I completed my CELTA course before it was normal to carry a laptop around so all of my lesson plans and written assignments were handwritten, I am only telling you this so that you can get an idea of just how long ago it was….
I thoroughly enjoyed the course and loved my fellow trainees as well as 50% of the tutors (there were 2 tutors on the course). Now that I am a CELTA tutor myself, I often think back to my course and reflect on why I didn’t warm to the other tutor – I think it was probably just down to a clash of personalities. The tutor I liked (X) was the one whose feedback was perhaps more critical but it was delivered in the nicest possible way, we were able to laugh at the things that had gone wrong in the classroom. The other tutor (Y) was probably the more positive one in feedback but now that I think about it, I believe I was a bit more resistant to Y’s feedback. The two tutors were completely different types of teacher and I was aiming to be like X but I now realise that I was being unfair to Y, I let our personality clash get in the way of learning from a very experienced trainer (not that she would have known, I never voiced my feelings).
What was the last thing you wrote? A Whatsapp message? Shopping list? Maybe an email? So why are teachers still getting students to write descriptions of picture stories to practise writing skills? Let’s look at some ways of making our writing skills lessons more useful for real life. Continue reading “Developing Writing Skills in the EFL Classroom”
It is very interesting when observing trainee teachers on a CELTA course, how many feel the need to “teach” in the old-fashioned sense of the word. Many trainees believe that if they haven’t stood at the front of the classroom talking at the students for a good chunk of the lesson that they haven’t actually taught anything.
In my opinion, teachers of EFL (though I am sure teachers of other subjects would benefit too) need to stop thinking that they have to teach but rather that they have to help students learn. After all, if you have discovered something for yourself, you are more likely to remember it. Continue reading “Focusing on Language in the Classroom”