Sunday 6 September 2009

THE POST BOX

Sometimes a little idea can bring in a lot of changes. Yeah, as they said it "An idea can change your life". And if we, teachers, begin to think different, I think we could say, "An idea can change the classroom". Here is a little idea that changed my class.

The idea was to have a post-box in my class. My students were surprised, but excited by the very idea. We were through our letter-writing session. It has been always the same. The teacher would given them an imaginary context in which the students have to place themselves and write letters to imaginary people. If they were to write real letters they would need real people to receive them. Thus came the idea of a letter-box. A student made a wonderful box and another one happily volunteered to be the post-man.

Students could write letters from home. They could write it to anyone in the class, including the teachers. The only condition was that they should write the letters in English. The letters can be posted in the box any time. But the post-box will be opened only once in a week and during English hour. It takes only 5 minutes to deliver the letters.

Though I had doubts about the success of the idea, I wanted to give it a try. And I'm happy to say that it really worked. Now students eagerly wait for Fridays. And I have seen excitement on their faces when they receive letters. I too write letters to them. Though only very few write long letters, I'm optimistic. I think now I can easily teach them how to write letters. And I believe language learning is faster in natural contexts.

I would love to hear from you all those little big ideas that have changed your classroom.