I got interviewed for a great blog primarily on children’s literature called Wontok Check out some of my philosophy of teaching and how I failed a ninth-grade class (as a teacher, I failed them. Not that I gave them all Fs).
Also I met Heidi via the TESOL Core Certificate Course. I had heard bad things about online classes and awful things about CELTA and other teaching certificates. That they were too basic or taught only one style of teaching, a lot of touchy-feely stuff, the instructors were all bitter failed ESL teachers who accepted no dissent. The TESOL course was none of these things. Great instructors who never told us anything but really helped us use our experience and basic principles of teaching to discover how to be better teachers. Fabulous readings, including the Don Snow book Heidi plugs on the interview page. And the class was primarily driven by online discussion which meant I learned a lot from teachers all over the world.
Already I’ve had great results from this course. I started a new student a few weeks ago and instead of my usual plan of going mainly by the textbook with a few supplementary materials here and there, I was encouraged to do a learner needs and interests analysis. We spent 90 minutes talking about what he wanted from English, what he liked to do in class, how he used English, what he was interested in. It built great rapport with him, I had more output from him that I could use to evaluate his English than if I had given him a test of some kind and I can design lessons that are interesting and useful to him. I think I’ve mentioned the TESOL course before, but even with 6 years of teaching experience under my belt, I’ve taken so much out of just the first part.