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Interview at a Callan School


ssjseifertom 3 | 36  
11 Mar 2009 /  #1
Hello all,

I have an interview at a Callan school on Friday. I did not speak to the guy personally but he rung my girlfriend when I was out. He said they want to see if I have the qualities and such to become a Callan teacher. What are these 'qualities' they will likely want? I assume they want me to have an outgoing personality and a good British accent? I don't know if anyone here has been a callan teacher... except for seanus!
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
11 Mar 2009 /  #2
Dynamic, expressive and sharp. It's a very engaging and teacher-focused job. Keeping the attention of the students is important.
OP ssjseifertom 3 | 36  
11 Mar 2009 /  #3
I have watched videos and it seems very easy. All I have to do is talk a lot. I'm not a shy person and find it easy to talk to most people so I guess this would help.

Best advice for the interview?
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
11 Mar 2009 /  #4
Best advice for the interview? Speak the truth. Be open and communicative. Show an inane side to you, Callan is that way. It opened me up in funny ways.
OP ssjseifertom 3 | 36  
11 Mar 2009 /  #5
Show an inane side ay. So show I have a personality inside me and that i'm not just trying to be formal and polite for the interview. Thanks for the advice Seanus.
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
11 Mar 2009 /  #6
Exactly, the interview is short but your tenure will be significantly longer. They don't want conventional and methodical teachers. Just people who can put it out there.
dtaylor 9 | 823  
11 Mar 2009 /  #7
In what City is your interview, this could have a bearing on it.
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
11 Mar 2009 /  #8
Very good point. In Krakow, they will want you to be more prim and proper. I know a Callan legend in Gliwice. He went to Krakow but was put down and the DOS listened in to his lessons.

I've heard that some Krakowians are anal perfectionists. They think they are better, they are just asses tho.
OP ssjseifertom 3 | 36  
11 Mar 2009 /  #9
Yeah its in Krakow, at MAK school.
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
11 Mar 2009 /  #10
I'm saying my prayers for you, son

Nah, it should be ok
pgtx 30 | 3,156  
11 Mar 2009 /  #11
I've heard that some Krakowians are anal perfectionists. They think they are better, they are just asses tho.

lol.... thank you...
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
11 Mar 2009 /  #12
I knew you'd read the above. I didn't mean you, of course. You know the type tho, PGTX. If not, then I'll buy you some glasses ;)
pgtx 30 | 3,156  
11 Mar 2009 /  #13
nah.... that's a compliment...
;)
dtaylor 9 | 823  
11 Mar 2009 /  #14
Yeah its in Krakow, at MAK school.

Whats your name by the way, I work at MAK school, and will probably be doing the interview.
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
11 Mar 2009 /  #15
Dtaylor is the one that will be wurring his slurds ;)
dtaylor 9 | 823  
11 Mar 2009 /  #16
Depends which one he will be going to, MAK is divided into 2 different companies. Though now i'm interested to know what Wysp was talking about.

So which MAK school do you have your interview with?

Forgive Wysp, sometimes she can get the wrong end of the stick.
OP ssjseifertom 3 | 36  
12 Mar 2009 /  #17
ssjseifertom has commented on my youtube video insulting Polish women and our country

No idea why she wrote that, I commented on my FRIENDS video. I'll link you it if you want. You'll never believe he isn't polish haha. The school is in Nowa huta, I visited the school on Al. Pokoju last month but there was nothing going. This is the first I have heard from any of the schools I have visited since being in Krakow, I have been getting by with private lessons.
dtaylor 9 | 823  
12 Mar 2009 /  #18
Well sadly i'm at the school nearer to the center, pokuje and slaw, but i wish you luck at the huta school. Dangerous place to work, but cool all the same;)

When is your interview by the way, maybe i could give you some pointers about what the MAK schools look for.
OP ssjseifertom 3 | 36  
12 Mar 2009 /  #19
I heard its a bad place, hopefully not worse than the area of Nottingham I lived in, now that was dangerous! Thanks, i'll take Seanus' advice, I really need a job here and I prefer Callan Method to the standard way of teaching.

And thanks to Wyspianska! I even apologised to her last week in a private note for telling her to shut up and that she would love me... such a grudge over silly internet chat!

Its at the end of the week. I don't even know how to get there, but I'll get a tram to the end of Aleja Pokoju and try find it from there.
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
12 Mar 2009 /  #20
Callan will keep you focussed, it's very hard to teach hungover. It will give you some practice in interaction with students of various levels.

It will keep you amused.
delphiandomine 88 | 18,455  
12 Mar 2009 /  #21
It's worth asking to observe a couple of lessons before accepting the job if they offer you it - you'll soon see if the school encourages creativity or not. A Callan school that doesn't want their teachers to be individuals is likely to make you thoroughly miserable - so if you find that they're looking for a droid, keep well away.

Just use your instinct - and don't be afraid to negotiate your conditions.
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
12 Mar 2009 /  #22
Very true, delphi. My advice would be to go with the book initially. Stick with the answers given until you become relatively familiar with them. This will help you when you come to be observed. After that, you can experiment.

You have very little latitude when it comes to contractual negotiations. Things are relatively fixed, increments included.
delphiandomine 88 | 18,455  
12 Mar 2009 /  #23
Very true, delphi. My advice would be to go with the book initially. Stick with the answers given until you become relatively familiar with them. This will help you when you come to be observed. After that, you can experiment.

Yup, it will tell a lot if the teachers you observe don't change the material around. Even little things - like one question 'are you always willing to do things for other people?'. If someone says yes, then it can be fun to throw a pen/the book/whatever on the floor and ask them to pick it up.

Even sometimes, asking "why?" after a random question can get some interesting answers. If you find the school doesn't entertain this and sticks rigidly to the amount of revision/readings/writings/dictations, then it's not likely to be worth any amount of money.

One thing that stands out about Callan more than anything - some people will use the language and have fun with it, while others will repeat the 'expected' answer even when you'd expect them to be able to discuss something. The earlier ones will encourage you, the latter ones will make you want to throw yourself off the building.

As for negotiating conditions - sure, moneywise they might be fixed. But don't be afraid to negotiate on points such as teaching Grammar - I managed to get an agreement that I wouldn't teach anything 'new' to students when it came to grammar, for instance. I could, but I don't like it and don't particularly want to teach it.
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
12 Mar 2009 /  #24
That's strange. We had to teach grammar as a matter of course. If it came up as part of the new work, we couldn't just skip it. It's not that hard to teach really. Callan will teach you how to shortcut the teaching of it.

When I teach in my other schools, I use the whiteboard. In Callan, I taught them letters or showed them briefly at the lectern with a bit of paper. For example, a transitive verb is S V O whereas an intransitive verb is just S V. The same with passive voice, I just inverted the sentence. The verb stays in the middle. Quite simple and a quick way, suitable for Callan method learning.
VaFunkoolo 6 | 654  
12 Mar 2009 /  #25
What sort of class size does Callan work well with, S?
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
12 Mar 2009 /  #26
The maximum at any time is 12. I found 6 to be a good number. 2 to your left, 2 in front of you and 2 to the right. 12 with a beginner group is a nightmare, so exhausting it was. You cannot take the foot off of the gas pedal for long with them.

With higher-level groups, 4 is quite ok. You can discuss things a little more with them. Thank God that is behind me now. I'm more of a listener at present. The TTT at SU is significantly less. At Callan, you are the conduit through which everything flows.
VaFunkoolo 6 | 654  
12 Mar 2009 /  #27
one would have thought that to run profitable classes, and pay teachers a fair whack, callan schools would need to charge above average with classes this size... (?)
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
12 Mar 2009 /  #28
I'm not sure what goes on behind the scenes. They don't really pay teachers a fair whack, that's just it.
ukpolska  
12 Mar 2009 /  #29
That's strange. We had to teach grammar as a matter of course. If it came up as part of the new work, we couldn't just skip it. It's not that hard to teach really. Callan will teach you how to shortcut the teaching of it.

When I teach in my other schools, I use the whiteboard. In Callan, I taught them letters or showed them briefly at the lectern with a bit of paper. For example, a transitive verb is S V O whereas an intransitive verb is just S V. The same with passive voice, I just inverted the sentence. The verb stays in the middle. Quite simple and a quick way, suitable for Callan method learning.

Bloody hell for once I agree with you!!!
Callen on its own is a lost method and needs to be supplemented with grammar lessons that need to be assessed at each stage level throughout the book. There is even a need for extra English coursework to be included, because the callan method is mainly focused on oral improvement and doesn't really take into account the in depth use of writing and grammar use of English.

At least that is what we used when I was teaching Callan for over four years and our school had a 100% success rate in FCE and ADV English.
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
12 Mar 2009 /  #30
Stranger things have happened, ukpolska.

Over 4 years, geez. 3 years was a strain for me. True, Callan is speaking focussed and, even then, looks more at parroting than having fluent discussions.

Ah well, off to teach a lesson on crime now. Should be fun.

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