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Professional Development – What Is It And Why Does It Matter?

self-directed professional development

Asking a teacher about professional development is a bit like asking fish about the water they swim in. PD seems to be everywhere. It is often assumed and taken for granted, and the reasons for doing it can at times be transparent and at others pretty unclear. Sometimes, professional development can seem like an obligation, like something that is expected as part of being a teacher. Other times, it can feel like a natural extension of teaching. Continue reading


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4 Tips For Developing Teacher Confidence In The Classroom

A confident teacher pointing to herself with the writing: 4 Tips For Developing Teacher Confidence In The ClassroomMost 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


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Volunteer Teaching: My Experience Teaching English To Refugees

Leanne and her students during her volunteer teaching tripThe Project

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


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Effective professional development for English language teachers

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


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Is Technology Really Helping Us Teach Better?

Children on computers, using technology in the classroomWe know that there are lots of opportunities from technology in ELT – but we also see examples of technology doing what we know isn’t good from a teaching point of view. How can we make sure technology is working for teachers, and that teachers are really benefitting from new developments? Continue reading