Sunday, February 18, 2018

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Taking English to the Community.

 

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All students at Mzuzu International Academy are required to complete a period of Community Service as part of their Graduation requirements. Most students meet this requirement during Year 10 by working with students from local schools the focus being on the development of English skills. When your normal class is made up of over 50 and sometimes 60 students the opportunity to work with an individual English tutor is a very valuable one.

In addition to giving students from local public schools the opportunity to develop English skills, this programme allows MIA students to develop their own skills. A recognized strategy for ensuring a student fully grasps a skill or concept is to ask them to teach it to someone else. 

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Currently students from Mzuzu International Academy are helping to develop English Language skills in three areas:

  • The ability to talk with confidence and without notes on a topic of interest.
  • To be able to recite a poem or a piece of prose in English from memory.
  • To be able to read a passage with fluency and accuracy, taking note of punctuation and interpreting the author’s words with feeling and understanding.

These are all important English skills that help students to develop confidence in the use of English; of particular importance for students who are second language speakers. Here in Malawi local languages hold sway over English despite the latter being an official language.

In addition to enjoying their role as teachers students at Mzuzu International Academy have also benefitted enormously. Research and their feedback suggests the benefits include but are not limited to:Teaching others encourages the use of effective learning strategies