William Bradridge shares some ideas on how to make lessons work if you are teaching with minimal resources in the developing world.
If you are headed for a developing country to teach English, then don’t pack your iPad. The smart IT suite available to you where you did your training will be a long-lost memory: instead, wonder whether your classroom will have any chalk today.
So how can you plan for teaching English in a country where you’ll be lucky if you have a regular supply of electricity? Here are a few tips before you set off to help you get prepared.
- People often love speaking about themselves, so use your students as a resource. Get them to tell you about their lives and show a genuine interest in them. For example, consider establishing a regular routine of short 10 minute student input slots in each lesson. If you are teaching youngsters, establish this as a time for “my precious object”, where one at a time children show and tell something from home. It will give you a glimpse into their culture, history and daily lives, while giving them an opportunity to speak and share with their classmates.
- Bring lots of realia from home when you go; maps, photos, menus, forms for completion etc. Remember basics, like scissors, Blu-Tack or colouring pens and paper. You’ll be glad to have these to hand when you get to your destination to find the cupboard bare.