As a relatively new ESl teacher I always feel the pressure with the teenagers to keep them entertained which is rather tiring. Recently I had a class of 15 to 17 year old students from Japan. They were unreponsives to just about every trick I pulled out of the bag! This caused me some grief as I'd not encoutered this before and I started thingking it was ME!
I did a little internet surfing and found the following article that eased my mind.
It's about boredom in the classroom and how the student brings a bored mind to the room. The teacher does not bore them, they are already in that state of mind and closed to any new ideas. It's an interesting article:
I did notice however that group work went much better than the more formal horseshoe arrangement. I think these younger students felt their cultural pressures when invited to speak out alone from the herd whereas in the group work they were more talkative and I could move around and monitor/talk to each group or individual without a stonewall going up!
I always found learning to be more enjoybale if it was fun and I try to incorporate that into my lessons. That doesn't mean I actually perform like a clown, it means that I try to find age relevant activities that are engaging and that reinforce the grammar point/ reading, writing, listening or speaking task.