Two weeks ago, we met lots of interested and interesting, highly motivated public school teachers at MEXTESOL. Everyone was looking for new materials, technology, approaches and techniques to make their teaching more effective.
These are the teachers that are going to make a difference in Mexican education and the lives of their students even though their students might not know it yet.
The life of the public school English teacher is not easy, and we aren’t even going to get started with what’s happening in the classroom day-to-day. The entire structure behind their work is in constant flux. There are many challenges to be met even before walking into the classroom.
An English teacher has to learn constantly, improve, and perfect a very special skill set:
1. personal English language skills
2. English language teaching skills
3. classroom management skills
4. technology skills
5. knowledge of ever-changing programs and standards
Then there’s the matter of grading assignments every night only to get up in the morning and face enormous classes of unmotivated students who would rather be texting on their cellphones in abbreviated phrases than learning a language that requires mechanics, grammar, phonology, and new vocabulary to get their message across.
Watch this space! We will be posting tips, suggestions, and training experiences to steer teachers in the right direction as they work independently or in small groups to meet the challenge of polishing their skills.