Englishdroid’s Maxims of English Language Teaching are the distillation of years of experience in the classroom. Here they are:
- If it moves, teach it. If it does not move, put it in the
resource files. If you cannot put it in the resource files, switch it
- The success of a classroom activity is in inverse proportion to the time and effort spent preparing it.
- Most activities take longer than planned, even when you allow for this in your plan.
- The best lessons happen when the Director of Studies is not present.
- If the lesson seems to be going well, you must have overlooked something.
- If they do not understand, try again, then give up.
- If a language point is really not worth teaching, it is not worth teaching well.
- A bad teacher blames the students. A wise teacher blames the previous teacher.
- An activity in the hand is worth two in the resource files.
- Do every listening exercise and you will never need to cue the tape.
- Faint heart never taught TOEFL.
- He that laminateth materials and storeth them shall reap the benefits thereafter.
- He that preppeth not is a genius or a fool.
- Hi-tech, lo-learn.
- If you are late, the Director of Studies will be in the corridor.
- If you are late and the Director of Studies is not in the corridor, you are late for a teachers’ meeting.
- If you phone in pretending to be sick, the following day you will be sick.
- Other teachers’ students are prettier.
- The photocopier will jam a minute before class.
- You will usually be one handout short.
- The recording is always on the other side of the tape.
- Whatever interests the teacher will bore the students (and vice versa).
- Better jobs in other schools are advertised the month after you renew your contact.
- How to identify the type of class you are meant to be teaching:
- If students are looking bored, it is General English.
- If students are looking bored and wearing ties, it is Business English.
- If students are sitting in silence, it is Conversation.
- If students are looking desperate, it is English for Academic Purposes.
- If students are running around screaming and damaging the furniture, it is a children’s class.