Spiky profiles

Language learners often have something known as 'spiky profiles', they are not equally good in the four sections of language learning (reading, writing, listening, speaking). For example, if you learned English by watching films in original English with the subtitles in your own language, then your listening skills are probably quite good. Although, that doesn't mean that you can write if you have never practiced that skill. The key to helping students is to identify these areas where they have weaknesses and focus activities on those areas, while building on their strengths. It's not only skills that the student has but also their mindset and motivations. If, for example, a student needs to pass a speaking test and is very shy, and unwilling to talk, then the teacher needs to build their confidence up so the student has a decent chance when they get into the room with the examiner. On the other hand, a very outgoing student who loves to talk but makes lots of errors offers a different set of challenges. Remember back to when you learned a language at school, there were probably parts you enjoyed more than others, and found harder or easier. It's our job as teachers to encourage our students to work on the skills they find hard, and so make progress. It's useful to be a language student yourself, to periodically put yourself in your students' shoes and experience the joys and frustrations of learning a language.


  1. Yes, My listening skills are quite good because I learned English from watching English movies with subtitles. But still my writing, speaking and reading skills are not quite good. That's why now I started learning from https://smiletutor.sg/english-tuition/. Because only listening skills will not work if you want to become good in the English language.


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