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Role of the teacherFollowing intense internet research to find a suitable, succinct definition for the? Role of the teacher?, no suitable result was found. It could be due to poor internet search skills but perhaps more likely the answer cannot easily be summed up in one sentence. This research paper examines the course material and looks at what has been taught on the role of the teacher. The purpose is to summarise the key elements graphically, look at how they interrelate and identify prominent teacher roles. At the end of the research paper, the question is revisited: Can the role of the teacher be summed up in one sentence? The teaching subjects covered can be grouped as follows: 1. Course content (subjects) 2. Process & Methodology 3. Teaching Techniques 4. Resources 5. The teacher & class environment Looking at the subjects covered in 1-4, the content can be largely defined and/or stated. They are largely prescriptive. When looking at the teacher and class environment, it is harder to define. Why? Well, we could consider groups 1-4 to be more task-led. They have a purpose and are aimed at achieving a result to a required standard. They will be used when thinking about and planning courses and lessons. When looking at the teacher in the classroom, a whole new element is introduced ? students! Suddenly the role not only has to manage the course itself but additionally manage the relationships and environment in which the teaching takes place. In looking at effective ways of managing these relationships, different teaching roles are employed (Unit 1 pages 2-5). In effect, the teacher?s role needs to create the optimal environment in which students learn and teachers must change their style and approach accordingly. These roles are interchangeable and should be invisible, but certain roles emerge as being more frequently used than others, particularly during the Engage, Study, Activate (ESA) phases of a lesson (Harmer 1998). For example, the organizer and facilitator roles feature prominently, and it is interesting to compare these to perhaps more traditional teaching approaches which might have included controller and assessor roles more prominently. On further examination, the teaching role can be split into two sections, pre-lesson planning and preparation, and, the lesson itself (see Fig 1). Looked at in this way, it is classroom management that makes an important link between these tasks. Situated just below the ESA lesson (Fig 1), it is where the teacher thinks about how the lesson will be delivered. Classroom management requires both planning before and managing during lessons. Classroom management looks at the more tangible aspects of the subject, but a recurring theme throughout the course encourages students to find exciting, challenging and effective methods for teaching. It helps create a picture of an EFL lesson, best described by the words fun, interesting, inspirational, professional, vibrant and dynamic; the environment one of discovery, enjoyment and progress. It has a character and a personality, and the teacher is using lots of different materials, techniques, ideas and roles, in a way that is unique to the teacher and group of students. Fig 1: Teaching subjects covered In summary, we might say the teacher?s role is to provide students with the necessary teaching elements in an environment which leads to achievement of student goals. It may or may not be a suitable definition. However, we can say with some confidence that the role of the teacher is complex and detailed. There are professional standards to be met, rights and responsibilities understood. The above graphically represents the key elements taught, but where does it show judgment skills, professionalism, energy, enthusiasm, excitement, involvement and motivation. They are hidden in attributes and skills, and that?s worthy of its own research paper. References: ITTT Course material Units 1-20