[quote=“White Amazon”]The reason why they can’t get anything right is because all the shiftless shits who posed as teachers before you got the class weren’t able to teach them anything correctly.
If I were to own a buxiban in Taiwan, my first rule would be not to hire anyone under thirty with blond hair and blue eyes.[/quote]
Actually, they try too hard to get things right. I don’t blame the backpackers, I blame the curriculum handed down from generation to generation all the way back to Confucious.
Language is art, not science.
To that end, writing is the pudding wherin lies the proof. Even the best student is going to see where the problem areas are through writing.
How I maximize my writing classes are to get them to read their own samples aloud . In so doing, they are giving themselves a chance to recognize their own mistakes. Do this enough times and that particular mistake will disappear entirely from the students’ bag of errors. It is through the ear that languages are learned. Thinking or reading to one’s self are not going to get the same results as actually speaking the text.
So, trial and error over rote learning is how I base each and every lesson, from basic grammar to advanced writing. Each mistake is an opportunity for a lesson, not a chance for chastisement. Once a student is comfortable in this method and willing to go out on a Confucian limb by not trying to be perfect, the following process occurs:
-Translation between languages during message creation fades.
-Error self-recognition skills develop.
-Self-correction begins to take shape.
-Students learn to own their mistakes.
-Students master target language by learning to Think In English.
It is so simple that students can hardly believe it and go through extraordinary lengths to make it difficult. I spend more of my time training them to let go of their Confucian precepts than I do teaching grammar points or syntax. The worst question a student can ask me is, “Why?” There is no why, there is only when and how.
As an educator, think of yourself as the voice inside the students brain that recognizes and prompts mistakes. If you do this, they will eventually make you redundant. That is the endgame.