CNA instructor

  1. 3
    I am teaching a new CNA class. This program is new at the school where it is taking place. The issue that I'm having is that the class contains a fair amount of students that do not speak English very well ( that's me being nice ) the students need an explanation for every other word which I don't mind doing BUT it takes away from teaching what I need to teach to the students to become a nursing assistant. The location where the school is located primarily has a certain ethnicity, which I prefer not to say. I am thinking of telling the director of the school to have the students take an ESL course before taking any other courses. I personally feel as If the students are not understanding anything. Any advice besides the what I have in mind to do would be greatly appreciated.

    Thx
    poppycat, kalevra, and Fiona59 like this.
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  4. 27 Comments so far...

  5. 0
    Maybe if you have access to a computer in the classroom or time before class come up with a translator website or a list of the terms you will be using during class with the translated definitions. It's the only thing I could think of to do. Good luck!
  6. 1
    If there is an ethnicity that is moreso in your area, with all due respect, not sure why they would hire a teacher that doesn't speak that language. But if the class is mixed with English speakers, then either the school needs to have a seperate class that is strictly taught by a person speaking that language. And a good thought would be to make it a pre-equisite to have a good command of English prior to taking the class. All good things for the next class. Meanwhile, I would hand out papers in the language, tests, handouts (Google translate is awesome!) Do your teaching in English, with a "rule" that if in fact a person doesn't understand a word due to a language barrier, that THEY need to look it up--and they can talk with administration about tutors/translators on their own time.

    With that being said, if in fact the entire class is ESL and more SL than E, there needs to be a translator present, and translates what you say into their language.

    There are also computer programs that use the sound of your voice and translates into their language on the computer--using headphones.Many courts use them, and their could be grant money to pay for that technology. But that would be up to administration--and if they are seeing that people are unable to pass the class and get certified, then perhaps they will see it as an issue to be dealt with...
    RN/MSN1984 likes this.
  7. 4
    How will they pass the written portion of the exam to become state tested?
    poppycat, Kooky Korky, amoLucia, and 1 other like this.
  8. 0
    I can completely appreciate your frustration! It can be very hard to ensure that students are actually understanding the material. I've made extra test preparation materials available so that students can work on the material. Some people are stronger at reading English than speaking it. I also see some of the students put forth the effort to understand the materials more than others. I do think your idea of an ESL class prior to the CNA course is an excellent idea.

    When we got to the clinical portion, I realized that several of my students with a language barrier were visual learners. They quickly caught on to the skills once they could see them demonstrated on actual residents rather than just reading the steps.

    What I wanted to share is a positive experience that I had with a similar situation. If the area you live in has a higher proportion of different ethnicities, then you will likely encounter patients of these ethnicities too. The students who speak the native language of the patients can be a huge asset, and hopefully able to provide translation to other members of the staff who may not speak the same language as the patient.
  9. 3
    I would be a jerk about it. If they would have been better suited being taught in another language then they should have signed up for a class taught in that language.

    The only thing I think I would do is initiate a rule where students may not interrupt lecture to ask questions and to save questions for designated times at designated stopping points in the lecture.

    In a perfect world, a student should be familiar with the vocabulary of the daily lecture because they would have seen the same words in the reading assignments they did before the lecture. Students can read the required reading at their own pace and look up any words they don't know in a glossary or dictionary.
  10. 10
    Why would you need a translator? There will not be one on the job, these people are going to be caring for people. These medical terms are hard for people to understand with English as their first language. They need to understand English before taking on this new role. It's unfair to the patients they will be taking care of. Good for you in suggesting a class.
    poppycat, RN/MSN1984, charlottegirl, and 7 others like this.
  11. 0
    don't know what the "that's me being nice" comment is about, but its obvious you are not the right person for the job. Prometric does have options for taking the CNA in written portion in Spanish. More than likely the school either needs someone who speaks their language or one can try to become more innovative at teaching. I bet $100 than there is a dual speaker in your class, have you even bothered to ask them? Have you consulted your boss for a translator? have you exhausted all resources to be able to teach?

    https://www.prometric.com/en-us/clie...WebVersion.pdf
  12. 1
    Quote from jadelpn
    If there is an ethnicity that is moreso in your area, with all due respect, not sure why they would hire a teacher that doesn't speak that language. But if the class is mixed with English speakers, then either the school needs to have a seperate class that is strictly taught by a person speaking that language. And a good thought would be to make it a pre-equisite to have a good command of English prior to taking the class. All good things for the next class. Meanwhile, I would hand out papers in the language, tests, handouts (Google translate is awesome!) Do your teaching in English, with a "rule" that if in fact a person doesn't understand a word due to a language barrier, that THEY need to look it up--and they can talk with administration about tutors/translators on their own time.

    With that being said, if in fact the entire class is ESL and more SL than E, there needs to be a translator present, and translates what you say into their language.

    There are also computer programs that use the sound of your voice and translates into their language on the computer--using headphones.Many courts use them, and their could be grant money to pay for that technology. But that would be up to administration--and if they are seeing that people are unable to pass the class and get certified, then perhaps they will see it as an issue to be dealt with...
    What will they do with english speaking patients, though? Its all well and good to accommodate them so they can learn, but they need to be able to communicate in English to an English speaking patient population. Especially elderly demented people!
    ktwlpn likes this.
  13. 0
    Maybe you could give them all a list of commonly used words and phrases with the appropriate translation?

    As another poster pointed out there are many translation apps that you can use. Perhaps you could prepare something ahead of time, or as someone pointed out pick a bi-lingual student to help you translate.

    I would be concerned how these students will do when they have an Alzheimers patient who can't understand them and vice versa.


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