confidence

Teaching ESL to adults

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confidence

Unread postby Sauveterre » 30 Oct 2008, 22:09

I have just started an English course in our litle French village. I thought about half-a-dozen people might turn up and it would be nice and cosy. I have 18 people, some of whom have come from further away! It was quite a shock.
They have varying degrees of English altready - most at least remember what they learned at school. I have been trying to plan very carefully and going along with what happens during the lesson, but please can someone tell me how not to be scared to death? I'm so nervous, I'm sure it must show. :?
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Re: confidence

Unread postby Peter Easton » 31 Oct 2008, 08:19

Pretend they're all naked...
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Re: confidence

Unread postby richalmers » 31 Oct 2008, 12:40

It's only natural to feel scared when facing a room full of strangers. The best way to overcome this natural feeling is to stop being strangers to one another. You can do this by being open with your students and letting them get to know you. You then get to know them and they're no longer a group of strangers but rather a room full of friends.

What's the problem with being scared or even of your students realising you're nervous? Be honest with them and tell them that you are nervous about facing so many new faces. Every one of them has experienced what you are going through in some situation or other and will completely understand.

Understand, too, that they are probably feeling nervous as well. Every one of them is also facing a room full of strangers, and will be very nervous about making mistakes, seeming to be stupid, worried about their pronunciation.

Sympathise with them and realise that you're all in it together.

Oh, and enjoy the privilage of teaching people who have taken the trouble to come to your lessons and obviously want to learn.
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Re: confidence

Unread postby Sauveterre » 02 Nov 2008, 15:10

Thank you both. I have since lost two older ladies who were really floundering, wouldn't even try to speak (which was a shame) and gained a driving intsructor who is a "life and soul of the party" type, so with your advice too this week was much better!
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