One useful way of guiding CLIL learners to process input is to provide scaffolding tools, which learners use to process the material they are working on. These tools provide direction and purpose and focus learners on the material to be learned. Graphic organisers, also known as cognitive organisers, are examples of scaffolding tools.
They are visual representations and organisational tools and they help learners to organise or re-organise input by noting down information. They help learners to understand and process information in texts as well as to become aware of text organisation. Depending on their purpose, graphic organisers can be used before, during or after listening, reading, viewing, writing or discussing. There are many kinds of organisers, for example for generating ideas, for working with cause and effect, and for comparison and contrast.
Another useful way of providing scaffolding is through effective questions. Much classroom time is spent on formulating and answering questions. Teachers question, for instance, in order to interest, engage and challenge learners, to check for understanding and prior knowledge, to remind them of previous learning, to focus and to analyse. Good questioning challenges the learners’ thinking, improves their learning, and encourages them to formulate longer responses in English. It also helps the teacher to assess how much the learners understand.
In this clip, the teacher questions the learner to help her to focus and analyse. This clip was filmed at Calvijn Groene Hart in Barendrecht. The learners are first year Mavo/Havo/VWO pupils (average age 12-13), the subject is Mathematics and the teacher is Bas Hellendoorn.