Friday, 9 April 2010

Starting Over

At the beginning of a new school year, I'd like to sum up some of my expectations for the road we have ahead. First, I want to stay more active on line than last year. Little by little I've come to realise the potential that blogging, posting, commenting... has for any teacher trainee - or for anyone seeking to improve on their own walk of life, for that matter. So if my posting was rather sparing last year, I hope you can hear more from me soon. And of course, I'd like to hear from you all too!Second, as I'll be working with a new group of classmates, I'm especially looking forward to hearing different voices and hope to learn from them - and 'steal' some of their ideas too ;-). Third, I want this to be (another) enjoyable learning experience. It's been 4 years now since I started college, and one of my main goals has always been to enjoy what I'm learning. Of course, it'll be hard work - which I believe learning should always be - but I think it'll be worth exploring topics in a new way and making new discoveries.
In this blog I will be focusing on ELT methodology for teenagers and adults courses, age groups which I have taught before and am also teaching this year. Of both groups, I have more experience with adults. In general, adults groups give me the chance to get to know people from different walks of life and with different goals in life. They are generally dedicated and purposeful about studying English and are quite receptive of what the teacher proposes. As for teenagers, this year I'm teaching a full-teens course for the second time, so I'd like to profit from the experience as much as I can. In my case, it seems to take me a longer time to build some trust with teens. On the other hand, once I've managed to interest them in something, I've seen they can be very enthusiastic and deliver great work. One of my (great) goals would be to learn how to build that trust, or rapport, or feedback, early on and being able to maintain it - something which I myself have admired of my best teachers!

8 comments:

  1. Welcome back, Rodrigo! Let me put it in black and white (or should I say in "0s and 1s", since this is electronic text?;-)!): I have contradictory feelings about having the chance to share this course with you this second time: on the one hand, I was convinced you should be over this stage by now; on the other, couldn't be happier to have the chance to keep on learning from you while supporting your own development!
    Having made that clear, let me ask you a few questions: your post suggests adults trust you because they trust "the teacher figure", while teens force you to "validate" your authority personally before opening up... Have you already seen the special dossier on this issue published by our "Minist. de Educación" in March 2009? Any useful tips in it?
    Keep in touch!
    Gladys

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  2. Nice Post~!!!. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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  3. Yes, at last! I finally found your blog (just don't ask how I did it, because I haven't got the faintest idea.)OK, here we go.
    I feel the same way as you do, Rodrigo. But I think there is no recipe to follow, is there? I mean, there are no two identical groups of students (thank God!), so what applies to one may not apply to the other. Maybe one year you have a great group from whom you can get immediate rapport, and a truly tough group the very next year. So, I think it is just live and learn (or live and learn through experience, I mean). I am glad I can share this course with you and the girls. I hope we can make a great team this year (I'm still a bit slow at technology, though)
    Huge hugh,
    Norma

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