A to Z Reflections

A to Z Reflections

ISBN: 3-922514-95-2
Lieferzeit: 3 - 4 Tage Gewicht: 0.22 kg

Classroom reflections for Language Teachers and Others

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Twenty-six essays covering contentious topics within and outside the classroom. Written as discussion material for teacher training courses as well as for individual reflection, the book challenges the reader to reconsider existing values and habits. Leseprobe Know-How: What is know-how? It is the faculty of knowing the right thing to do in any contingency; specialised knowledge. Yet our world changes so abruptly and relentlessly. Updates on psychological and neuro-physiological knowledge and understanding are possibly only second to the changing knowledge in computer technology. The contingencies change and so must our know-how. But how many of us keep really up-to-date? Admittedly, the miserable pay conditions of most teachers mean that overtime and the lack of self-finance make it difficult to keep up-to-date. But is that an acceptable excuse when we consider our own self development? We spend most of our time helping other people to develop their abilities. Do we really not have the time to be concerned with our own? We must! Like everyone else, we are in a changing world, a developing world. Many academics feel that once they have qualified they are masters of their profession. But for how long? Again to quote Tom Peters: on the occasion of buying his first lap-top computer while by-passing the local, internal consultant, namely his son, he was received home with the comment. "Oh, you got one of the old ones! I think it's been out for almost four months!” Admittedly, in teaching progress may not be so fast. But I have seen too many colleagues committing in-house incest by visiting seminars from which they have only gleaned that they were doing the right thing; there was no reason to change, to develop. Stagnating instead of progressing. It is estimated that the average American manager spends up to 33% of his time keeping up to date! However, it is only fair to comment that many American managers think nothing of starting their day at 7 am and not getting home until 7 or 8 pm. I believe that in the TEFL world we are very fortunate that many, I would in fact say most, of our clients have no real measure of what quality teaching is. Even large companies seldom run effectivity tests before or during a training programme. In fact, I personally know of only one company in Europe that has done what amounts to an objective, detailed feasibility study of their language training needs and the qualifications and skills of their prospective suppliers. The idea that anyone who speaks English can teach it is, though not consciously known or admitted, still wide spread. Nevertheless, I am convinced that the day will come when clients demand guaranteed quality for their money. And then the value of know-how in TEFL will be recognised. The only way to stay in front long term is self-development, short and long term