Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Something old, also new - teaching English

From the first histology prac that I taught in my Honours year at varsity - and continued throughout my postgrad years - to the academic lecturing block three years later; to the very many navigation courses I've taught and the week of primary school orienteering just last week... I really love teaching and my enjoyment and satisfaction just continues to grow. But, I don't want to be a full-time school teacher. I prefer courses, workshops and defined short-term periods.

And so, following my recent trip to Argentina, it almost feels like things have come full circle. Last night I started on a TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) course. My aim is to be able to use this to get back to Argentina to work there for a couple of months at a time, while working on my own Spanish learning. My plan is adult education, not children.

My bad experience at the Spanish school in Bariloche is actually a blessing in terms of learning experiences because I know exactly what it is like to not have a clue and to not enjoy lessons - despite really, really wanting to learn and absorb. From Spanish learning alone I've experienced excellent teaching (here), good teaching (there) and terrible teaching (there). I would not like to ever put my students through the latter. Ever!

My next three months are going to be even more crazyyyy than usual with a much increased course workload and teaching pracs, but I'm very excited about learning teaching skills, being more creative and learning more about my own language. It was through learning Spanish that I learned what a 'gerund' is in English - my native language!

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