I’ve updated my eikaiwa cards with new questions and better conversation flow after using the previous cards in classes over the past few weeks. While students do worksheets and test prep in the regular class I run a mini-eikaiwa at the back of the room so that I get a chance to speak with every student in the class. It is genuinely fulfilling work and the benefits to the students are unquestionable. I’ve made it clear to my students that it is not a test and and that saying, “I don’t know” is perfectly fine. After years of teaching in Japan this is one of the greatest projects I have done for myself and my students and I couldn’t recommend it more. I think it is the work that we ALTs ought to be doing.
At the end of the year it is the perfect time for you to start a project like this as well. Prep-time is almost zero. All you have to do is print out the cards and find one JTE who is willing and interested. Feel free to download my new eikaiwa cards. I uploaded them in word format so you can customize them for your students. I glued the front and back of each card to a bit of construction paper to make the cards sturdier. How you make them is up to you though.
First 9 Cards (Word Download)
Second 9 Cards (Word Download)
Card Backs (logo) (Word Download)
If you like this idea and want to see more like it, please share it with your friends on facebook.