Best Practice Persian

Dwight Stephens

Kolahe Sorx (video okay)Here the instructor shows a photograph of the family of one of the students and asks what the baby is wearing and what color it is.  The students help each other remember the several words for 'red'.  The content is real, since the students have met this family and the baby at a group party.

Packing for a Trip (Video okay)Students pair up in teams of two to make a written list of what they would pack to go on a trip to Esfahan.  There is a good deal of discussion among the students, and a minimum of intervention from the instructor, as they negotiate the task.

Reporting on Packing (Video okay At the end of the previous video, teams report orally on what they have chosen to pack for the trip, and corrections are made to the written lists.

Family Picture A student has brought pictures of his family on his laptop and describes family members to the rest of the class, who sometimes ask questions about them.   There is movement around the room, since the rigid classroom has been relaxed to allow it, and students and instructor crowd around to see the pictures.  The applause at the end was spontaneous.  Here again, the material has emotional import for all.

Semantic Mapping Here the instructor has written the Persian word for 'family' on the whiteboard and has invited the students to write words which for them are associated with this lead word.  The result will be a semantic map, or cluster of semantic maps.  On the theory of semantic maps in learning, see.... The exercise promotes vocabulary recall, spelling and writing practice, social cooperative group work, individual satisfaction, and consolidation of individual conceptual networks.   Note again the marginality and relative absence of direction on the part of the instructor.