Audio-Visual English Lab

  • Education
  • Ecuador
This project is led by Martha Aguirre, a Volunteer from Illinois

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This project is to replace the current English laboratory at school with a sustainable and modern laboratory for teachers and students K-12. The purpose of the new laboratory is to create a space where students can learn English in a more dynamic, authentic, and interactive way. The lab will have access to technology, a K-12 mini-library with reading materials for students, and a TEFL resource library for teachers. The laboratory will also be equipped with pre-designed lessons plans aligned with the national curriculum created by the English teachers at the school so that teachers can utilize the lab to its’ maximum potential.

The school community is the driving force behind this project, which consists of teachers, students, parents, administration, and staff. The initial interest for this project formed by the English teachers, who not only want to actively improve their proficiency level and professional development but also want to have a functional space to implement the new TEFL techniques they have learned. The teachers have already pre-designed detailed lesson plans that align with each unit in the English books with the activities and materials they will use in the audio-visual English Laboratory. They require that all the teachers use the English lab at least two times per unit in order to make sure that it is being utilized to its’ fullest potential. The English department coordinator will be the one in charge of making sure the lab is being utilized at all times. The school is providing the set space for the laboratory. The school community has continued to demonstrate involvement by finding and obtaining the necessary furniture, donating money to purchase cleaning and painting materials, and volunteering time to remodeling the designated classroom. Teachers and staff have also spent time investigating the prices and of the requested materials and technology. They have asked for donations from different distributors, store owners, and organizations.

In order to make sure the project is sustainable, our department has taken two important factors into consideration: Security and Implementation.

We will implement certain security measures to protect the space and technology, such as locks for the doors, stationary ceiling holder for the projector with a cage, a cabinet with lock and key to store speaker/audio materials, and bars on the windows. The administration has agreed to sign a document that states the lab is only for the use of the English department and any other use of the Lab will require written permission from the English area director. The English teachers will be the only ones equipped with keys to the lab. Teachers will develop an English Lab schedule at the beginning each year so that they can take turns equally and also to hold classes responsible if anything is damaged. The community has also agreed to help maintain the space by repairing anything that gets damaged. There are also teachers in the school that have agreed to fix any broken technology.

In terms of implementation, our department wanted to make sure that the English Lab will be utilized to its full extent, especially during classes. The English teachers made guides for each English book. They have made at least two detailed lesson plans for each unit in the book for a total of 12 lesson plans per English book. The lesson plans are pre-planned activities that utilize the English lab with materials and that teachers are expected to implement every year. If there are any modifications to the national curriculum, the English teachers will modify the plans.

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