Hui Mao

UVA STARTALK is a wonderful program. This summer Dr. Tseng, Ming Laoshi and Shi Laoshi did an amazing job helping me become a better Chinese teacher. I liked the teaching practicums because I made progress teaching and designing more interesting activities. But there are still things I need to improve, including:

  • Quickly correcting students’ pronunciation mistakes.
  • Using surveys to check comprehension.
  • Using real props (such as baskets and picnic blankets).
  • Using body language to give instruction.
  • First using modeling and then using PPT instruction.
  • Setting, setting, setting.

In this program I learned how to be a “conductor” in the classroom. Sometimes I need to guide students in their solo performances, and sometimes I need to let them participate in a group chorus. I intend to use the knowledge I have learned from UVA STARTALK in my own classroom in the following ways:

  • Do more student-centered activities, let students choose their own output styles.
  • Communication and meaning-based tasks.
  • Use authentic settings and materials.
  • The teacher will determine the learning goal, and make sure this is assessed through comprehension checks.

This training experience will have life-long value, and will also be a wonderful memory. I am looking forward to participating in more STARTALK workshops in the future.