Assignment 4: Lessons from the Classroom
To encourage you to reflect both on yourself as a teacher and on the methods and techniques you have been using in your teaching, and to develop a realistic action plan for your further development after the course.
Five weeks is a very short time to learn something, but I have really learnt a lot on this course. At the beginning of this course, I thought it was tough and stressful, because I was learning new teaching techniques. Previously I had completed my TEFl and thought that CELTA would be similar, but just as effortless, that was completely wrong. My experience with the EFL industry is teaching private students one to one in my home, so this was a massive learning curve.
During this course, I have learned a lot from critiques and feedback of my classmates and tutors, the observation of peers and experienced teachers, and self-reflection. When I had taught one to one before, I seldom thought about self-reflection or gave any feedback as there was no necessity for it. I thought this part was a good learning point to help myself and other trainees on their training path. After all your own self criticism is often the toughest.
To become an effective English language teacher you need to have enthusiasm and inspire enthusiasm. Also you need to be confident and help to build confidence in your learner, be friendly, have a sense of humour, be patient and know the needs of your student/s.
Looking back on some of my ‘work on points’ that I have had in my feedback from my tutors, I feel that I have become a more effective teacher in this way. The main point is that I am now better at organising my lessons. This I found a problem. At first I naively thought I would not need to plan anything. Once again, that was completely wrong. Standing in front of a classroom of expectant students, planning a lesson is a necessary skill I’ve learnt. As Scrivener has said in Learning Teaching a teacher needs to be aware of what the students are thinking and feeling within her class, therefore, “She actively responds to this in her planning and methods and in building effective working relationships and a good classroom atmosphere”.(Scrivener 18/418). Thorough planning is one of the foundations of a successful lesson, and helps to keep me ‘on track’ with the lesson aims. I am also more confident, have the knowledge to maintain good classroom management, but above all I now know that I can give the student/s an English lesson that will be fun and that they enjoy.
Part Two: Strengths and Weaknesses
Good rapport with the students was definitely one of my strengths. My tutor said that I was friendly and used the students names on every occasion. Plus I always encouraged all students, but not in a condescending way. Since my tutor’s comment about good rapport, I think that this has only improved all the more.
Monitoring is another strength that I discovered I have. My tutor said that I...