Teach English in Longwei Zhen - Jieyang Shi

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This unit discussed games, writing, and speaking skills. The section on writing hit me the most. I have experience frustration both with my own experience learning to write in an L2, and many problems my students have writing in English. Writing tends to be done as homework most often, not much in class. Writing can be very time consuming. As a child, I struggled with spelling, but was an avid reader. I know that writing can create flesh memory and is a useful tool for memorizing material. I found it interesting that reading is suggested as a technique for improving spelling; with enough reading, a student will realize that a word looks strange and therefore is misspelled. I learned to read and write in English and Hebrew simultaneously as a child. While my English writing is much faster, my Hebrew writing is legible. As an adult, I moved to Japan and learned to write in Japanese. I noticed that my handwriting in Japanese was similar to a Japanese kindergartner. I also noticed that some of my Japanese students between age 12 and 14, had English penmanship comparable to an American child between age 3 and 4. I have been frustrated over my years of teaching EFL by both careless spelling mistakes and blatantly terrible handwriting. This unit explained that poor penmanship and spelling can make the reader perceive the writer as not caring or trying. This helped explain why I have gotten so frustrated. This unit explained that if the student?s L1 uses a different alphabet, of course penmanship will be an issue. Overall, Japan has a very negative view of both English and learning English, this creates an atmosphere where mistakes are both tolerated and expected. While that has frustrated me greatly, this unit pointed out that while the negative impression of English retards the overall English level in Japan, there are some legitimate struggles my students face when learning to write in English. I will attempt to be more sympathetic with my students plight.