Saturday, April 7, 2007


Let me begin by saying that teaching is not a piece of cake. Some folks consider it as a trouble maker. By definition, I actually mean that Teaching Resembles Our Understanding Beyond Life's Experiences. During my university period, I've met a lot of teachers who were very intelligent and have had wide knowledge of a subject matter. We dread the first day of class. In addition, most often than not, we regard them with great respect and reverence. Oh, how we would even wish to be like them unconsciously while meticulously examining their looks and gestures. However, when it comes to teaching the course, some of them fail. I just couldn't digest what they were trying to reveal. I was sure I needed the course but I ended up skipping my class and regretting why I ever took it up. Dreading became a dead-end and respect turned into rebellion.

My point is knowing what you're teaching doesn't guarantee that you can teach. Teachers have to be careful about this. We have to target how to deliver the lesson to the student. The danger arises when students suddenly lose interest on the subject and start to pretend they're listening when they're not. I must admit that until now, I'm guilty of this at times (especially when I don't like the student's attitude toward studying and would rather go out than study at night). Of course, we teachers know what they need to study which might be different from something that they just want to talk about. Nonetheless, it would not harm us if we try to stoop down on their level and find out what strategies would help them grasp the concept better.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

WORD habits?!?!

ESL teachers need to be conscious about what I call students' word habits. What are these?

Well first, these are common errors of students that they always use when talking. Some of them are the famous because of (S + V) (instead of because (S + V+) ex. Because of you did not remind me, I totally forgot, before (instead of ago) ex. I arrived here 10 minutes before, the means (instead of that means) or what mean( instead of what does it mean?), and the list goes on.
The next meaning might raise a few eyebrows among teachers saying that as long as the student is correct then let's leave it at that. I don't know with you guys but sometimes, we have to discern their need. And not just that...we have to teach them how to properly use the words because whether we like it or not, most of the time, students don't blame themselves for such things. What I'm trying to say is students often use words that are synonymous to a word they already know because they want to increase their vocabulary skills. The danger is they might be using the words inappropriately. So then we have to redirect them. In addition, teaching them synonyms as you go about your business will help them use those words and make them acknowledge that need.
By then, minimizing or eliminating word habits won't just be as such, but rather, it will enhance the critical thinking of your students regarding word selection in a technical and social sense...

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

my online class

For more than 3 years, I have been teaching ESL to foreign students. It was both challenging and nerve-racking at the same time. One day, my student told me that when she goes back to her country, she feared that her skills in English would disappear. Somewhat upset about what she said, I realized that perhaps, people like her have no avenues to speak English or to talk to a foreigner in English and that sooner or later, all her efforts and money spent for studying would all end up futile.
So then I came up with an on-line class that primarily aims to help them maintain their level and apply the things that they have learned or acquired. I hope to help them improve as well but definitely, the most important thing for me is to let them practice. In addition, I want to earn as well.
My fee is just from P180-200(philippine peso) per hour so it's around US4.00. I don't want to charge that much coz it's not my call. People might say that I'm degrading and depriving myself of the worth that I deserve. For me, establishing trust is more difficult to deal with than talking about money.
If anyone of you wants to inquire or has something to say about on-line teaching or just teaching, you can post it here.

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

from something something else..

Having graduated from my university some time ago, I had a sentiment but I didn't fully expect that life was meant to be difficult once you move out from your comfort zone (you know...asking money from your parents...yadda, yadda, yadda) into a world where Darwin is the famous scientist. I landed into a job that I have some skills on but was far from my major. To add more challenges, I handled foreigners who , by the way, made me like know who i mean? My first teaching experience was a mess! Besides the feeling of being underpaid, I couldn't accept the fact that they weren't taking a bath (hey, i'm not trying to generalize my statement ok). My next job(still the same task) made me feel more comfortable with handling money...I was so overwhelmed that I forgot to take my post-graduate plan seriuosly. I made a lot of improvements regarding teaching though. Whenever I teach, I have this uncontrollable need to feel better than my students and thus, the only way to do that is to study, study, study...the thing that I've never intended to master and teach. Before I knew it, I was thinking about better ways to improve and earn money. I guess, I can say I'm satisfied although not happy.