The OLS classroom is always buzzing with conversation and activity. Between writing essays, reading out loud, discussing culture and playing fun games, students are constantly working to improve their English skills with feedback and accountability readily available from our passionate teachers. One of the most unique things we do in the OLS classroom is the “Activity Project,” when students have the opportunity to display their knowledge of each week’s subject material while practicing their speaking and presentation skills.
Every Friday students are assigned an activity project to work on over the weekend and present the following Monday. The assignments vary based on the weekly unit. For example, during the Level 3 unit on “Consumer Smarts,” students are asked to create an advertisement and share it with the class. During a Level 8 unit on “Health Care,” students must present on a health-related topic. Students are graded based on their professionalism, speaking skills, completion of the assignment, and visual materials. This is calculated into their overall portfolio score, which is 30% of their final grade. The portfolio also includes students’ writing assignments and listening quiz scores.
Weekly presentations are important because they allow students to apply their skills to practical, real-life situations. Writing assignments, listening quizzes, and reading comprehension tests all assess only 3 of the 4 crucial English skills that students are developing. Activity projects are a way we assess how students are improving their speaking skills. Our small ratio classes already give students many opportunities to practice speaking. However, presentations build their skills and confidence in a more formal manner. This prepares students for future jobs or university settings in which they will need to speak English confidently and professionally.
Students are given the weekend so that they have enough time to brainstorm, use resources like their computer and printer, and practice giving their speech so that they can be prepared. Then on Monday they present and are given immediate feedback from teachers on their performance. Students love this assignment because it allows them to use creativity and share their unique personalities and interests. Activity projects help teachers determine each individual student's’ needs so that they can help them improve in the best ways possible.
Come by Optimus Language School on a Monday morning and you can see students present their activity projects firsthand! It is one of our favorite days of the week.
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