TEFL Forum - Help & Advice
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There are times when you meet a class for the first time and you immediately become aware of a student with ‘attitude’ … to put it politely. You can almost hear the theme tune to the Omen films in the background as the student looks on in a sometimes condescending manner, slouched in their seat while using their mobile phone. You might notice that the other students try to avoid the problem student – this may indicate that the student has an issue with everyone, not just you, and is something which is important to remember. Here are five tips that might help you deal with ‘demon in the classroom’:
Should a teacher ever break a school’s rules? If so, when? A few years ago, I faced a situation where if I didn’t break the regulations, I would have been haunted by the consequences. I worked at a high school for boys in the Middle East as an English teacher. One of my students had been raped by one of his peers. After serving a six-month sentence in prison, the rapist was bizarrely returned to the victim’s school.
Split level classes can feel like teaching two or more classes at the same time; they certainly tend to demand more energy and monitoring – some might describe it more as patrolling! Your higher-level students may get bored and can then be disruptive while your lower level students lose motivation and become disengaged. Here are five tips to help you cope and keep the students engaged:
Every teacher wants to create the appropriate dynamic in the classroom – one way of helping to achieve this is by ensuring you know your students’ names. Not only does this give the students a morale boost when they hear you calling them by their names, but they'll respect you for making the effort to get to know them. It also makes it easier for you to write student reports and monitor each student's progress. Here are five easy ways to help remember who is who in your classroom:
If you are an experienced teacher, what tips would you give someone new to the ‘chalk-face’? Here I’ve listed five tips that have helped me over my 20-year teaching career. Have a look – do you agree or disagree? What would you add?
You’ve been learning a new language for about a year; you’ve taken classes, done the home work, and traveled in the country of your target language. You show up on time, you grind out grammar structures, and your language exchange partner is now one of your closest friends; yet you’re not getting any better.
It would seem you have hit a language plateau.
On the morning of the 25th anniversary of completing my introduction to TEFL course, I got one of those new email things from someone who’d been on the course with me and with whom I’d kept in occasional touch.
Congratulations! You’ve been teaching for a quarter of a century!
A nice enough message but in context rather perplexing and I wrote back ‘You too!?!’ only to be corrected: ‘No, I’ve taught one year twenty five times.
How can we tell if a TEFL job ad is legitimate or not? Unfortunately it is getting increasingly difficult with some fraudsters creating multi-page school websites and paying for company-named email addresses. You will even be able to speak to someone on the phone number provided on the website. The golden rule is that you should never pay any fees to the school – you might pay fees at the embassy for a visa or pay a travel agent for an airplane ticket, but never ever pay the school money. Here are a few warning signs:
If you are considering studying a BA in English, then why not consider a degree which incorporates a TEFL certificate? This will provide you with a vocational qualification, teaching experience and potentially a means of earning a salary while you are a student. Here teflhub interviews Dr Roberts from Cardiff Metropolitan University and Dr Chick from the University of South Wales to find out more.