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Learning with a real teacher and a structured course helps you to stay motivated and disciplined
Private 1 on 1 Skype lessons
Your teacher spends all his/her time on you and you do not have to wait on other students.
Your teacher will provide you with as many online learning materials as you want. You will get YouTube videos, audio files, interactive exercises, pdfs and printable documents.
I am a passionate non- native English teacher. Teaching is a big part of my life. For that understanding, I am a lifelong scholar.
I believe in using music in English teaching. My approach is that we do not speak the language, but we sing it.
English bears a unique melody, rhythm as well as intonation.
Halina from Poland
1. British English can no longer serve as an optimal, reasonable model of English language use. Not after the Brexit campaign, fuelled by lies, racism, culminating in deaths of a British MP and a Polish migrant. The Leave campaigns used British English to make false promises, mis-represent facts (to the point of possibly risking criminal litigation), and divide British people – and they won. The Remain campaign failed to engage on any level beyond fear – and it lost.
2. American English can no longer serve as an optimal, reasonable model of English language use. Not after Trump. His presidential campaign “took relentless aim at institutions and ideals”, presented a pessimistic, polarising vision of America, steered clear of facts, policies or rational arguments – and it won. The Clinton campaign failed to engage people whose momentum was felt in the Democratic Party with Sanders still in the running – and it lost.
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When we decide to teach adults, the awareness, as well as comprehension of whom we teach and what
we learn, is essential here.
1) Adults do not want to waste the time.
Some adults take language courses because of a job requirement while others have their particular
goal to attain (such as a language exam or a professional interview). Adults expect direct,
practical benefit. All of them will raise the similar questions
• What for,
• Who (is my teacher?),
• What else could I achieve instead?
• Is the time well spent?
All lessons must have a definite outcome, perhaps even a practical takeaway. It is necessary to
define specific profits at the end of the lesson and associate the benefits to the individual
2) Adults are reflective learners; they think about
• what is challenging or where I require more support
• different learning strategies and self-evaluation
• maintaining a sense of responsibility for learning and achieving goals
3) Motivation is varied, and flexibility is crucial.
Teachers have to be flexible and ready for different approaches, wide-ranging content or even
unconventional paths to lead to the same goal.
Creating a context for meaningful learning is one of the tasks.
4) Mature students feel the need for direct benefit as well as valuable language skills.
Learners are looking for a solution to an exact problem at hand, immediately.
• The fundamental question is: “What should I do to get this to work?”
• Mature learners usually want to accomplish a particular task, or at least, see a noticeable
benefit for the future.
• Adults want to use language for a real-world reason.
5) The different abilities of adult learners are evident.
Child and Adult Learning Characteristics
- Rely on others to decide what is important to be learned.Accept the information being presented at face value.
Expect what they are learning to be useful in their long-term future.
Have little or no experience upon which to draw, are relatively “blank slates.”
- Decide for themselves what is important to be learned.
Need to validate the information based on their beliefs and values.
- Expect what they are learning to be immediately useful.
- Have substantial experience upon which to draw.
- May have fixed viewpoints.
- They may have a recognized life context that determines their learning.
The adult learners need a greater sense of cooperation between the student and
teacher as they go on through the educational process (Zmeyov, 1998). Furthermore, experienced
individuals may bring supplementary skills such as a higher level of maturity and a different
understanding of world matters and geopolitics than traditional students (Byman, 2007).
Personally, I am against using grammar boards, linguistic terms and other abstractions in language
teaching. However, if they can help the mature student why do not explain the grammar rules?
EVOLVING THEORIES OF LEARNING
The modern psychological study of learning can be dated from the work of Hermann Ebbinghaus (1850–1909), whose well-known study of memory was published in 1885. Other early studies of learning were by Edward L. Thorndike (1874–1949), whose dissertation on problem solving was published in 1898, and Ivan Pavlov (1849– 1936), whose research on classical conditioning was begun in 1899 but first published in English in 1927. These theories focused on explaining the behavior of individuals and became known as behavioral theories. These theories use a stimulus-response framework to explain learning and dominated psychology and education for over half a century. Because behavioral theories focus on environmental factors such as reinforcement, feedback, and practice, they conceptualize learning as something that occurs from the outside in.
Behavioral theories provide very good explanations for certain kinds of learning but poor explanations for other types of learning. Operant conditioning, for example, is better than other theories at explaining the rote acquisition of information, the learning of physical and mental skills, and the development of behaviors conducive to a productive classroom (i.e., classroom management). In these situations, the focus is on performing behavioral tasks rather than developing a learner’s cognitive structure or understanding. Although classical conditioning frequently is dismissed as irrelevant to human learning (Pavlov’s initial research paradigm involved dogs salivating), this type of learning provides by far the best explanation of how and why people, including students, respond emotionally to a wide variety of stimuli and situations. The many types of emotional reactions acquired through classical conditioning include: anger toward or hatred for a particular person or group, phobias to a particular subject area or to school itself, and infatuation with another person. However, they are very poor at explaining how individuals come to understand complex ideas and phenomena.
But environmental factors are not the only ones that influence learning. Serious consideration of other perspectives began to enter mainstream psychological thinking about learning during the 1960s. For example, people clearly learn by observing others, and a learner’s belief about his or her ability to perform a task (i.e., self-efficacy) plays an important role in their learning. In 1963 Albert Bandura and R. H. Walters published the first formal statement of social-learning theory in their book, Social Learning and Personality Development. Social-learning theory has clear roots in behavioral theory but differs from these theories in significant ways. During the 1980s the theory became known as social-cognitive theory. Although essentially the same theory, the new name more accurately reflects the cognitive features of the theory and aids in differentiating it from behavioral theories of learning.
During the 1970s and 1980s conceptions and definitions of learning began to change dramatically. Behavioral theories gave way to cognitive theories that focused on mental activities and the understanding of complex material. An information-processing metaphor replaced the stimulus-response framework of behavioral theories. These theories emphasized that learning occurred from the inside out rather than from the outside in. During the late 1970s John Flavell and Ann Brown each began to study metacognition—the learners’ awareness of their own learning, an ability to reflect on their own thinking, and the capacity to monitor and manage their learning. During the mid 1980s the study of self-regulated learning began to emerge (see Zimmerman & Schunk, 2001).
Then, especially during the later 1980s and the 1990s, these cognitive theories were challenged by theories that emphasized the importance of social interactions and the sociocultural context of learning. The work of the Russian psychologist Lev Vygotsky (1896–1934) first became available in North America and along with the work of anthropologists such as Jean Lave began to have a major influence on theories of learning. Individuals were seen as initially participating in peripheral activities of a group (known as legitimate peripheral participation)before becoming fully integrated into group activities. Apprenticeship became a metaphor for the way people learn in natural settings. The notion that people learn by observing others, first articulated in social-cognitive theory, was expanded in a new context.
Traditionally, learning has been viewed as something that occurs within an individual. Individuals may participate and learn in groups, but it is the individual person that learns. With few exceptions, the educational systems in Europe and North America have adopted this perspective, if not entirely with regard to instructional practices, certainly in the evaluation of student performance and the assignment of grades. Many psychologists and educators currently consider learning to be a phenomenon that is distributed among several individuals and/or environmental affordances (such as calculators, computers, and textbooks) or situated (existing or occurring) within a “community of practice” (or community of learners). Both a social and a material dimension are involved in this distribution (Pea, 1993). For example, a student may use a calculator to help learn how to solve a three-digit multiplication problem (the material dimension) and/or work with another student to understand the proper procedures to follow (the social dimension). In either case, the student is not learning totally on his or her own but is taking advantages of resources (affordances) available in the environment. If the student is not able to solve a subsequent problem without the aid of the calculator or another student, then it is possible to see the distributed nature of learning. In such situations, participation or activity rather than acquisition becomes the defining metaphor (Greeno, 2006).
The evolution from behavioral to social to distributed to situated theories of learning was accompanied by new conceptions of knowledge (for a good discussion of these changes, see Schraw, 2006). Traditional theories conceive of knowledge as a commodity capable of being transmitted, more or less intact, from one individual to another. According to these theories, knowledge is something an individual acquires; when a student successfully learns it, he or she can reproduce the knowledge in its original form. In contrast, more recent theories conceive of knowledge as something each learner constructs or creates afresh rather than something that is assimilated in its preexisting form. According to current theories, truly “objective” knowledge does not exist, although something similar exists in the form of collective knowledge within a particular culture or discipline. Knowledge resides in the community of learners (individuals) that creates it and is distributed among members of the community and the various environmental affordances available to the group. Because each person constructs his or her own understandings, the knowledge they acquire is unique. Communities and cultures are composed of individuals with common understandings, and these groups provide opportunities for new members (e.g., children) to construct similar knowledge of the world through schools and/or a variety of informal activities.
The 1990s were dubbed “The Decade of the Brain,” and huge advances were made in neuroscience and how the brain relates to human behavior and learning. The study of how the brain relates to learning is in its infancy (for an introduction to some of the issue, see Bransford et al., 2006). An understanding of how the neurophysiology of the brain affects learning and cognition will add greatly to our understanding of human learning and have a large influence on future theories of learning. Nevertheless, a psychological component to these theories will remain critical for learning in educational settings. Education as it is presently understood is based on psychological processes and interactions capable of being influenced by instruction, and it seems likely that psychological interventions will continue to be important for the foreseeable future.
Wideo is a neat video creation service that allows anyone to create animated videos and Common Craft-style videos online through a simple drag-and-drop process. A couple of months ago Wideo started offering templates to help users start their video projects. Wideo templates provide a basic framework for a video’s theme. A couple of the templates that might be of interest to teachers are the slideshow template and the curriculum template.