Tuesday, January 31, 2012

788. Following basic rules may help educating






One day teacher of English A said to teacher of English B, “Yesterday a student looked like annoyed with another teacher’s despotic ways to do things, he said. The kid turned to me to give vents to his anger. I caught myself talking with this kid about the school rules - after having talked about my colleague’s things.




At the end of the conversation I think he understood the necessity of some basic rules to carry out everyday’s working together in a nice way. As well the rules would be necessary to help students to grow up with inner life and to become better people, better persons. The rules, say for example, the schedule, arriving on time, respecting others (first respecting the teachers), neatness in the classroom, small jobs for the kids, are aimed to create a sane atmosphere for growing up as responsible people.




Ultimately the student (and the teacher alike) that struggles to fulfill the rules... feels free!: I wish to live this way just because I wish – I’ve chosen to follow those rules. And I believe that student (or that teacher) will feel better with themselves and with their classmates (or colleague teachers). The atmosphere of the class in this way should be collaborative and helping one another – most often.” / Photo from: palmbeach k12 fl us. dwyane wade dunking. Playing as a team helps reach success.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

787. She's free to decide what to do





One day teacher of English B said to teacher of English A, “Have you ever thought our students make decisions all the time to learn English? Whether I do my homework, or make an assigned composition in this or that way... Actually learning a language is, coming down to the root, a decision and a chain of decisions, thus something personal, something human. You can tell your students about this fact.



Something that has to do with making decisions is contributing to a debate or discussion in class. Thi is a pretty good example. We can be talking about what to do in a paradise-like virgin archipelago amidst the waters of south-east Asia. The students make their decisions about what they could do there or not do, etc. Ask a silent student to say something, like ‘What do you think, X, hmm?’ At that moment you’re having him or her think and decide.



I believe learning English can only be accomplished, or carried out, by means of decisions.” / Photo from: labibliotecadelnautilus wordpress com. girl reading a book 1929

Thursday, January 26, 2012

786. Trying to find the right direction






One day teacher of English A said to teacher of English B, “This is a positive story in the end. A couple summers ago I was assisting in a camp of English, in the south of Spain. On this post I’ve changed some small pieces of info about the real people of the story.




Ok. One day I called the parents of one of my students for whatever reason. The boy had problems relating studying and revising his coursebooks to pass the remedial exams of September. His dad asked me how their son was going along. I told him he needed to study harder and learn how to study the books of his school subjects in English.




I also told him the kid used to forget his books in their common bunkbed room and so didn’t bring them to the classroom.




I had previously decided to change the methodology: ok, firstly it’s more important to help my boys to learn how to study. And some minutes of the class-period will be devoted to speaking in English, by means of games, prompts, etc.




His dad told me the boy wouldn’t bring his books to the classroom because we dedicated all the time to just talk in the class, both in English and in Spanish. ‘What!? All this is crazy!’ I thought after the phone conversation. It was very hot and humid. I got mad [upset]: the kid had told his parents he didn’t need the books in the class because we just spoke, while I was insisting in bringing the books to use them in the class, as revision and study.




In the end, next day I smiled: all right, all will be arranged nice by means of a serene conversation with the kid and his parents: both his parents and I were worried about the boy, and both were pulling toward the same direction - it wouldn’t be any useful to start a quarrell with his parents: we simply had to say things clear, to find what the kid needed then.” / Photo from: bullcreekblog blogspot com. canoeing spring creek canyon

Monday, January 23, 2012

785. Congrats, teachers





Today I would like to say Congrats! to all of you teachers who publish your posts in TeacherLingo. It’s awesome to see how many teachers are so committed with teaching people, young ones mostly. As well I can see, with joy, you’re enthused with teaching; otherwise you wouldn’t publish your posts. I see this enthusiasm also by the things you say. Your labor is so encouraging to me. A big thanks to TeacherLingo team too. Obviously, you team, don’t feel kinda obliged or the like to publish this post. Whatever you decide to do is ok with me. / Photo from: quickrelease tv. kid cycling.

Friday, January 20, 2012

784. It's beautiful to learn






One day teacher of English A said to teacher of English B, “Last Wednesday I carried out the class in a different way as usual. The thing with my three students is that they are in need of learning how to study in their course books; also to practice the grammar and vocab they’re learning. Those grammar and lexis are common everyday language, and so they need them as the basement for near future communication with people in English.





As well they have to pass the subject of English of their schools, as a first premise. Study and practice will make for pass the subject and near future authentic communication.





I had them sit at a long rectangular table in a study hall of our center. While they were working on their books they also asked me questions, such as ‘I don’t understand this exercise’ [in Spanish]. ‘Ok, read it again, and over and over’, I told him. ‘Use the dictionary’ too. In the end, as I gave him some small prompt about the exercise, he did understand it: ‘Oh, I see now!’





Next time, with this learned experience, I’ll have him to do it on his own. It’s something great to know things in the classroom are as these, often.” / Photo from: exmoorencyclopedia org uk

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

783. I changed the title of post # 782

Sorry, I changed the title because it might be ambiguous. The point is that she keeps waiting because she knows he minds her, she's important to him. She has the hope that he won't be late. He's about arriving soon, on the train. Obviously I invented the story.

782. She stays there because she knows he won't be late






One day teacher of English B said to teacher of English A, “You can remember your students’ names, now and at the beginning of the academic year because they are people interesting to you. I mean, it’s more simple to remember someone’s name because you respect and have affection to that person. This is love of benevolence: you wish something good to the other. In other words, you can more easily remember the people that mean something to you. As well, this ability of remembering names is something suitable to teachers, because of practice, year after year, when he or she welcomes and meets their students at the start of the academic year. I’ve seen all this in your daily teaching English.” / Photo from: meniegoasubirmealcarro blogspot com. chica esperando el tren.

Monday, January 16, 2012

781. Focusing the objective






One day teacher of English A said to teacher of English B, “Some of my students think they’re going to get a good grade in the next test of English, but in the end they get a low grade. I want to help them be aware of their actual and realistic knowledge and capability of using English. All this before the test, obviously. What can I do?




I could ask them to think and assign the grade they would honestly deserve so far – in this way, at least I’ll make them think and mentally revise what they’ve learned, both grammar and usage of English for authentic communication.




Just one more thing. I’ll tell them to plan their study and practice from the very first day we begin a new unit in the course book. They might look through the unit and get to know its contents. Thus they would make out some general plan of work on their own. So, I would ask them next day, in the class, their findings concerning the contents, and suggestions of how to work out the unit.” / Photo from: family go com. family barbecue photo

Saturday, January 14, 2012

780. This can help you, teachers



Here you have a comment by Heather that I received on January 1, 2012. / Photo from: mapthegap co uk. ‘voluntourism’ can involve teaching abroad.


Hi! My name is Heather and I work for Worth Ave. Group. We’re currently holding a contest for K-12 teachers to win grants for their schools, and iPads or iPods for their classrooms. If you’re interested in participating, feel free to email me or visit the link I’ve posted below. Have a great day!


http://www.worthavegroup.com/giveaway/

voteforteachers@worthavegroup.com



Friday, January 13, 2012

779. Rising up to the music






One day teacher of English A said to teacher of English B, “The authentic and long-lasting discipline in the class is self-discipline by each student. Adult learners can demand from themselves and struggle to listen attentively and participate in the class, counting on your help, teacher. What about adolescents? From time to time you can tell one student he or she’s improving their attention, because they achieved to carry out a more complex contribution to the class.




The point is each student should become more and more aware of their role and work in the class of English: they’re ascending a slope upward, little by little. Remember that the ‘mass’ of the class-group consists of individual learners. No one in the class is anonymous: every and each student is a singular person. Pass them on all these ideas.” / Photo from: Donald O’Connor, Debbie Reynolds and Gene Kelly in unforgettable musical movie Singing in the Rain (1952). The actual piece they’re playing on the photo is “Good Morning”.




Heather, I hope to tell you something next post.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

778. Learning a language and having fun



One day teacher of English B said to teacher of English A, “Hi again. What do I do to refresh my English? One thing is I try to read an authentic text in English every day, from a novel – a text taken at random, also from other teachers’ posts in the Internet, etc. I focus on new expressions, idioms or ways to say things in English. Second thing: I read that text rather massively, but for a few minutes, focusing on the story, enjoying the story. I can easily see my English keeps alive. Oh, and I use those expressions and idioms when typing on the computer or when speaking with someone. It serves the purpose.” / Photo from: coughlin edublogs org. girls reading books.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

777. Pushing in the same direction



Just to thank you, farry and alex, for your encouragement and advice, respectively. Thank you for your comments. / Photo from: laprofedemusica blogspot com. The movie is Les Choristes; as you may know, Los chicos del coro, in Spanish.



Saturday, January 7, 2012

776. Learning good manners


One day teacher of English B said to teacher of English A, “We teachers at our school are concerned about the way our students have lunch at the cafeteria; they take lunch with bad manners, even somehow rude. It’s not all of them, but rather many of the kids.

We think that something else they should learn in school is to take meals –lunch in this case- in a polite and normal way. Also the students should be helpful to one another and, for example, if the pitcher of water is empty, someone can stand up and go to fill it again.

One teacher told me some days ago that in his school some moms take turns to attend the school to help out to teach primary-education students, and early secondary ones, how to use the cutlery, how to use the napkins, how to eat in a nice way, etc. It works, he told me. These moms planned the calendar so as to decide what days are ok with each mom to go up to the school at that time.” / Photo from: radiobrisas com. niñas yendo a la escuela

Friday, January 6, 2012

775. Updating



One day teacher of English A said to teacher of English B, “Yesterday a friend of mine, another teacher, told me he had studied English in ‘COU’ for the last time. ‘COU’ was the last year in secondary education in Spain some years ago. Now he would like to be able to use English again.



I told him that ifhe re-started again to learn and practice English, he should remember much of what he knew; he should remember the grammar and vocabulary he thinks he has forgotten – actually it isn’t as if he had to start from zero again. The same, I think, would happen to me, if I wanted to speak some German again: I would remember much of what I learned when I was studying my degree of Philology.” / Photo from: fabianvorderegger com. Airbus 2050 concept