When I took the TESOL course, we talked about having some conversation starters “in your pocket."
While I can improvise with adults, it’s harder to entertain children “on the fly,” especially without visual aids.
I realized lately that some of the challenges that I have with teaching both at church and in the orphanage come with capturing all the kids’ interest at the same time and starting the lesson with everyone together.
The “presentation” part of the lesson is often the most important since everything else builds off of it. If a few kids are late or don’t tune in right away, then the rest of the lesson probably won’t go very well either...
If you only have one attentive student at the beginning of the lesson, and you decide to wait, you may lose your one enthusiastic student. On the other hand, if you use up your introduction material right away, latecomers will be lost.
So I was thinking that I need to have some back-up activities on hand: something that is educational and serves to engage the kids as they gather. A few no-fail games that will always work. Any ideas?