Sunday, June 16, 2013
English Role Play - Voluntourist Post
We went with Ben to his advanced adult class to help out and learn the ropes as we will be leading his sessions next week while he is away. This class is not held at the usual school but further up the winding hill into the favela. They use a classroom here which belongs to another NGO company that teaches residents about computer programs and has loads of old computers, monitors and keyboards and runs classes in how they are put together. The session today started with a writing exercise to demonstrate when to use the verb ‘do’ or when to use ‘make’ as in Portuguese the same word is used for both. Ben is very eager for the group to have a good mix of writing, reading, speaking and listening but is most keen to be able to relate these things to real life experiences so that they can have proper conversations consequently, the rest of the session was based in drama and role plays which suited us fine. There was a scenario with 3 parts – a celebrity couple (the husband was a footballer and his wife a pop star) and a journalist trying to find out more about the husbands alleged affair.
The class was split into groups and we were able to join in taking the role of the journalist which was fun because it meant that we could ask questions and tailor them to the level of each student. It also meant that we could get into role and encourage the drama to follow. Setting the English lesson up as a fake, gossip television show was really fun and the students came up with wildly funny and clever answers punctuated with the ‘girl was photo shopped’ throughout. Everyone got into their roles which seemed to help the conversation flow as they were putting themselves into a different situation, for example two of the participants pretending to be husband and wife even started to have little arguments with each other, this helped to bring the words and grammar to life and give them a meaning off the page. It was great class all round and I look forward to coming back again and exploring other role play scenarios.