Teacher Diaries: Ms. Alison – Teaching Philosophy

The hope to help students learn at their own pace and explore their personal interests is what my teaching approach derives from. I believe every individual has his/her unique experiences that shape one’s character and ability, and no one should be judged solely on how many marks he/she can get in a test.

I like to start off the lesson by a little bit of casual conversation. Even just a short chat will help me acquire important information of my students – how they spent the holidays, how tedious they find a particular lesson at school is which movie they like, etc. Spending some time talking not only enables me to get them more tailored materials which they will be interested in, but also allows the students to express themselves and build intimacy with me.

Being flexible in teaching is very important, especially when my students vary a lot in age and learning capability. Doing grammar and writing exercises is thought to be a chore, if the students are made to answer every single question one by one. For younger students, effective acquisition of English is achieved through allowing them to express their creativity. A certain degree of freedom can be given, for example, give them a marker to draw whatever they like and teach them new vocabulary accordingly. I have also realized that mature students benefit more from discussion and swapping works, which allows them to know they can possibly achieve as much as their peers do.

As I am self-studying Italian, I truly understand how my students struggle with learning English without a strong foundation. I aim to create a positive learning environment that the students will get to love learning English and they will be self-motivated to explore more after class!

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