Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How long should it take to present and teach the starting point?
A: Ten to 15 minutes should be enough time. Treat it as a warm-up activity to get students to think about the theme of each unit.
Q: Should I expect students to learn all the new language in the starting point?
A: It’s not necessary for students to learn all the passive vocabulary and grammar in the starting point. However, you can encourage them to use the productive vocabulary, which is recycled throughout the unit and listed in the language summaries in the Teacher’s Edition.
Q: Should I teach my students more grammar than that in the grammar box?
A: To avoid overloading students, it’s preferable to teach only the grammar in the grammar box. Then progress to the speaking activities, so that they can apply the rules in communication.
Q: What should I do if my students need more controlled grammar practice?
A: You can assign practice exercises in the Grammar Plus section in the back of the Student’s Book, or the Workbook for homework. The teaching notes in the Teacher’s Edition also suggest appropriate assignments for each lesson.
Q: Should I explain the rules to my students or encourage them to guess the rules?
A: There is a noticing activity below each grammar box, which asks students to look for examples of the grammar in the starting point. For a change, you can refer students to this activity before going over the examples and rules in the grammar box.
Q: How can I help students remember recently taught vocabulary?
A: One way is to spend five minutes of each class reviewing new words. You can also try different vocabulary review techniques from the fresh ideas and photocopiables in the Teacher’s Edition.
Q: What should I do if my students have difficulty understanding the audio program?
A: You can ask students to make predictions before you play the audio program. Then play the audio a few times, asking students to listen for different items each time.
Q: My students get nervous during listening practice. What’s the solution?
A: One way is to assure students that they don’t need to understand every word. Tell them they will hear the audio program several times. You could also have them work together in small groups or pairs.
Q: How can I teach the reading sections most effectively?
A: Encourage students to read silently and quickly. When they are skimming or scanning, discourage them from reading aloud, following each sentence with a pencil, or looking up each new word in the dictionary. They should be trying to understand new words in context instead. Also encourage them to take part in the discussion questions to share ideas about the reading passages.
Q: What can I do to make writing more enjoyable for my students?
A: Students should first learn to generate ideas by freewriting. Tell students at this stage to keep writing, and not to stop to think about mistakes, or to check spelling or grammar. This gets the students to think in English, and it is a good way to relax, express themselves naturally, and to feel confident about their writing.
Q: What is the difference between the speaking and discussion activities?
A: Speaking activities are usually short ten-minute speaking tasks for students to practice using the grammar and vocabulary in the units. Discussions are more extensive oral activities that are designed so students can discuss at length an issue or topic related to the theme of the unit.
Q: The communication reviews are helpful, but I don’t have enough time to use all of them. What can I do?
A: You can use the communication reviews in a variety of ways. For example, you can assign students to complete the self-assessment task for homework, and then choose exercises related to areas they need to improve, such as speaking or listening.
Q: Where can I find additional material for my longer classes?
A: You can supplement the Student’s Book units with photocopiable games, projects, and readings, and fresh ideas in the Teacher’s Edition. Grammar Plus and self-study activities in the back of the Student’s Book are also available.
Q: I don’t have enough time to finish each exercise. How can I finish them more quickly?
A: Remember that you don’t have to complete every exercise in the Student’s Book. You can omit selected exercises, such as writings, readings, and communication reviews.