This comes from an online course for Spanish teachers that I tutor on. One of my trainees said “I’m from another planet when it comes to technology”.
Yo también soy de otra planeta: Inglaterra . Pero he vivido más de 30 años en España, y muy a gusto, por una sencilla razón: nunca he cuestionado nada, siempre he acceptado todo, jamás he pensado “En Inglaterra eso se hace de otra manera mejor…”
Y a l@s que tenemos que vivir ahora en otra planeta, la planeta digital, que es aquí y ahora (o sea, cada uno de nosotros), nos conviene adoptar una actitud similar: acceptarlo y hacer lo posible para que no nos tomen de guiris, no para que nos accepten a nosotr@s, sino para que nosotr@s adoptemos su manera de vivir.
Pero, por nuestro bien, no deambulemos por sus calles pensando “soy guiri” . No sé si me explico…
A guiri is a pejorative word for a foreigner in Spain. Classroom technology is a question of attitude, not knowledge.
The amazing Larry Ferlazzo pointed me to this: what it means to be great teacher, described in no more than 6 words (!).
Guess you could have a list of six adjectives, or six qualities…
Mine would be “Glad you are there with them”, because if you don’t actually want to be there with your students, you’re a non-starter: no one will want to be there with you.
On any given day, every day, like, really like, being there with your learners, whoever they are, in whatever circumstances.
On his excellent A-Z of ELT, Scott Thornbury has an interesting post on rapport, in which he quotes Jim Scrivener as saying “whereas rapport is clearly important, it is also notoriously difficult to define or quantify”.
To me, rapport has always been a question not of whether your students like you, but whether or not you like them.
Do you actually like being in the classroom with them, however difficult they can sometimes be?
Do you see getting them to do things that lead to learning as constantly being an enjoyable challenge, no matter what the circumstances?
If that’s not the case, your students will never enjoy being with you. If that’s not the case, rapport is impossible.