Confidence Increasing Strategies: an Effective Tutorial For ESL Teachers
Since I am still relatively new to teaching, I felt it was important to reassure myself on why I choose this career path as well as my efficacy in the role. Self-monitoring is extremely important in both our personal and professional lives. Self-regulation leads to personal growth and that is invaluable in our lives. I believe that the teacher needs to be a student first. As a teacher begins to develop more experience in their role over time, naturally follows comfort and sometimes comfort can lead to complacency. I believe that students cannot benefit from a complacent teaching professional because the world around us changes frequently. Students need to be informed on the most up to date and accurate information concerning their education.
This post was written by our TEFL certification graduate Marcus W. Please note that this blog post might not necessarily represent the beliefs or opinions of ITTT.
I think it is important for teaching professionals to ask themselves how can they increase their confidence in the classroom by performing self-analysis now and again. Some practices that I believe will benefit English teachers in building confidence in themselves and their abilities, is to gather In-depth knowledge on teaching ESL vs EFL materials. An ESL classroom is one in which English is the national language. ESL is typically the term used in the United States, whereas EFL is more often the term in countries where English is not the native language. Students in ESL learn English in a foreign country where they are living and working. Their ability to hear and practice the language is fostered much more in its natural environment versus EFL students that do not have this luxury.
Also Read: General Thoughts on Lesson Planning
Adapting learning styles
Teaching professionals have many different responsibilities but perhaps their most important is managing their classes to ensure that lessons are effective, engaging, and interesting. Lesson planning is a vital element in teaching language effectively. The teacher needs to be prepared with materials/supplies, visual aids, practice exercises and activities to maximize class time and increase self-confidence in the lesson. Students will need accommodations based on several factors such as their age, language level, interests, and motivations. I believe that a true test of a teaching professional’s ability lies in how effectively and frequently they can adapt to different learning styles and make appropriate accommodations.
As well, to be successful, it is essential to consider the importance of being culturally competent when teaching grammar and vocabulary to these students. This helps to ensure that the needs of all students are effectively addressed. It creates a classroom environment that is both engaging and encouraging practice and mistakes. Also, good teaching practices include encouraging equal class participation and avoiding teaching exclusively to strong or weak students. Giving praise when students are accurate allows them to build confidence in their language acquisition. Teachers must build incremental goals into the lessons to provide both teachers and students with something to strive for. Lastly, the revision of lesson content is imperative to prevent complacency and ensure students are effectively retaining information.
Appropriateness of teaching contents
It is important to consider if the topic/ task being discussed and the vocabulary being used is appropriate for that group of students. This would be the most effective way to not only communicate instructions but also convey larger meanings to students. Lastly, classroom management skills will also be essential. It is also imperative to foster and develop your teaching styles and correction techniques used with students. It will be mutually beneficial for teachers to also foster confidence in their students as well as they're attempting to learn and practice a new language. Students should be encouraged to build independence by discovering language for themselves through self-correction techniques. In my opinion, the more time students can practice the newly acquired language, the better! Consistency is key to comprehension and teachers can limit confusion by using the same set of words for instructions.
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When teaching English as a secondary language to young learners it is very important to consider multiple factors that may affect the classroom’s environment. In my opinion, teaching professionals' primary focus should be to foster a classroom environment that is encouraging, reliable, and culturally competent. When students feel, supported and reassured, I believe, this is where success is obtained. I would define cultural competency as simply being considerate and respectful to the beliefs, practices, and linguistic needs of diverse populations. The ability to effectively develop cultural competence takes time and effort and should consistently be improved upon.
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