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Course Books or Jail Books?

Course Books or Jail Books? | ITTT | TEFL Blog

The topic may seem strange to some initially, but if you come to think about it, you see that a coursebook can be a deadline in innovative teaching.

Many teachers are used to going along with plans that they are given by their school supervisor or rather the old system they follow in teaching. It may seem practical for the marks that are expected by the end of the term by school authorities, while the true purpose of teaching is rather different.

Having a plan has proved to be a good way of pursuing education at all levels, whether it is the basic rules of language understanding or it is the advanced levels. A plan is what you call your approach to an aim which is done by both the learner and the teacher.

Having these facts in our mind, many instructors would suggest that having a coursebook as a guide in the pursuit of your lesson plan objectives can be quite beneficial and reassuring. Although it has been warned that a teacher must proceed with their lesson plan according to their preference where it has been being seen so much recently that the teacher's hands are tied to the coursebook or even paralyzed when they are taken from their books.

The problem becomes more visible when the teachers are asked questions that are not mentioned in the coursebook directly or clearly. Unfortunately, this can lead to a distrust in the teacher's authority or even the knowledge if the problem keeps being repeated in class.

By taking into consideration the mentioned problems, the real problem is much more severe, which is that the teacher will lose touch with their teaching skill as an innovative instructor. This could lead to drilling in teachers' classes which both learners and the teacher are bored and just wish the class to be over soon. Hopefully, some solutions are proposed for this issue which we intend to talk about them.

Try using new and different technologies in your classes:

Nowadays, every young person is associated with a digital device such as smartphones, tablets, laptops, etc.

It is clear to every person that young learners, especially at the age of 8 to 16, are quite curious about their own interests. Following just a coursebook in class for these learners can lead to their dislike of the subject being taught, and ultimately the desired outcome is absent where even if the marks are good yet the language acquiring is not done. A teacher must be able to engage their students in the way they enjoy their class so that they stay interested in the topic that you as a teacher are teaching them.

Using different games or their favorite celebrity lifestyle quizzes can be quite beneficial for them to learn the desired concept. So, don't fight the technology. Just embrace it in your class.

Having outdoor classes or activities:

This one may not be available for all institutes or teachers to provide, while it can be very encouraging for the students if possible to be done. As you may have noticed, learners, especially young learners, just want to see the point in your teaching, which the actual grammatical point can be of no interest to them. Having outdoor activities can be a great chance for your class members to like what you are teaching them and stay interested in a very active way.

Get out of your comfort zone

Most teachers would hang on to their coursebook due to its convenience provided for them to just do what they are asked by the principals while the student's proficiency might be of no importance to them. This way of teaching is very formulated and has no flexibility for the fresh mind of young and enthusiastic learners. Try having a different lesson plan which includes various activities such as role-plays, filling gaps, dialogues, or even storytelling about a common subject that the students learn. You would be amazed and feel flourished when you see how every learner is engaged when they see an active lesson plan which suits their daily life.

Students are not empty vessels to be filled in

We must be very careful to consider our learners as beings who are in our classes to learn something practical rather than just to be taught the lessons which are quite boring to them. Following the syllabus like a machine will eventually lead the class to a grey and pale place instead of a colorful and enjoyable atmosphere.

Aside from the solutions that are mentioned above for the issue of coursebook overuse, there are several ideas that can be brought into your class by you as the instructor to make your class a place where students would love to participate rather than a dull place for them.

Please feel free to share your ideas with me. I would love to learn more about this subject with your ideas.

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