Hala J.M's Posts (8)

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"Chalk and Talk "

Another school year passed and the same questions cross my mind :

-How can we apply the four skills of learning English at schools ?

-How can we change the old ways  to  better ones if the number of the students is large and the textbooks should be finished during the school year ?

The teachers in most countries still practice the traditional teaching method which is :

"Chalk and Talk ".This phrase often used to describe traditional teaching.  It describes  the teacher in front of the group of learners, giving a talk on some topic. This method is suitable where the teacher wishes to impart theoretical knowledge to the whole group of learners .This old method can be described like this :

1- writing:Students can write some paragraphs and sentences and their homework, only.

2- Reading: They can read aloud the stories and texts in their books .

3- Listening :only to the teacher in front of them and to each other, sometimes .

4-Speaking : They hesitate and speak only few words.

So, the change is required if we want to apply the four skills in teaching English.

I read once that "language is not a sterile subject to be confined to the classroom. One of two things must be done: either life must be brought to the classroom or the class must be taken to life".

I think learners absorb more information from what they see than from what  they hear. So it makes sense always to include visuals, either on the board, chart or screen or through handouts or posters. The learners'attention  will be limited when they are required only to listen to someone talking.

Good practice is to introduce a variation by asking questions and also encouraging the learners to ask questions with group discussions.That means :

"Let the students help you to teach; they will then have the happiest of feelings about all their English lessons".

Now, what do you think ? Is the old teaching method "chalk and talk " enough to teach English ? and what are the ways to develop it in a classroom with more than 30 students ?

                                           Thank you for reading !

                                                        -Hala -


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In the fast changing world,public teaching is also changing.As part of the changes the teachers role and authority in the classroom .

In the past teachers used to be the major source of knowledge ,the leader and educator of their students ,they used to be the authority in the class, but nowadays teachers need to teach their learners how to gain the information and how to select and use them,but the main problem is that the role of the teacher is changing day by day ,and  teachers face many problems with the students and their families  .The parents blame the teachers for the failure of their kids and for their bad behaviours sometimes . Do you think the teachers role has changed because of the technical changes in the world that makes a teacher not the only source of information or it's the modern educational methods.

I think the student failure is really a teacher failure when a teacher fails to give positive feedback,and fails to use encouragement creatively .  Teachers can provide the information and lead the students to the right way of gaining the information and applying it correctly,but students should also work hard to succeed and get high marks .

The question is : who is responsible for the failure of  the students ? and why do you think the teacher's authority  has changed?


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What I have learned ...

 After nine months of teaching every year ,and when my vacation starts,I always ask myself these questions:

What I have learned this year  and what this job has  added to my personality .

What  I  have to do more to motivate my students: to make them first like the language, and try to improve  in all its skills .


Every year I can notice two kinds of students :

Those who want just to pass the exam, and others who want to make along term progress .that means teachers should be familiar with the learning needs of the students .This can help the students to manage their own learning effectively .I think first of all the teacher should make the students interest in the lesson and like the language ,then we can start to supply them with the information.

Teaching a language is different from teaching any other subjects ,because we have to be aware of many topics that we have to teach " Science , history ,astronomy ,computer , literature ..and of course to include the grammatical points in each unit .

This is really a tough question,because I learn something new every time I step inside the classroom!

I learn alot about how students get the information and apply it ,and about the language and how we can simplify it to the students .

But the most important thing I have learned is to think and act confidently as a professional , and to be  able to see  things from a perspective of the learners and trying to meet their expectations and points of view.

This is the heart of education ,when the teacher asks the students to think and encourage them to talk and share and we can check their understanding and growth.

 What do you think ?...How can teachers help the students and the learners more ? And What is the main thing the teacher should do to keep the class active and to open the minds of the students to the best way of learing English language ?



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FREEDOM: The breath of life

Freedom :The breath of life ....what this word means to you?

We know the general meaning is when it concerns with the national freedom of the society against all kinds of Imperialism and exploitation.people's freedom to own their country and build their society without any interference  from other countries.Heros wrote their names in the history by their bloods to get freedom for their countries.How many nations struggle and fight all over the world to get their freedom.The sense of freedom with the wisdom constitute our pride as a human being .


But what about the freedom within...inside us

For me..I can say that with freedom comes responsibility:it's the price of freedom

It's not only a matter of taking a decision or making a choice in our life ,but also to be responsible of our decisions,and of the freedom that we have.

Your life is a result of all the choices you make,If you can control your choices ,so you can take control of all aspects of your life.

The most important is to be what we really are.We change our reality for a role  or a reason.We change our sense for an act.We put a mask and hide our reality .So the freedom has got to happen inside first and to get ride of all the masks and be what we are.

The freedom is only be in doing the right things and be proud of doing them.


Some people think that wearing fashionable clothes ...,smoking ,drinking....are only the freedom,but I think the freedom of the mind and the thoughts ,to express and reveal your opinion especially  when the matter concerns you,it is what the freedom means.


Just living is not enough ..we must have a sunshine in our life ,a hope,a flash of  light ...We must have a bird inside us to make us fly with freedom in our thoughts and minds.It's a chance to be better 

 and to build a progressive society .

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Teaching: Between theory and practice

We "teachers" read and studied alot of books and articles about teaching strategies,but ..Can we apply all those theories in the class??What do you think?

For me, I can say that theories can help but if we know how to apply them correctly and add our own experience and personality.

Teaching is not only about motivating students to learn ,but about helping them how to learn and get the essence of the information.If the teachers have the passion and the the love to their career ,so I think they can convey them to the students.

As you know ,Knowledge is not only in methods and theories ,but it's about bridging the gap between theory and practice .

It's so important to keep the teacher's authority and the respect inside the class ,and at the same time create a relaxed atmosphere to the students...to make them share ideas ,ask questions ....

I think teachers should have first of all self-confidence then,they can use their information and theories to explain the lessons.

 Good teachers practice their job not for money or because they have to, but because they enjoy it and they want to be a teacher.

  Good teachers couldn't imagine doing anything else  !


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I read a research into how people learn languages,shows us that successful learners tend to be highly motivated. It diveds motivation into two types: EXTRINSIC  " outside" and INTRINSIC "inside".

Extrinsic" ouside" motivation is when students want to learn because they might get the chance for a good job or to pass the exam with good grades and please their parents. The motivation to succeed is not within themselves, but is found in an external goal they hope to reach.

Intrinsic " inside" motivation when they want to learn because they like to speak and learn the language, the culture of it.They like to know and discover the language and the people who speak it.


I think both motivations are necessary and getting the students to enjoy learning English is the key here.It's not only the school books that make them learn English ,but I encourage them to read for pleasure ,what their interests,  about: ..football players  ,sports, cars, magazines ,movie stars.....in English and to listen to English songs and news too.

We all know that teaching a language is different from any other subject.We have to make our students motivate and like the language first ,then we start to teach them about it.


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Is " HAMLET " inside everyone?

More studies and interpretations have been written about  " Hamlet " than about any other work of literature..Why..?

I think because some from everyone's nature has been touched in Hamlet.We can all find something of ourselves in this character.The conflict and the mixture of feeling ,it is an exact knowledge of human nature:  misunderstood by others, the hesitation, the lonliness inside ,the imagination ,..love ...hate..

all the feelings concerning people ingeneral .

It's a knowledge of our own psychology and the connection between the world inside and the world outside us ,and how we can translate thoughts into actions.

Shakespeare  had a deep understanding to the hunman nature ,so he dramatized Hamlet as a complicated character that no one completely understands him,but this only makes him more real.


This is one of the things beyond Shakespeare's greatness and the continuous studying of his plays all over the world.We still think about his words:




Can you know the answer??


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I think teachers around the world have things incommon,"universal" :

A love and care for our students,and the desire to help them grow and be healthy, and help their societies to grow up.I think we all share the same viewpoints to strengthen our teaching strategies,some are:

-We have to address thier bad " actions" not thier bad " selves" ,because their actions can change.

-We don't humiliate any student or strive power for power's sake,be patient and remember always  when we are with their age.

- We treat the students fairly and we get energy from thier learning.

-We can learn something new every year to improve ourselves.We can learn from others,borrow,be teachable  .teachers should always learn and teach.

 our career is so important , so we should educate ourselves to educate others.

Best wishes to all the teachers around the world


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