James’ Philosophy Teaching Statement

Hello everybody, next you’ll find two links. One is for the video of my Philosophy Teaching Statement which aims to show what AT THIS MOMENT are my sensations about teaching. The other one is for my brand new blog about education. This is part of my teaching experience too and after the last class talk, I’ve decided to do it because is a good way to express and relate how is my teaching exprience going. I hope you enjoy them.

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rqSilcOsVEg
Blog: http://thoughsoneducation.wordpress.com
WebQuest: http://codigo911.wix.com/wqandteaching

Greetings,
James Acevedo Pedrozo

TODAY LANGUAGE IS A MEAN, NOT AN END

 

In this text you will find our understandings of bilingualism, the guidelines, the technology immersion and what we consider are the most important components in teachers today

 

Bilingualism

First we would like to take into account Mora´s annotation on the conference Have we told our children why they should learn another language?: “stop thinking language as a way to learn about others, but to teach others about who we are and even to teach ourselves who we are (…) the beauty of having multiple languages is that you have more ways to express yourself”.

By this we can see that the idea implemented on children since young is that the aim when learning English is to know other cultures, other countries, to study abroad, to get involved in the globalized world, and to go out from where they live and where they´re from, forgetting their history; but what about if we taught our students “I am learning English to share my ideas, my point of view, and my way to see life with others, so they can also enhance their knowledge from me ”.

It´s as if the native English speakers are privileged to have English as their mother tongue, meanwhile others have to strive to be accepted and included in the globalized world and have to learn English as a foreign language, even though they don’t want to.

Another point to touch is that meanwhile in the Colombian context, English has the feature and limitation to be seen as a foreign language; it will have the consequence, as shown in the results on the examinations (the majority of the students don’t achieve the level required: B1), hence the objective should be to embrace English as a second language, so the Government not only sees <bilingualism> as a priority for the economy and tourism growth of the city, but instead as a personal growth for teachers and students, where there will be a complementary feedback and will permit an immersion to share with others.

 

 

Guidelines

The curriculum guidelines appear as a result of many years of research with teachers and their institutions in order to diagnose and design a plan to be followed by all those who every day attend educational institutions, in this case students, to develop communicative competence in a second language through the development of autonomy on the part of the students to enrich their own competence.

In this sense, the Ministry of National Education has focused its priority as students to be bilingual, is then intended that students can have a more intimate approach to a second language and the teacher appears as the guide to perform this action. It refers the government is not intended that students know specific contents of the second language but think of going more cock and develop skills that allow for a real communicative act that will allow students to interact and share knowledge through a second language.

Guidelines extra input that offers teachers is the opportunity to develop and create teaching materials that will improve the performance of their students in the classroom more smoothly and effectively. This covers the basic skills – writing, speaking, reading and listening-that help students to get a better contextualization and relevance in relation to a second language.

 

The technology immersion

Education has been defined only as a set of organized practices that are governed by rules that must be met in this way, when you try to integrate TIC in education is no stranger to the fact that uncertainties about possible improvements are presented education, that is because it is considered to have a new experience which involves direct contact with new technologies will not enable a “real” education but rather is presented as a distractor for a serious education.

Now in our educational establishments we can observe the implementation has had new technologies in the process of learning a second language, in this case English, this is manifested in the easy access we have to information and how we can continue practicing beyond of what is learned in the classroom and develop autonomy that will allow to be better every day.

Thus, the use of internet with their social networks are striking features of the second half of this decade, which has encouraged a new way of thinking about learning and rationing have been shown to have an informal education that occurs outside the norms of an institution – also allows for learning about a particular topic .But how can you achieve a learning without having a formal education? This usually happens when a person is seen to act and its analyzing through trial and error, taking a direct approach to information, reading on our own, encouraging the development of autonomy that are essential to create a mature being who reflects about their actions and what the consequences of such acts and having contacts with people who are learned in the topic of interest to point us to a path of self-improvement.

 It is inescapable to recognize that we learn all the time in different contexts , in many ways and from different sources that allow the baggage of enriching our knowledge , skills and values ​​itself. The environments in which we have been learning have typically undergone significant changes with the integration of ICT in our educational processes through the internet.

In this sense, globalization has led governments to stipulate in their competences schools must develop its students to be at the same level of developed countries in all different career fields , all ensuring a quality education.

 

The “good” educators today

The position statement of CEE of English Education involves three main dimensions, the first one is teaching and learning of English broadly, here the teacher is interested in educational theory and research and from here he will encompass a wide range of intellectual content, literacy practices and communicative genres for preparing students of any age. It is worth mentioning that the goal of English Education is to cultivate an understanding of self and others mediated by language. For this, English educators understand that to achieve this goal, they must have a good preparation (which involves continuing professional support of teachers of English at all levels of Education), the teacher will now educate for diverse contexts, in order to communicate knowledge in the classroom and further on, in the world. The last dimension is the inquiry process into teaching and learning of English, in this part the teacher will have the knowledge that English Education is built upon diverse areas, some of them are: linguistic, philosophy, psychology, anthropology and sociology. From here, the teacher will gain the multi-modal inquiry and will be able to give a successful English Education.

 

Melanie Mollan and Anderson Gonzalez

COMMUNICATIVE COMPETENCE IN THE FL STANDARDS III: PRAGMATIC COMPETENCE

Today we’ll go over the last component of the communicative competence: the pragmatic competence. We will continue the discussion along the same lines as the previous two, using the resources we have as per the syllabus.

Use the questions we have posed in the first two discussions as the basis of today’s work. Also, think about the following consolidating question:

  • Let’s return for a moment to James’ comment in the first activity (linguistic competence). As you reflect on the three competences vis-à-vis the standards…
    1. How big is the gap between the expectations in the standards and the idea of communicative competence and today’s classroom realities?
    2. Whether we like it or not, teacher education programs are usually the culprit. What can programs like ours do to help bridge that gap (besides what we’re trying to do now)?
    3. What revisions should the ministry do to the standards in light of these ideas about communicative competence?
    4. What revisions should the ministry do to the standards in light of the ideas about new learning, technology mediation, multimodality, etc., that we have discussed in class?

You know the drill… so I’ll see you on Wednesday.

Dr Berry

Communicative Competence in the FL Standards II: Sociolinguistic Competence

Good morning.

We will continue the discussion about the connections between the communicative competence and the standards. As we did before, you will use the following resources (all of which are in Dropbox):

  • The FL Standards document
  • The readings suggested in the syllabus
  • Any other resource that you know and want to bring to the table
  • Your own intelligence and skills

A quick reminder of the ground rules:

1. You will always work in groups of three (there are nine of you, after all), as follows (I decided to use the alphabet as selection criteria!):

Team 1: Alicia, Anderson, Andrés
Team 2: Mateo, Melanie, Melissa
Team 3: James, Juliana, Nathalie

Each team will figure out a way to work together (use all the social media and online messaging options at your disposal: Facebook, Whatsapp, Skype, Telegram, etc.)

2. We will distribute the standards by grade clusters: Grades 1-5; Grades 6-9; Grades 10-11. However, for each exercise you must choose a different grade cluster and no two teams can pick the same grade cluster.  To aid your decision-making process, here’s the suggested distribution

Team 1: 1-5 | 6-9 | 10-11
Team 2: 6-9 | 10-11 | 1-5
Team 3: 10-11 | 1-5 | 6-9

What’s the logic behind it? Well, you should be knowledgeable enough of the standards for all grades, even if you may never get to teach them! 

QUESTIONS FOR THE DISCUSSION OF THE SOCIOLINGUISTIC COMPETENCE:

1. In our last class discussion, it was established that you already possess some basic understanding of the competences that comprise the communicative competence. With that in mind:

  • Which are the sub-competences that comprise the sociolinguistic competence?
  • Why is the sociolinguistic competence necessary in today’s language ecologies (Mora, 2014)?
  • Which subcompetences would you prioritize for your grade level? Which would you leave out, if any? Which would be the most difficult to introduce, if at all?

Remember not to answer the questions a priori, but in light of the definitions for sociolinguistic competence AND the close reading of the standards! (You can always use the CEFR as a guide.)

2. Look at the suggested readings (Lems, et al., 2010, Chapters 3 & 8; Nation & Newton, 2009, Chapters 3 and 7). What suggestions can you find in the readings that can help you link the standards to the sociolinguistic competence? Be specific!

Make sure to add plenty of comments before 5:00 today. They will be the basis of our discussion on Wednesday… and I think it’s important that we do have the discussion.

GOOD LUCK!

Dr Berry

Communicative Competence in the FL Standards I: Linguistic Competence

This is the first of three exercises we’ll carry out to relate ideas about communicative competence to the standards. For this exercise, you must use the following resources (all of which are in Dropbox):

  • The FL Standards document
  • The readings suggested in the syllabus
  • Any other resource that you know and want to bring to the table
  • Your own intelligence and skills

There are some ground rules for this exercise:

1. You will always work in groups of three (there are nine of you, after all), as follows (I decided to use the alphabet as selection criteria!):

Team 1: Alicia, Anderson, Andrés
Team 2: Mateo, Melanie, Melissa
Team 3: James, Juliana, Nathalie

Each team will figure out a way to work together (use all the social media and online messaging options at your disposal: Facebook, Whatsapp, Skype, Telegram, etc.)

2. We will distribute the standards by grade clusters: Grades 1-5; Grades 6-9; Grades 10-11. However, for each exercise you must choose a different grade cluster and no two teams can pick the same grade cluster.  To aid your decision-making process, here’s the suggested distribution

Team 1: 1-5 | 6-9 | 10-11
Team 2: 6-9 | 10-11 | 1-5
Team 3: 10-11 | 1-5 | 6-9

What’s the logic behind it? Well, you should be knowledgeable enough of the standards for all grades, even if you may never get to teach them! 

QUESTIONS FOR THE DISCUSSION OF THE LINGUISTIC COMPETENCE:

1. On Monday’s discussion, we pointed out six sub-competences that comprise the linguistic competence. Which would you prioritize for your grade level? Which would you leave out, if any? Which would be the most difficult to introduce, if at all? – Don’t answer this question a priori! You must answer this question in light of the definitions for linguistic competence AND a close reading of the standards!

2. What suggestions can you find in the bibliography to link the standards to the linguistic competence? Be specific!

Make sure to add plenty of comments. We will return to them in the first half of our next class after Easter Break.

GOOD LUCK!

Dr Berry

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