Sunday, 17 June 2007

Learner training

To what extent have the concepts of self-direction or learner training influenced your own ELT situation? Do you think the implications they hold for institutional practice are desirable or possible, and what are the practical constraints?
Before starting the Teacher Training College I used to teach at an institute and at home. I thought I taught beautifully because I gave my students everything and lots of grammar and exercises. But when I started learning how to teach, it changed my life completely.
These concepts, self-direction and learner training, have changed the way I teach because, nowadays, I start from my student's needs so classes are suited for them and not just for me.
I believe that this is possible to be applied as long as the number of students and the institution allow you. the problem sometimes lays on the institution when they think we have to follow the syllabus and that's it, without thinking about quality learning but only on the "quantity" of exposure.

Bibliography:
Hedge, Tricia (2001); A Framework for Teaching and Learning; chapter 3(Discussion projects and topics # 9 - p. 103); O.U.P.

5 comments:

Gladys Baya said...

You've raised a most interesting issue, Lorena, when you state that there should be coherence between the teacher's aims and the institutional aims (perhaps you still remember our discussions on conformity in Psychology?). But then again, this applies to all educational aims, not just to the fostering of learner autonomy, doesn't it?
At the same time, I believe you shouldn't assume all educational institutions work along the same lines as the few you've already belonged to... What should matter more is what regulations say about the Argentinean current educational system, and what kind of education you would like to advocate. Then it'll be just a question of looking for like-minded colleagues! :-D

By the way, have you asked yourself what our Law of National Education says about this?

Love,
Gladys

Loreley said...

Gladys, you are right, I haven't worked in many institutions but there is always a syllabus you have to follow and complete.
I have read the Law for School Management and it also states things we are supposed to teach.
The Law doesn't care about student's needs, or at least that is not mentioned.
See you soon,
Lore

Gladys Baya said...

When you say the "Law for School Management", do you mean the same law I've referred to in my previous entry, Lore? Where do you find teaching content stated there? And why do you say it does not take students' needs into account, I wonder? I believe that clearly contradicts the spirit of Article 8: "La educación brindará las oportunidades necesarias para
desarrollar y fortalecer la formación integral de las personas"
. (see also Articles 11 and 67 - teacher duties).

Besides, in many educational institutions, you yourself build the syllabus you have to teach by, or at least have a word in adjusting it to each class you work with...

Regards,
Gladys

Loreley said...

We read the LEN for School Management (the subject). It is not stated there but at the beginning of the year you asked us to find out what the law said about foreign languages and the contents the law said should be covered. As the syllabus is already made (at least the contents), I believe the law is not taking into account student's needs.
Apart from that, the law contradicts itself in different parts of it so maybe, it will be also contradicting itself in this matter.
It is true that we as teachers build the syllabus but I don't know if it can be possible to predict what students want in advance to build a syllabus. I used to do that but at home because I didn't have to hand in a syllabus.
See you soon,
Lore

Gladys Baya said...

Dear Lore,
It sounds to me like you're rather overwhelmed now to look into official documents deeply... Don't worry, the link will always be there for you to come back to it when you feel "it's time"!
LOL,
Gladys