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Showing posts from December, 2015

Teaching English in East Asia: 10 Year Anniversary

The New Year marks our (my wife and me) 10th anniversary of leaving South Korea, where we both taught English at Sookmyung Women's University.  I taught in the TESOL certification program for in-service and pre-service English language teachers and she taught in the General English Program for undergraduate students.  Except for my summer job in 2011, we haven't been taught English in East Asia since December 2005.

What has changed in the last 10 years? Although I haven't taught English in Japan and South Korea for 10 years, which is double the amount of years I taught in those countries, I have been keeping up to date through research and social media.  The research has helped me better understand the English language policies of both countries, but social media has been more informative regarding the cultural and professional experiences of English language teachers.

Social Media By the start of 2006, most social media platforms did not exist or were in their infancy.�…

Developing a Mindset for Coordinating a Curriculum

Nearly halfway through my first year as curriculum coordinator at an intensive English program (IEP) in Southern Illinois, I've had the opportunity to view English language curriculum and instruction from multiple angles.  My first year requires me to teach through most of the levels of curriculum from beginners to advanced language learners.  I've been absorbing the ideas and opinions of my faculty colleagues, my administrative colleagues, and my students.  These viewpoints have helped me gain a better understanding of what the current curriculum is and what the current curriculum should be.

Positive Teacher-Learner Relationships  A positive relationship between a teacher and a learner is more important than any curriculum.  This idea is definitely reinforced at where I work, and it is the key component for learner success.  I want my colleagues to know that I value this more than any adherence to the curriculum.  Besides, the curriculum should be designed for the students an…