In most of the courses I’ve taught at language schools, I’ve felt that there is never enough time for students to adequately engage with the material. In particular, it is far too often the case that we teach one point, practice it a bit, assess understanding, and move on. However, this is not the way we learn. Mastery requires us to repeatedly tap into our resources and regularly apply it. Take dating as an example. One could argue that individuals who experience the most fulfillment in their love lives are those who reflect on what they have learned and apply […]
When the student is ready, the teacher appears. This cliché is as old as the groans its use induces. Overuse and dilution don’t discredit the inherit meaning, however. Learning, of course, isn’t appearing to a classroom and waiting for an instructor to “teach us.” We must be ready to learn. Easier said than done, you say? You got that right.
She clasped the outline of her ribs and fell to the ground with such uncontrollable laughter that any passerby would have been forgiven for thinking one of her organs was trying to escape from her body. I was just as confused as to what triggered the outburst. “What did I say?” I asked as I waited what seemed like an eternity for her to regain her composure enough to not sound like a cold, sputtering engine. “Estoy caliente,” she started, “doesn’t mean what you think it does!” My face invented new shades of red as I anticipated the rest of […]
When I first moved to Korea, I instantly set out to learn the language. Being immersed in the the culture, I assumed that I would naturally absorb the language and become fluent. To be honest, it started off well. I bought a few books, learned Hangul (the Korean alphabet), found a few TV shows with subtitles, and I fell in love with K-pop. Long story short, I had a treasure trove of content at my disposal to help me become a fluent speaker. Not only that, I had made the always crucial step of making Korean friends. Basically, I was […]
In a past not so distant, English teachers would walk into a classroom and teach English using texts that did not reflect the actual use of the language (“This is a man. His name is John Tory. He is Mr. Tory. Mr. Tory is sitting in a chair …”) [yawn!]. These ‘invented’ texts served the sole purpose of exposing students to different grammatical structures. This gap, however, was somehow bridged with the introduction of authentic materials in the classroom (e.g. film clips, newspapers, magazines, etc.). Now, with the advent of corpus research, it is argued that authenticity and frequency is […]