Discovery Learning / Authentic Teaching

Teaching is not acting

I remember when the adjuncts were about to go off to class, some would say, ‘show time’. At first, I agreed with that sentiment - that teaching was putting on a show for students. I quickly realized, however, that I didn’t want to be acting when I was teaching, I wanted to be myself.


My thoughts on gate duty

It’s not a punishment. It’s not going to kill you.

Thai students actually really appreciate having foreigners there doing something such as gate duty. Moaning about it makes you look a bit pathetic.


Some teachers and schools DO care!

Postbox letter from James

While there is always time for fun and games, teaching anywhere, including Thailand, should certainly not be a "non-stop party" and by suggesting otherwise it trivialises the whole role of education


Interviewing Foreigners

Being interviewed in the street by English students

Taking to the streets and talking to complete strangers is something no Thai student would do out of their own volition. It is clear that most – if not all of them – do it because their English teacher imposed it as a mandatory assignment.


The natural order of things

Not all students are created equal or should be treated as equal

In the best interests of the students who are capable, interested and who want to learn, some kids have to be left behind. That's why our school has streams.


Where do you stand on gate duty?

Do you approach those extra responsiblities with commendable gusto?

For those readers who have spent their teaching career cooped up in private language schools, gate duty is when a foreign teacher at say a government or Thai secondary school is told to stand in front of the school building – usually in the morning or at the end of the school day - and look like an asset to the institution.


People without formal teaching qualifications

I'm talking about those without as much as a TEFL or CELTA certificate

Some would say controversial words from Steve. But what is it about untrained teachers that really gets his goat?


Who gets the call when their arms are raised?

Which student gets the teacher's questions and why?

Here are the different groups of students within a typical class. They are quite distinctive and there's not really much of a gray area between them.


Dealing with the troublemakers

Discipline: tips on control in the classroom

Troublemakers. We have all seen them do their thing, causing mayhem and disorder in the classroom; perhaps you were even one yourself at some point during your time as a student. Troublemakers are the bane of every teacher's existence and they make our job go from difficult to pounding headache and hair-tearing proportions.


I don't want to learn!

The biggest teaching hurdle: motivation

Motivation in the classroom, both from the teachers and the students, is essential for learning but it is a tricky balance to strike since the two are so interconnected; if the teacher loses motivation, so do the students and if the students lose motivation, so does the teacher.


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