Emotions are a natural part of life and learning. Emotional ups and downs are a normal part of language learning and use. While some emotions can be supportive and facilitative for language learning, others can cause problems leading to inhibitions and a reluctance to use the language. As such, it can be helpful If a learner is feeling especially stressed or anxious, it will be difficult for them to concentrate and they may be reluctant to engage in classroom tasks or communication. Continue reading
Tag Archives: English Language Teaching
ELT podcasts you should be listening to
Flashback: Late 2014, a couple of colleagues and I are on Skype (yes Skype!) talking about our love of podcasts, and what we’re currently listening to. At that time, the podcast du jour was Serial, an investigative journalism podcast that addressed a possible miscarriage of justice in the US, which started in October of that year and has now been downloaded over 68 million times! A podcast which according to Sherrill, (2020) (1) helped move podcasting from a niche activity to a mainstream media platform. During our conversation, we discuss the lack of ELT podcasts, and one thing led to another and in March 2015 the first episode of TEFL commute dropped.
Flashforward: January 2023, it’s estimated that there are over 5 million podcasts with over 70 million episodes between them (2). Of that, 105 of those episodes are TEFL commute, and in the seven years since we started there is now a burgeoning ELT podcast range for teachers to get stuck into covering many angles.
Aside from their enjoyment value, podcasts are an excellent way of squeezing a little bit of continuing professional development into our busy lives. Something we can listen to, while doing something else. Listening on demand, unlike video on demand does not tie us to a screen.
ELT podcasts contain interviews which allows us to hear from renowned ELT professionals. They also give us new and differing perspectives on educational topics and provide us with things we can try out in the classroom. Space limits me from mentioning all the ELT podcasts out there, but if you’re looking for some to get started then hopefully these five will help you on your way. Continue reading
4 Tips For Developing Teacher Confidence In The Classroom
Most teachers have been there. One student disagrees with your answer and next, other learners start to disagree, ‘that’s not what you told us last week, teacher….’ Suddenly you are no longer sure if what you told them is actually correct. Even though moments of self-doubt can be healthy to keep teachers on their toes, moments like this can also make teachers feel less positive about their teaching abilities and affect teacher confidence. Continue reading
Volunteer Teaching: My Experience Teaching English To Refugees
Two Americans, Two Brits, a Spaniard, an Australian, a Swede, a Polish, a Norwegian and an Italian. The small (but mighty) team that built the new free shop known as the Szafa Dobra or Wardrobe of good in Krakow, Poland. Over just a few weeks this small team of volunteers working for Drapen I havet/A drop in the Ocean and Internationale Bund Polska rallied to set up the free shop. From finding a location to stripping and painting walls to sourcing electricity and unpacking countless cardboard boxes, it was no easy task. Not only this, but the team were also volunteer teaching in the evenings – a busy few weeks! Continue reading
Effective professional development for English language teachers
We all know good quality teaching leads to better learning outcomes. It’s therefore in the interests of everyone involved in education, whether this be government authorities, schools, parents, or the students, that teachers are well prepared and practice professional development throughout their teaching careers. Effective professional development also contributes to better job satisfaction and is an important factor in teacher wellbeing. Despite this, English language teachers (EFL and ESL) are often left to navigate the professional development journey themselves and find the time to carry it out. Continue reading