My Teaching Philosophy as a language teacher.
Throughout my experience as a language teacher, I have forged a very critical point of view of teaching in which I consider three imperative elements to reach educational excellence. The educator, the learners and the environment where the magic that we so call "learning" happens are key elements to understand my own vision of teaching and learning in a Foreign Language classroom.
That being said, before considering what is teaching and the role of the teachers, it is important to understand that for me learning is the capacity of absorbing everything we have in our surroundings to use it in our advantage. In other words, learning is a process in which we intake the input to transform it into a useful output. A simple example of this is when babies learn to speak. At first, they listen to every single word their parents say and after a while they start repeating and using these words to get something (some attention, food, water, etc.). The same happens when people are learning a new language; they listen, repeat and then produce.
As a consequence, teaching is the ability to help others to learn. We, language teachers, should help learners develop their skills in our area of expertise by providing or modeling the context that they need to learn a specific structure, set of vocabulary, idiom, etc. We create the context as we provide enough input so that the students can intake the information and eventually produce the language. Every single person has the ability to learn without a teacher and the digital era has changed the role of the educators. This is why our role is to guide, mentor, motivate, encourage and facilitate information to help the students improve themselves more efficiently. Parents are also important in this process when we have young learners, but from them I (and I guess that every teacher) only expect commitment and respect for the teacher's work.
"I never teach my pupils, I only provide the conditions in which they can learn"
My teaching philosophy as a language teacher is totally student-centered. I believe that the learning process happens in every student’s brain in a different way, but it is our job to evaluate how the students learn better to provide them with the right activities that make them meet their potentialities and embrace that potential to face the real world in the future. I don't teach just a language, I show the students a whole new world by using a target language. It is for that reason that I don’t believe in the standardization of the education system. We should be able to assess students’ progress in different ways and not just exams.
Having considered all this, in my practice, it is more convenient to foster an active and project-based learning through a communicative and social approach with a didactic and dynamic direct method. The students learn by doing and I think that the combination of these ideas provides the language teachers with the best tools and environment to help students exploit their potentialities while at the same time they learn a foreign language.
"Learning is an experience, everything else is just information"
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