In January I started with a small group of 3 students. The numbers have fluctuated from week to week but recently I have been teaching 8-10 students and I have been especially pleased to welcome a number of women and several babies! Of the 10 students who came on the last week (21stMarch) there were 5 men, 5 women and 3 babies.
The students vary in their command of English but the more able ones are able to support the others and it is wonderful to see them all gain in confidence over time. I am sure that some of them will be able to progress to the classes run by the Keele students by next September.
Each week I give the students opportunities to speak and listen (often to an audio tape) as well as engage in reading and writing activities. They especially enjoy role play; for example, practicing buying a rail ticket or asking for fruit and vegetables at a market stall. They are especially happy to ‘buy’ fresh ingredients to take home. As the last week was just before Easter they all had some mini Easter Eggs as a treat! We always try to have a laugh and end with a game – they never seem to tire of playing Bingo!
On one occasion I teamed up with Margaret and we taught our two groups together which was very successful.
In recent weeks Sue, another volunteer, has joined me. This has been very beneficial as many of the students need individual support, especially with reading and writing.
It has been a joy and a privilege to work with these enthusiastic, charming and optimistic young people and I look forward to joining them again after the Easter break.