Following her recent presentation in our seminar series for English language teachers in the UK (video below), Johanna Stirling offers ways to deal with human ‘weaknesses’ in teaching situations.
|Scooped by Eszter Csudai|
Today's student generation... I don't think I need to say more. These two words tell everything I would only be able to explain in a pages length essay. Sometimes we teachers forget, that students tend to be more creative, it’s likely that they have better fantasy and it's also possible that they know more about the web than ourselves. The "digital natives" as we call them, won't ever be excited to listen to a lecture or to read a book. Researchers say it's also possible that their brain is structured in a completely different way, due to nonstop use of digital devices. As I see, the secret of getting them engaged lies in this sage advice: “When life isn’t the way you like it… like it the way it is.”
As teachers our task is not the “reshaping” of our students (to zombies, who will not be bothered by anything), but we shall rather seek the opportunities to get to know them better, to be able to engage them in activities they enjoy. This, of course, does not mean reckless use of computers, smart phones and other digital devices, but a thoughtful planning of how to effectively use and incorporate these into the course of learning. It’s not an easy task, and we were not really trained how to do this, but there are many tools and communities available for us on the web (or we can even take a free course at a university online - coursera.com). If we expand time on searching for solutions, we will not be disappointed by the result. I don’t have time and space here to list all the webpages, but here are three, which you might want to consider using: 1. http://livemocha.com/; 2. https://www.facebook.com/goVOXY; 3. http://quizlet.com/ .