The Malaga TEFL course. The Close Control, the second phase of the TEFL pyramid.

The Malaga TEFL course. The Close Control, the second phase of the TEFL pyramid.

In previous articles we have established the concept of a TEFL pyramid to describe a logical approach to how to go about teaching any given target language. The presentation process allows students to become acquainted with the new language and be given a structural awareness of its components, the context in which it is usually found and the ability to form the necessary sounds in order to correctly communicate with it in the speaking skill.

The close control stage tries to supply the student with a high frequency use of the target language in as many of its forms as possible in a closely monitored task which requires a limited use of new lexis and a relatively narrow context. Its name, ‘close control’, refers to the closely controlled use of the new language. Let’s take the different aspects of this definition by parts:

  1. High frequency. The idea is to get the students using the new structure in as concentrated a form as possible to maximise the practise they get with the new language, and cement its use in place as a functional part of their linguistic ability.
  2. Target language. This means the forms and structures that have been the focus of the presentation process.
  3. As many forms as possible. This means that the close control stage should provide a chance for the student to need to switch accurately between the different forms of the structure (positive, negative, question etc.) as required.
  4. Closely monitored task. The close control stage should allow the teacher to be closely monitoring the situation and correcting as much as possible to raise the student’s awareness to their errors and try to address the most common errors.
  5. Limited use of new lexis. The students are expected to focus on the new language, so it is desirable that their attention is not being diluted by having to use their concentration on controlling and searching for new lexis.
  6. Narrow context. This, again, allows the students to focus on the accurate reproduction of the target language, rather than having to pay attention to manipulating a task that in itself has complex or distracting elements.
These factors when applied to creating a close control activity give the embryonic use of newly language the chance to be ‘installed’ in the mental apparatus of the students and attempt to maximise precision of expression before letting the student go on to a freer use of the target language.

TEFL class / TESOL class considerations:

The TEFL centre attaches great importance to the trainee teacher’s ability to execute a well-designed close control activity, as it will markedly improve the efficiency of the students’ progress. It is also one of the most creatively demanding aspects of the TEFL pyramid and the related classroom management skills.


Posted on July 11th, 2017


Welcome to The TEFL Centre in Málaga!

     We offer:

  • 4 week intensive accredited TEFL courses in Málaga.
  • Savings to be made of approximately 500€ on competitors' course prices.
  • Recognised UK-based certification.
  • Monday to Friday, 9am to 5.30pm.
  • Maximum of 10 trainees per course.
  • Highly experienced trainers.
  • Reductions in price for friends enrolling together
  • Training given in a busy language school.
  • Emphasis on practical course content.
  • Life-long professional support for graduates.
  • Direct contact with the accrediting body.
  • Membership of our teacher graduate pool.
  • Accommodation service available.
  • Help in finding placements, writing CVs and interview technique.
  • Social activities programme.
  • Airport transfer service.
  • Discounts on Spanish courses.



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