The ABC of ELT

Teaching is like going on an adventure

Brad Patterson recently set not one but TWO blog challenges!

Having been a little quiet this last week due to leaving Ukraine and coming back to England for the summer, I’ve finally got round to

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Taken from by LazySunday

writing my response.

Teaching is like leading a trip on an adventure.

Pack well, but knowledge is more important.

Before you go on an adventure, you pack your gear and bring any essentiall equipment that you need. Of course, more important than that is having the knowledge of how to survive. You need to know how to tie knots, build a shelter and follow tracks. Having this knowledge, skill and practice is much more important than having a tent or other material.

Which is just like teaching. Knowing your subject, practising teaching and using this knowledge is much more important than coming in with a big rucksack of material.

The Journey is just as important as the destination

Sometimes we know where we are going and even plan our route very carefully, but we don’t always follow that. Sometimes we misread the map and find ourselves in the middle of nowhere. Fellow travellers can start to complain and lose faith in their map reader and we need to quickly show people the way towards our joint destination. Sometimes, though, we find short cuts and beautiful long cuts which everyone is glad to find. Knowing the terrain or map is important for this but sometimes the best hikes are when we ignore the map.

Likewise, teaching can be great or terrible when things go off plan. Sometimes students learn something new which they really appreciate or students just understand or don’t understand something. We need to get our groups to their final destination and help them get there whatever route they decide to take.

There may be dragons

Along the route you sometimes come across dragons or other monsters which need to be defeated. This can be difficult and hard but dragons always protect treasure. As an experiences adventure, sometimes we have to slay the dragon ourselves but, more often than not, we need to help our  fellow adventures defeat the monster as a team so they can face any other monsters in the future.

When we teach we come across peoples personal demons and we have to help them overcome these problems. Sometimes we directly help people and other times we need to let the group overcome the monster, helping from the sidelines.

Teaching and learning is exciting

I’d like to end with a reminder that teaching and learning, like adventures, should be exciting. The opportunity to communicate and learn more about each other is very exciting.

There we go. That was my little teaching is post on what teaching is like… As for the second blog challenge,

What experience, activity, or lesson that is completely non-teaching related has brought more to your classroom than anything else?

I have already made a video about what I learnt from being filmed for TV which you can click here to watch. 

About Chris Wilson

I'm an English Language teacher based in Krakow, Poland. I enjoy writing, using technology and playing the Ukulele.

2 Replies

  1. Dragons 😉  Thanks for taking up the challenge, Chris.  Glad to hear that you’re enjoying your adventures in the classroom, and have a blast back home this summer.

    Cheers, Brad

    1. Thanks Brad, thanks once again for the blog challenge 🙂

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