This is how our TEFL graduates feel they have gained from their course, and how they plan to put into action what they learned:
B.P. - USA said:
Aside from just refamiliarizing myself with a lot of basic grammar points, this course allowed me to think beyond the rules to the usages and structure lesson ideas around them slowly and methodically. In my previous experience as a teacher I felt at a loss for how to teach specific grammar points to a mixed level class without resorting to their first language. I also realized through this course that in monolingual classes, translation is actually detrimental to learning and should only be used when absolutely necessary and all other methods exhausted. In the past I?ve used it occasionally to show the students that I understand their struggle and want to learn their language, too, but there are other ways of accomplishing those goals outside the classroom and keeping the classroom an ?english-only Zone?. This course gave me more experience planning student-based exercises over teacher-based ones. As a teacher in the past I?ve focused more on teacher to student interaction simply to maintain control over large class sizes, but trying to find ways to incorporate more student-centered tasks into my next teaching environment will not only reduce the copious amounts of overtime hours spent checking/grading papers, but more importantly empower the students to take a more active role in their english studies. In the past I have created my own materials to accommodate my students? english level. This course has exposed me to utilizing more outside resources and made me realize that they can easily be altered to my purposes. Just because a worksheet contains something that I know will be too easy or too hard for various students, that?s no reason to reinvent the wheel with every lesson. The list of course books provided by this course has given me a starting point for future teaching environments. This course has also inspired me to be more organized with my lesson plans? aims and goals. In the past I planned out entire lessons including timing and stages, but never formatted them for others or myself to revisit or share. I always thought through what my lessons were trying to accomplish, but I never committed those thoughts to paper to hold the lesson accountable afterward. Practicing with the formatting provided in this course has improved my ability to stay goal-oriented and focused when lesson planning. In general this course has given me a number of ideals to strive for. In the perfect classroom situation, I will collect and/or create materials perfectly suited for my students? level and interest, present them in a way that gets my student excited, obedient, and motivated to excel, and evaluate my students? performance in a precise and practical way. All of which will allow me as a teacher to inspire my students to take pride in themselves, surpass their own expectations, and become the best global citizens they can be. In reality, there will be an onslaught of factors inhibiting this notion of ?perfect classroom? and making it seem impossible to reach even the simplest of ideals. But striving to achieve these ideals is always the challenge of, the journey toward, and the reason for being a great teacher.