to subject, religion, agriculture, geography, military, etc. Some of the pictures may be copyrighted but I believe you can use them for teaching purposes. You'll also find that some of them are for modern Hebrew and may not help in teaching Biblical Greek.
Anyway I'd be glad to send these to you if you're interested.
Michael Abernathy
Hi Michael, I am interested, thanks!
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Mike Hagedon (Μιχαήλ)

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