Native speakerism and the complexity of personal experience: a duoethnographic study

Issues in ELT

‘Native speakers’ are better at teaching speaking and should be given conversational and high level classes, right? They can’t tell a verb from a noun, though, so don’t ask them to teach any grammar.

‘Non-native speakers’ know the grammar better and since they know the students’ L1, they should teach lower levels, right? They’re never proficient enough, though, so don’t give them advanced groups.

Stereotypes, misconceptions and prejudices about ‘native’ and ‘non-native speaker’ teachers such as the ones above are rife in our profession. If you join any discussion on the topic, you’re bound to see more than one.

When we talk about native speakerism, we also frequently think that it always benefits ‘native speakers’. They get better jobs. They’re paid more. They get to travel around the world. However, this is just one side of the coin.

While native-speakerism has gained much attention in recent years, the complex ways in which it influences the lives and career trajectories of individual teachers has often been overlooked. So in this podcast Marek Kiczkowiak and Robert Lowe from the TEFLology podcast question some of the assumptions about ‘native’ and ‘non-native speakers’, as well as about native speakerism.

The podcast is based on a paper they recently coauthored entitled “Native-speakerism and the complexity of personal experience: A duoethnographic study”, which was published in the journal Cogent Education. In it, they take an innovative dialogic approach where the voices and personal experiences of the two authors come to the fore.

The article is open access which means anyone anywhere can access, download and share it completely for free. You can read the article here, or by copying and pasting this link to your browser: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/2331186X.2016.1264171

And if you enjoyed it, please Tweet it, Facebook it, Instagram it: social-media it around. And leave us a comment here too. We’d love to hear what you think.

Reference:

Lowe, R.J. & Kiczkowiak, M. (2016). Native-speakerism and the complexity of personal experience: A duoethnographic study. Cogent Education 3 (1): 1254171. Available on-line: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/2331186X.2016.1264171

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Interview with Cecilia Nobre

Cecilia Nobre, Commuter bus classroom, Conferences, DELTA, EFL, Second Language Acquisition, Teacher training, Teachers' Stoires, Uncategorized
In this episode of the TEFL show Robert William McCaul interviews Cecilia Nobre,  an ESOL teacher, a regular conference speaker and blogger, about a novel way she was involved in to learn English on that long commute to work!
We also chat about her experiences as a language learner & how she managed to learn English so well, why she’s learning Czech now and how she’s helping non-native English teachers improve their proficiency.
Cecilia, from Brazil, has been teaching since 1999. She graduated with a BA in Portuguese and English and went on to live in the UK for 3 years where she taught Portuguese. She’s done a postgraduate course in English and she’s been teaching 1:1 online for 3 months and is developing her career as an online teacher. She is particularly interested in materials design and applying Corpus L in ELT contexts (classroom and digital materials)
She also chose and developed the materials for ‘English on the Road’ (Business Result by Oxford and I created the course syllabus)
See the commuter bus/ classroom news report (in Portuguese):
 
Her latest blog post:
 
Find Cecilia on Social Media:
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Brexit will cut the numbers of higher education students in the UK by a third.

Brexit, DELTA, EFL, Higher education, International English, Issues in ELT, Uncategorized

 

Brexit places the higher education industry in the UK in severe jeopardy, according to survey. Universities will struggle to attract the top international students. Lots of teachers I know will lose their jobs as a result of this, people with families, who pay taxes. Not to mention the loss of of jobs and revenue to accommodation providers, transport providers such as taxi drivers and coach companies, restaurants, tourist attractions etc. Independent language schools will no doubt suffer as well. Towns like Bournemouth, which rely on the international student business, will be worst hit. Meanwhile the international competitors for the international student market such as Australia, Canada and Malta cannot believe their luck.

http://www.independent.co.uk/student/news/brexit-international-students-in-the-uk-after-eu-referendum-hobsons-survey-a7161661.html

Key skills teachers need to have successful classes – Teaching English chat

Issues in ELT

Tomorrow, Friday 8th July we’ll be chatting about ‘Key skills teachers need to have successful classes’. The chat will take place on Twitter and on Facebook. On Twitter you can take part by using the hashtag #techat We’ll be tweeting from @theteflshow. If you’re new to Twitter, you can check out this explanation of how Twitter chats work. On Facebook we’ll be chatting on Teaching English British Council FB page, which you can find here.

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Before the chat, you might want to listen to one of our previous episodes on qualities of effective teachers.

Looking forward to the chat and hope you can join us 🙂

Don’t forget that all our podcasts are also available on a number of music services, and the videos are on our YouTube channel. Just click on one of the logos below to be redirected the service. If you enjoyed one of the episodes, we would appreciate if you rated it or left a comment.

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Teaching lexically, materials writing and the CELTA – interview with Hugh Dellar

Issues in ELT

In this episode we talk to Hugh Dellar, an experienced teacher, teacher trainer and materials writer. We start off by discussing the lexical approach, what it is, how it differs from other ELT approaches and how teachers can utilise it. We then go on to talk about Hugh’s books ‘Outcomes’ and ‘Teaching lexically’, co-written with Andrew Walkley, and his latest project: London Language Lab – a language school right in the heart of London. We finish off by discussing Hugh’s recent post about the CELTA course and why it might promote native speakers.

As always, we’re looking forward to your comments. Do you see yourself as a lexical teacher? Why (not)? Do you think CELTA promotes native speakers? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.

hughHugh Dellar is a teacher and teacher trainer with over twenty years’ experience in the field. He is also the co-founder of Lexical Lab and co-author of two five-level General English series, Innovations and Outcomes (now in its second edition), both published by National Geographic Learning. His first methodology book, Teaching Lexically, is due out via Delta Publishing in July this year 2016 and he also co-runs a quality language school in central London – London Language Lab.

Don’t forget that all our podcasts are also available on a number of music services, and the videos are on our YouTube channel. Just click on one of the logos below to be redirected the service. If you enjoyed one of the episodes, we would appreciate if you rated it or left a comment.

 

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Teachers as Workers – interview with Paul Walsh part 1

Issues in ELT

tawsigThe TEFL show presents part 1 of the recent interview with Paul Walsh of the Teachers as Workers Special Interest Group (TaWSig) by Robert William McCaul. In this part we talk about some of the problems that teachers face in the industry: poor pay, low job security, a lack of sick pay, unfair contracts, compulsory unpaid duties such as attending meetings, homework correction, professional development programmes etc. Paul also talks about the frustrations of being a freelance teacher in Berlin- frustrations that ELT freelancers face around the globe. You can find TaWSig on Google+ and Twitter.

As always, we’re looking forward to your comments 🙂

Don’t forget that the podcast is also available on a number of music services. Just click on one of the logos below to be redirected the service. If you enjoyed one of the episodes, we would appreciate if you rated it or left a comment.

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Can we learn a second language like we learned our first?

Comprehensible Input, Issues in ELT, Learning languages, Methodology, Polyglots, Second Language Acquisition, Stephen Krashen, Teacher training, Uncategorized

Can we learn a second language like we learned our first?
Why do children seem to have such an easy time picking up their native tongue while we adults tend to struggle for years with a second language and never make it much beyond intermediate level? Can we acquire a language in the same way as kids do their first? Read my article on British Council Voices Magazine exploring some of the ideas of Steven Krashen & their classroom implications.

https://www.britishcouncil.org/voices-magazine/can-we-learn-second-language-we-learned-our-first

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Krashen’s theories of language acquisition- do they still have value in the ELT classroom?

Comprehensible Input, Issues in ELT, Methodology, Second Language Acquisition, Stephen Krashen, Teacher training

Robert William McCaul and Marek Kiczkowiak debate the merits of Krashen’s theories on second language acquisition. Can second languages be learned in the same way in which young children pick up their first language? What implications does this have for the ELT classroom? How much formal grammar should we teach learners? An old debate but an important one…

The Affective Filter

(Dr. M Bilash) The Affective Filter: what holds many potentially successful language learners back- anxiety.

What do you think of Krashen’s theories? Let us know in the comments section below.

Don’t forget that the podcast is also available on a number of music services. Just click on one of the logos below to be redirected the service. If you enjoyed one of the episodes, we would appreciate if you rated it or left a comment.

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Working conditions in ELT

Issues in ELT
Photo by Ian MacKenzie under Creative Commons from: https://flic.kr/p/bBucPk

Photo by Ian MacKenzie under Creative Commons from: https://flic.kr/p/bBucPk

In this episode of The TEFL Show podcasts we discuss working conditions in the ELT industry. While there are certainly some regions where the pay and conditions for English teachers are very good, it seems to us that in many countries teachers in language schools are not only severely underpaid, but may also lack basic insurance or sick pay. We discuss why this is the case and suggest several ways to overcome this situation.

If you’re interested in this issue, you might want to follow Teachers as Workers Special Interest Group. You can find them on Twitter @taw_sig and on Google+ here, where there is a discussion group.

Don’t forget that it’s also available on a number of music services. Just click on one of the logos below to be redirected the service. If you enjoyed one of the episodes, we would appreciate if you rated it or left a comment.

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