Content Knowledge & Language Mastery
This blog post is about teachers of English and their own level of competence in English. I often interview teachers who wish to participate in courses such as the Cambridge DELTA or CELTA for which they have all the right attitudes and personal qualities, even the passion for teaching that would potentially make them great teachers but lack the necessary level which would allow them to do well on a course such as this and, of course, once the course ends, to perform well in the classroom.
Teachers of English need a high lever of competence in the following areas. They need to
- analyse language for teaching purposes and be aware of the forms, functions, meanings, pronunciation and register of the structures of English
- be both accurate and fluent in their spoken and written production
- to be able to use everyday colloquial and idiomatic language (both evidence of a fluent user)
- be themselves good models of spoken and written English
- identify and correct errors their learners have made
- be able to explain errors to learners – where they have gone wrong and why
- develop professionally through reading professional books and journals, listening to lectures, participating in seminars, conferences and workshops.
- produce good quality academic writing, which would enable them to participate in courses, write assignments and describe teaching both in these assignments as well as in their lesson plans
- be able to use old and new academic & digital literacies to research language or to find appropriate materials to supplement or replace unsuitable coursebook lessons,
How well do you measure up?
The only way to find is, of course, to apply, be tested and interviewed. This is a standard procedure and it is past of the regulations for acceptance into a CELTA course.