It has been a pleasure to listen to students retelling anecdotes that parents or relatives had told them once. It has also been a wonderful opportunity for shy kids to “say something” because they could feel confident, and of course, I prized them immediately with warm, rewarding words. Mates listened to them and these contributions triggered other interesting comments. Sometimes, breaktime was due, and many children wanted to go on participating.
Arranging the tables and chairs in a semicircle was also an asset. This “U format” allowed us to have eye contact, and I could carry my chair around the classroom, so as to be able to work with all the students.
Assemblies brought real benefits to all the children and of course, to me. I noticed that they achieved and acquired fluency in their speaking and it also had a direct impact in their writing too. Sounds could be polished, functions used in the right contexts, types of words correctly collocated, among other linguistic advantages.
Above everything I have mentioned before, what I like most is the way children expressed and shared their own feelings and emotions. Creating a relaxed, warm atmosphere in the classroom, also facilitated to strengthen enormously the emotional bonds among all the people who are involved in this cognitive, mental process called “LEARNING”.