Teaching English Language Learners: Observation

Observation and Description

Overall Teaching Situation

In this classroom, the teacher stands in front of the students, and they face each other. The class seems to be composed of 10 or fewer students who are a good number of maximum efficiency (Hill, 2006). Some students are seated in pairs, whereas some are seated alone. The class seems to be the English language, and the students seem to be those that are normally described as limited English proficient or learning English as a second language. The class has various teaching aids, most notably a calendar, but there are other unidentified objects and charts within the classroom (Cary, 2007).

Observed Instructional Delivery Methods

The method of learning that is being utilized by the teachers, in this case, is instructor-led training. The teacher is in charge of disseminating knowledge to the students through various methods such as the establishment of rules and regulations to maintain a learning atmosphere in the classroom and the use of facts, examples, definitions, and clarifications, which the teacher claims to do a lot of in the course of teaching English to children as a second or third language (Cary, 2007).

Observed Students’ Interaction with Instruction

In the course of the lesson, the students are sitting down behind their desks and listening attentively to the teacher. They are orderly and do not cause disturbances in the classroom or even talk to one another unnecessarily. The students listen to the teacher, and while some of them understand what is going on in the course of the lesson, others do not. This is evident when the teacher asks them questions, and some of them can answer, whereas others are unable to understand.

The students seem to be already familiar with this teaching method and know what to expect from the teacher besides what is expected of them while in the classroom (Hill, 2006). The interaction between the students and the teacher, feedback from the students, and their use of senses is promoted by the use of discussions, demonstrations, and classroom activities. The teacher introduces little bits of information at a time and keeps repeating it until the students understand.

She is patient enough to use the children’s first languages for communication (Cary, 2007). The students can understand the teacher’s instructions and respond appropriately in the classroom. The teacher knows her students so well she can identify what each student can understand in English and what they cannot understand in English and has learned to communicate with her students despite its difficulty (Hill, 2006).

Analysis, Exploration, and Reasoning

Pedagogical Strategies Observed Which Can Mitigate Challenges Encountered In a Classroom with English Learner Students

There are many challenges that may be associated with English learner students. However, these problems may be avoided through the teacher’s initiative to create an environment that is friendly for students who have trouble communicating in English. The use of simple and clear English in sentences enhances the understanding of the language by these learners (Hill, 2006).

Another approach which the teacher in the video has already employed is appreciating the students’ keenness to participate in the learning experience, which is attested by them raising their hands to answer the questions; this eliminates challenges by building their confidence and English-speaking skills. Where students are unable to understand the questions that the teacher is asking, she elaborates by rephrasing the questions to what the learner can understand better. Where the student does not have a very good grasp of the language, she asks other students to explain classroom matters in the language that she can understand (Cary, 2007).

Student Engagement with the Lesson

The students in this class are highly engaged with the lesson. This is seen in their attentive listening to the teacher and the fact that they understand what the teacher is saying. Also, they demonstrate their engagement through participation in class by responding to the teacher. This is manifested by the fact that they can answer questions and even indicate that they do not know the answers to the questions. This conclusion is also based on the fact that the students respond to instructions, such as when the teacher asks one student to translate her instructions to another student who is not so adept at the English language.

Level of Observed Student Engagement with the Lesson

In this class situation, the teacher can elicit a high level of engagement from the students, primarily by asking questions. Students demonstrated their engagement by volunteering to answer, which is a good sign of engagement (Hill, 2006). They also showed their engagement by answering questions verbally and using the calendar as a teaching aid, which enabled the students to exploit various skills. Also, this enables the teacher to motivate the student and sustain that motivation. In this classroom, the students also can learn from each other and through activities, which makes their process of learning English easier and faster for them (Cary, 2007).


Cary, S. (2007). Working with English Language Learners, Second Edition: Answers to Teachers’ Top Ten Questions. Portsmouth: Heinemann.

Hill, J. (2006). Classroom Instruction That Works with English Language Learners. London: Association for Supervision & Curriculum Development.