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Teachers and teaching styles in Poland


Merry Wanderer 1 | 14  
24 Jan 2008 /  #1
Czesc everyone,

In a few months, I am off to Poland as the head of an English camp and I have a question for you Poles about teachers and teaching styles in PL.

As with all countries the approach to teaching, education and of course teaching is very different, I was wondering if you guys could give me an idea about how teachers teach, what strategies do they use and what are the main focuses of the classroom and learning?

I want to try and provide the best learning experience I can for my students and if I come in with an English style that is completely alien to my students it might well be detrimental to their learning.

Any suggestions ?

Cheers Tom

p.s. I could go and look this up in a book but to get 1st hand accounts is so much more helpful and illuminating. :-)
James Revan 1 | 66  
24 Jan 2008 /  #2
Well in Poland, it all depends on who will be teaching you. If you get a teacher for "old school" or a guy right after getting a degree, you can consider yourself lucky. They are full of passion and really want you to learn something. Passion in teaching is almost, if not the most important thing, you have to show students you really like what you are doing.

The one thing that teachers in Poland should avoid is using to many "technical words" often, why? It just getting your "audience" bored very fast. Try to tell them some stories from your own life, it gets students "on your side" very fast. Don't be too soft, that is the most important thing, polish stundent don't have respect for teachers that are too soft. Im not saying that you should punch every one in class if they get annoying... Damn, cant explain it clear... hope you get what im trying to say.

It's always a good idea to do something funny before clasess start. I remember my history teacher, one time before he got into the class, he carefully looked inside the classroom, checked if nothings gonna fall on his head, and then got in. I looked very funny, everyone was laughing. He was a perfect teacher for polish students, made people laugh, but didn't let anybody "get on his head". Many times he was singing when we did tests.

When teaching in poland you must find the balance between being a teacher and a friend for students, cause you must be both, that is the only way for effective teaching.

Sorry for my english, i hope you can get the message from what i wrote here.
OP Merry Wanderer 1 | 14  
24 Jan 2008 /  #3
Dzięki James,

That is a fantastic start, I remember from last year that keeping control could sometimes be a REAL problem.
I will certainly take these points down, I am considering producing some helpful points for my teachers which they can use as a suggested 'Polish' guide and these will definatly be there.

Tom

p.s. Don't worry about your English, it seems very good from just reading that post. Certainly better than my duffer's Polish. :-)
lowfunk99 10 | 397  
24 Jan 2008 /  #4
Hi Tom

Will you need any assistance at the camp? I am working on my certification right now. I am willing to work relatively cheap to gain experience.

Brian
Foreigner4 12 | 1,768  
24 Jan 2008 /  #5
Interesting...
I'd say, whatever you do, put the oweness on them to do the speaking. Make sure it's motivating and actually gives them a reason to communicate in another english. if they are rowdy or bored that's a clear indication that either motivation or stimulation provided by the teacher and or materials is lacking. Encourage them through proper preparation to do the lion's share of the communication in both questions and answers.

As far as correcting, it really depends on what you can do well and the language being focused on.

Ensure that whatever vocabulary or grammar you want them to practice (as a main goal) is either pre-taught or just remind them of that if they know it BEFORE your activities.

moving between being the "teacher" and observing facilitator can also work.

I'm not sold on the idea that a teacher can actually teach a language at all. A language can be explained only to a degree; I think it's common enough that some teachers confuse their teaching students about a language (or just talking a lot)with students actually acquiring language skills.

Good luck
Seanus 15 | 19,669  
27 Jan 2008 /  #6
Put the onus u mean Ian, sorry, couldn't resist it. I like the CELTA and NOVA approach where the emphasis was on STT, not TTT. Callan was way too much TTT 4 my liking. My current schools are a bit of both. Talking and 'getting stuck in' is important but speaking is not 4 ur benefit, rather 4 theirs. I like giving pairwork activities and monitoring (thinking about tea/supper). I try not to analyse what I teach too much, I just get on with it.

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