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How to inspire students who feel they’re not making progress in learning English

Teaching English to students who are not making progress can be a challenge. Whether they are struggling with grammar rules, vocabulary or pronunciation, it can be demotivating for them and frustrating for the teacher.

However, there are some effective ways to inspire students and keep them motivated in their learning journey. In this blog post, we will explore some useful tips that can help you to keep your students engaged, interested, and focused on improving their English skills.

With these techniques, you can create a more supportive and positive learning environment for your students, helping them to overcome the difficulties and achieve their language learning goals.

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Set realistic goals that are achievable

One of the main reasons students may lose interest in learning English is because they feel like they’re not making any progress. As an English teacher, it’s important to set realistic goals that are achievable. Goals should be challenging but also realistic and attainable.

It’s crucial to tailor your lessons to your students’ abilities and not overwhelm them with content they can’t understand or complete. For example, if you notice that your students are struggling with their grammar, make a plan to address that first, instead of trying to teach them new vocabulary at the same time. This will help them feel less frustrated and more motivated to continue learning.

In addition, breaking up your lesson plans into smaller, achievable goals will help students see progress more easily. This might mean teaching just a few new vocabulary words each week, rather than overwhelming them with dozens all at once. This way, students will see that they’re learning and making progress in their English language skills, which can be very motivating.

Lastly, make sure to celebrate the completion of each goal, no matter how small. Recognizing your students’ accomplishments will help them feel more positive about their progress and encourage them to continue working hard.

By setting realistic and achievable goals, your students will feel more motivated and excited about learning English, which will help them make steady progress over time.

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Celebrate successes, no matter how small

Learning English can be tough, but progress can come in small increments. As a teacher, it’s important to celebrate even the smallest successes in your students’ language learning journey. Whether they’ve mastered a new vocabulary word, improved their pronunciation, or successfully completed a grammar exercise, recognizing their achievements can be a powerful motivator.

It’s essential to remember that progress looks different for every student, so make sure to take the time to appreciate each student’s individual growth. Recognize and celebrate progress in the classroom or virtually by congratulating them publicly or awarding them a certificate.

Another way to celebrate success is by setting up a leaderboard or chart where students can track their progress and compete with their peers. Celebrating success builds confidence in students and encourages them to strive for more.

In summary, celebrating even small successes can go a long way in motivating students to continue their language learning journey. By recognizing and highlighting the progress they make, you can inspire them to continue working hard and striving towards their goals.

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Encourage outside-of-class practice anywhere, anytime.

Learning English should not just be confined to the four walls of a classroom. To help your students make progress and develop their language skills, encourage them to practice outside of class too. Suggest they read English books, watch English movies or TV shows, listen to English songs or podcasts, or even play games in English.

You can also suggest that your students try to communicate with English speakers, whether that be through social media, online forums, or language exchange programs. This will give them real-world practice in using English and help them gain confidence in their language skills.

By encouraging your students to practice English outside of class, you can help them improve their skills faster and develop a lifelong passion for the language.


Get creative with assignments

Assignments don’t have to be boring worksheets or endless lists of vocabulary words. Get creative and find ways to make the material engaging and interactive. For example, if you’re teaching verb tenses, have students act out scenarios using the correct tense. If you’re working on reading comprehension, have students create their own graphic novel adaptation of a short story.

You can also use technology to your advantage. There are countless apps and websites that allow students to practice English in a fun and interactive way. Duolingo and Quizlet are two examples of online resources that offer a variety of exercises and activities to improve language skills.

By getting creative with assignments, you’ll not only keep your students engaged and interested, but you’ll also give them the opportunity to use English in a practical and meaningful way. Remember, the more enjoyable and relevant the assignments are, the more motivated students will be to learn.


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Connect material to students’ interests

One of the best ways to keep students interested in learning English is to make sure that the material you’re teaching is relevant to their interests and passions. Whether it’s music, movies, sports, or art, find ways to incorporate these topics into your lessons.

For example, if you have a student who loves music, you can use song lyrics as a way to teach grammar and vocabulary. Alternatively, you could have students watch short movie clips and discuss the dialogue and storyline in class.

When you’re able to connect the material to something that the students are genuinely interested in, they’re more likely to be engaged and invested in their learning. It also helps to show that you’re interested in them as individuals, which can create a sense of rapport and trust between teacher and student.

Incorporating student interests can also be a great way to generate classroom discussion and debate. This not only keeps the students interested, but it also gives them valuable opportunities to practice their speaking and listening skills in a more organic, natural way.

So the next time you’re struggling to keep your students motivated, think about how you can tap into their interests and passions to create a more engaging learning experience. Not only will it help keep your students on track, but it will also help create a more positive, fun classroom environment for everyone involved.


Encourage peer-to-peer learning & In class conversations

One of the most effective ways to keep students engaged and motivated in learning English is by encouraging peer-to-peer learning and in-class conversations. This strategy not only improves students’ communication skills but also enhances their confidence in speaking English.

Here are some tips on how to make this happen in your classroom:

  1. Pair up students: Pairing students of different language levels or backgrounds can provide a good opportunity for language exchange. Pairing students who have stronger English skills with those who need more support can foster a learning community where everyone can help one another. This can be particularly useful during in-class discussions or activities that require group work.
  2. Use icebreakers: Start each class with a warm-up activity or an icebreaker. This can help break the ice and encourage students to feel comfortable in the classroom. By getting students talking to one another in English, it creates a relaxed and engaging environment where they can feel comfortable expressing themselves.
  3. Encourage active listening: When students are working in pairs or groups, encourage active listening skills. Encourage students to ask follow-up questions and repeat back what their partner has said to confirm their understanding. This not only helps with comprehension but also improves communication skills and builds confidence in speaking English.
  4. Provide feedback: As the teacher, make sure to provide constructive feedback during in-class conversations or group work. This helps students identify areas for improvement and also reinforces good communication skills and speaking habits

By incorporating peer-to-peer learning and in-class conversations into your English lessons, you are providing students with a unique opportunity to learn and practice English in a relaxed and engaging environment.

Not only will this approach keep students motivated and interested, but it can also accelerate the pace of their progress.

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Encourage the use of tools like Learn Laugh Speak

As a teacher, it can be tough to find ways to keep students interested in learning English when they feel like they’re not making progress. One solution to this problem is to encourage the use of language learning tools like Learn Laugh Speak. This app is perfect for students who struggle to make progress in traditional classrooms due to their busy schedules or different learning styles.

Learn Laugh Speak offers a variety of features that can help students stay engaged and motivated. For example, it has 33,000 lessons designed specifically for English learners, covering everything from grammar and vocabulary to pronunciation and conversation skills. Additionally, the app offers 12 levels of placement tests, which are aligned with the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) guidelines.

What makes Learn Laugh Speak unique is that it is the only app in the world that is fully aligned with all aspects of the CEFR guidelines. This means that students can be confident that they are learning English in a way that is effective and relevant to their language proficiency level.

By encouraging your students to use Learn Laugh Speak, you are giving them a tool that can help them overcome the challenges they may face in a traditional classroom setting. This app allows them to learn at their own pace and on their own schedule, which can be a game-changer for students who are juggling work, family, and other commitments.

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