Let’s Improve the Feedback Sessions and Enjoy the Process!

Dear FELT Summer School Fellows,

I’m still thinking about our ELT experience during the first round of the summer school “Teaching English to Primary Learners”.

FELT Summer School aims to focus on interactive ELT methods, bring you the ELT flashcards for primary learners that will help you improve your teaching and your pupils’ learning and increase the student talk during your lessons. The teacher training programme offers you free resources and techniques, educational videos, demo classes and ELT workshops on learner-centered approach.

When I’m trying to find an easy and effective way to define the learner-centered approach, the words of Mr. Pius Frick, the country representative of the Foundation LED Moldova, come to my mind. Mr. Pius Frick has mentioned that “in a learner-centered approach, we don’t focus on how much the teacher teaches, but rather on how much the learner learns”. In other words, we know a teacher works hard to plan a lesson and uses different techniques in teaching, even interactive activities, but still the results are measured by what and how much the learner has learnt.

I remember one of the summer school participants has objected that there is an impression that FELT School’s main concern is the pupils not the teachers. I do believe a teacher’s achievement is evaluated taken into consideration the amount of what the student has learned during a given lesson or course. At the same time, I understand that it is not easy to accept the suggestions for improvement and maybe we are wrong as well by trying to give the feedback to all the participants using the same techniques of PLUS, HELP, PLUS, no matter how good the intention might be. As we have experienced during the teambuilding activities, we need to be ready and open for the feedback, otherwise we are not able to receive the HELP during these sessions. We’ll keep to three suggestions for improvement during the HELP “phase”. However, in order to improve the process of analyzing a lesson and giving feedback, we’ll change the structure of the feedback by giving the teachers the opportunity to choose from 4 options of feedback depending on the teacher’s needs and ELT experience.

The options are structures according to the following levels:

Level 1: From no experience in teaching English to the 1st EL I taught.

The teacher asks for feedback on specific elements of the lesson. The observer is announced beforehand what these elements are.

Level 2: From a modest experience of one week/ month of teaching English during the university teaching practice or a year of ELT via extracurricular activities or tutoring to a lesson in the school environment, observed by young or experienced teachers in order to get feedback on specific elements of the lesson.

The teacher asks for feedback on specific elements of the lesson. The observer is announced beforehand what these elements are.

Level 3: From a modest experience of ELT in a school environment (from one to 3 years) without any experience on giving and receiving feedback from an EL teacher or other qualified person to a lesson in the school environment observed by a school EL teacher or other qualified person

The teacher asks for feedback on specific elements of the lesson. The observer is announced beforehand what these elements are.

Level 4: From a three to five years ELT experience in the school environment to a feedback session on specific elements of the lesson and the lesson as a whole, documented by the observation form and the lesson analysis written by an experienced school teacher or university lecturer.

Let’s change the structure of the feedback session according to our needs and enjoy the process!

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