Let there be light


The Steve Brown Blog

[This article was first published in English Teaching Professional, Issue 85, March 2013. A number of the issues addressed in this article have come up again in other posts and comments on my blog, so I thought I should post it here as well. ]

In Issue 82 of ETp, Adrian Underhill and Alan Maley put forward the suggestion that we, as English language teachers, are perhaps not placing enough importance on the ‘dark matter’ of teaching, that is to say the unpredictability of the classroom situation. In practice, lesson plans tend to act merely as a starting point, and the ‘real’ teaching exists in the teacher’s ability to improvise. Most experienced teachers will be familiar with scenarios where unplanned lesson segments become critical in terms of maximising learning.

Real learner engagement

The idea that teachers need to consider, value and respond to student contributions has been widely…

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