It can be quite difficult to remember all the errors you saw during monitoring and so it’s a good idea to use a notepad. However, many students may think that every time you write something down they’ve made a mistake. Read on to find out about a slightly different monitoring idea. Divide your notepad into four squares.
One square for errors and good use of the target language, one for unrelated errors which you may want to correct at a later stage and one for language surprises, i.e. the kind of language you notice students use and make you think “Wow, I didn’t expect to hear that!”
Let students know that you are looking out for good language as well as errors to help them. Now they won’t have to feel as suspicious when you take notes and you will have more language to comment on in the feedback stage.
Most importantly, you’ll be able to praise students for all the positive language surprises and they will get the sense that good performance does not go unnoticed.