Poll about Teaching English in English - what's your opinion?

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Korean teachers are most likely to object to a full TEE (Teaching English in English) approach in their classrooms on account of the problems this will cause with...

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Total Votes : 29

Poll about Teaching English in English - what's your opinion?

Post  Jason Renshaw on Sun May 18 2008, 16:16

Hi class,

I'm currently preparing a lot of materials for my TEE (Teaching English in English) session at the Longman national Young Learners and Teenagers conference to take place on June 15th.

One of the areas I'm investigating is why Korean secondary school teachers may object to or have serious problems with TEE.

You students could really help me by indicating what you think. I've prepared a quick poll listing some of the main problems I have heard (and seen) from Korean English teachers when it comes to conducting their classes all in English.

From this list, could you please select what you think is the most important issue/problem. Of course, you may see several or them as very important, but for now I'm most interested in the one key problem or issue you think is the most important reason for TEE being difficult or impractical in the Korean secondary school English classroom.

Just click on the one issue you feel is the most important. Voting is anonymous, and all you have to do is click.

I'm very keen to get your perspective. If you want to add to the basic poll by giving comments or explanations (or even asking questions), please just add your post to this thread.

Thanks and I'm looking forward to seeing the results!

Best wishes,

~ Jason

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Re: Poll about Teaching English in English - what's your opinion?

Post  Bae Sung-han on Mon May 19 2008, 12:23

Unlike other subjects in Korean educational system, in my case I am sure of it then, probably more than 60 percent of English teachers are not ready for this. The resson is that firstly they don't have confidence in their own ability about speaking, listening and writing, which is the active performace. As you imagine, most of the Korean students at least 10 years ago - the number of year might be shorter than I think - were taughte in only reading part including English Grammar, so they are possibly afraid of using it in the class.
Secondly, why the English teachers don't want to use it is that they are just focusing on it as a literal perspective, not as a realistic and communicative methods in our so-common societies. It is easy to say that English language is the international one, but their using it between in a real life and in the class is vastly different.
Thus, I suppose that most of English teachers don't want to use it in the class wholely. I think you need to prepare for it before it is late.
Every English teacher is feeling that the importance. flower
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Re: Poll about Teaching English in English - what's your opinion?

Post  kim young-ah on Mon May 19 2008, 21:39

In explaining the difficult grammar in English, most students may have hard time in understanding the contents of the grammar. The grammar itself is difficult. To explain it and make the students understand is much more diffcult. Someday, the day to communicate freely in English will come....
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in my opinion

Post  Yoobin Cha on Tue May 20 2008, 10:26

I know that many Universities have tried to lecture in English to keep pace with globalization. Especially, Top 5 Universities in Korea try to lecture most of major in English.
However, many students complaint about this as it is hard to understand concepts of majors and Korean Professor are fluently speaking in their limited major. Professors also have difficulties in English so they can not explain various cases concerned in concepts.
I think that lecturing in Korean is sometimes helpful in a few majors like Law, Mathmematics
etc. Korean teachers are not ready to teach in English. We need more time to prepare it and foreign teachers.
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Re: Poll about Teaching English in English - what's your opinion?

Post  Kim Hyunjin on Tue May 20 2008, 11:23

It looks hard to teaching subjects in English because of students' comprehention and understanding, teachers' readness, etc.
However, the chance might be gone if we hasitate and just wait for perfect time due to those reasons. Although it might be impossible to lecture all kind of subjects in English like an immersion program, it is feasible to teach English in Egnlish, I think. Of course, there are many difficulties in ETE, but that is natural phenomena in case whenever we start something new. In addition to that, this is the best time for me to improve my English in order to prepare the Eglish class!
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Re: Poll about Teaching English in English - what's your opinion?

Post  Ji-eun on Tue May 20 2008, 20:03

In my opinion, teaching English in English has many good points and some bad points, too. In my English kindergarten, all of classes are doing only English. Even 5 years old students, who don't know alphabet at all, they just listen to the teacher and have classes in English. Of course, at first time, they can't understand at all and they just speak Korean in the classroom, but time goes by, they just fall into ENGLISH and English situation and feel free using and listening English. It means, they are getting better to understand and speak English gradually in the ESL situation. I surprised so many times with children. Of course they have a really great strong point which they are young, but i think TEE can offer kinds of ESL situation to the students and it is clearly helpful for students to study English as i think. ^^

But one bad(?) point is time and comprehention. Sometimes, i have to use long time to explain only one word in English. Whenever they don't understand at all what i am talking or explaining now, i feel heavy in my chest and worry about how i can explain easier for them. If i speak Korean, they can understand with only 10 seconds and they may learn more things with that time. Especially for teaching grammar, i think TEE may make a barrier let students understand.

Anyway, in thesedays, TEE is clearly one of hot potato in this field. I hope you will have a wonderful study! ^-^
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Re: Poll about Teaching English in English - what's your opinion?

Post  Liz on Wed May 21 2008, 04:19

It sounds like a textbook,, but for the Ss in EFL envirionment,I think it's very important to give them as much exposure as possible. One of the good way will be TEE. However, there are lots of reasons that it may not succeed. In my opinion, I think one of the major reasons is mixed level students. If they are seperated into a few levels, it will be more effective. Korean English teachers can speak both Korean and English and I think it can be a benefit. For some part like grammar, culture, vocabulary, etc. it's better to teach them in Korean. So fifty fifty TEE seems ideal!
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TEE

Post  Mijin Son on Wed May 21 2008, 05:59

Yes, it is a really big issue in Korean English Education.
With some aspects I agree with the notion of TEE.
But in my opinion is that before starting a new policy there must be some preperation.
One of the biggest reasons why some of the teachers do not agree with TEE, i think, comes from the evaluation system. The teachers should evaluate students improvement but the real problem is that students are evaluated on the base of norm-referenced test. If the teachers can evaluate students improvement using criterion-referenced test, then our curriculumm can be changed. However, to make matters worse, students' grades are directly related to the university enterance, it is absolutely not easy to change the assessment system in school.
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Re: Poll about Teaching English in English - what's your opinion?

Post  billy on Wed May 21 2008, 06:23

It seems that every issue you posted was closely realted to the inability to implement the TEE in Korea in the foreseeable future. It was hard for me to select one of them. Every opinion followed by our graduate students were also worth considering. How can we approach this issue? Every time i think of this issue, i am lost. We often say the students vary, so we need to approach them differently. In terms of English education here in Korea, the situation gets worse when we look upon the economic standing of their parents. Nowadays i often hear from one of my colleages here in TFLHS that he pays close to 700,000 won to a private English institute, aks 'Hakwon', for the tuition of his son. I was shocked. This is not a turtoring fee. The English class his son takes comprises around 15 - 20 students. It's really highway robbery, i thought to myself. Or do they really teach something magic that enables students to excel in their school? I feel ashamed and burdened as an English teacher in the public school. Please let's help each other to get through this turbulent ocean of TEE. I am still confused...
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I agree with you.

Post  Joo Un-jin on Wed May 21 2008, 20:36

I agree to your opinion that as time goes by, students get more familiar with English.
Although they have difficulty in understanding English at first, they come to know about what the teacher is speaking. As they are exposed to English a lot, their ability improves, I think.
I tried to speak in English at first in my class. I spoke English when I tell them directives at March. But students couldn't understand it and complained a lot. I gave up. They defeated me.
i think that if I had continued to speak in English in spite of their complaint, their listening ability would have improved. At least they could have been more familiar with English or less fearful for English. If they had been more familiar with English, they would have complained less and finally they would have not complained.
I regret not doing that now. Next year, I'll try again. Very Happy

Ji-eun wrote:In my opinion, teaching English in English has many good points and some bad points, too. In my English kindergarten, all of classes are doing only English. Even 5 years old students, who don't know alphabet at all, they just listen to the teacher and have classes in English. Of course, at first time, they can't understand at all and they just speak Korean in the classroom, but time goes by, they just fall into ENGLISH and English situation and feel free using and listening English. It means, they are getting better to understand and speak English gradually in the ESL situation. I surprised so many times with children. Of course they have a really great strong point which they are young, but i think TEE can offer kinds of ESL situation to the students and it is clearly helpful for students to study English as i think. ^^

But one bad(?) point is time and comprehention. Sometimes, i have to use long time to explain only one word in English. Whenever they don't understand at all what i am talking or explaining now, i feel heavy in my chest and worry about how i can explain easier for them. If i speak Korean, they can understand with only 10 seconds and they may learn more things with that time. Especially for teaching grammar, i think TEE may make a barrier let students understand.

Anyway, in thesedays, TEE is clearly one of hot potato in this field. I hope you will have a wonderful study! ^-^
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Re: Poll about Teaching English in English - what's your opinion?

Post  Kang Eunmi on Wed May 21 2008, 21:24

Jason Renshaw wrote:Hi class,

I'm currently preparing a lot of materials for my TEE (Teaching English in English) session at the Longman national Young Learners and Teenagers conference to take place on June 15th.

One of the areas I'm investigating is why Korean secondary school teachers may object to or have serious problems with TEE.

You students could really help me by indicating what you think. I've prepared a quick poll listing some of the main problems I have heard (and seen) from Korean English teachers when it comes to conducting their classes all in English.

From this list, could you please select what you think is the most important issue/problem. Of course, you may see several or them as very important, but for now I'm most interested in the one key problem or issue you think is the most important reason for TEE being difficult or impractical in the Korean secondary school English classroom.

Just click on the one issue you feel is the most important. Voting is anonymous, and all you have to do is click.

I'm very keen to get your perspective. If you want to add to the basic poll by giving comments or explanations (or even asking questions), please just add your post to this thread.

Thanks and I'm looking forward to seeing the results!

Best wishes,

~ Jason

We need to look back on our English educational system. It's time to change our old-fashioned style of english lecture.

There are so many teachers who are willing to teach with and are qualified to TEE.

So far, we've learned how to get bored easily in learning English not how to enjoy learning English.

Even though Many teachers object to TEE, still many people can see the bright future through it!
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Re: Poll about Teaching English in English - what's your opinion?

Post  Jason Renshaw on Wed May 21 2008, 21:33

What amazing people you all are...

I read this sort of honest, thoughtful soul-sharing on a very critical issue in your profession and I think:

There's hope.



sunny Jason


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Re: Poll about Teaching English in English - what's your opinion?

Post  Mi Jin Jeong on Thu May 22 2008, 11:07

I am not against TEE, but I guess it's a little hurry to start TEE right now. I wonder Korean students are ready to understand the class in English and doubt teachers can provide valuable lectures to their students. Both of them need some preparatory time to do that more successfully.
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Re: Poll about Teaching English in English - what's your opinion?

Post  Kim Boyeun on Thu May 22 2008, 11:27

It is often said that teaching English in English has more advantageous in Korean. Some poeple might agree with this statement because by learning in English students can boaden their globla mind and become a person who good at speaking Englislh. However, I strongly believe that lerning in only english has more drawbacks than in on my mother language.

To begin with stuendts who study onlyl in Englsh are easily likely to be distracted. It is obvious that comprehension and understanding is most important thinhs in stydying. However, if beginner students are taught by only English, they can't concentrate on styding, and even student might give up studying foreign language.
Secondly, to teach only in English, teacher have to take too much responsiblity. As people expected, teching only in English make techers too exhuased, so they may take away time to research and studying for class.

In brief , the pro less surpasses cons. It means that leaning in only Englsh is less beneficial, so we need more consideration over TEE.
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I agree with TEE approach but we need to consider it more carefully.

Post  Jung Yoojin on Thu May 22 2008, 12:22

I agree with the issue on Teaching English in English as newly established government tries to implement on the classroom in early age. I am not a current English teacher at this moment, but I think TEE class would help students to enhance their communicative proficiency a lot which the current english curriculum emphasizes. I had experienced a class sort of immersion program which was teaching French in French in English spoken country. Those students are around 15-16 years old. But their speaking and listening abilities were fantastic even though their vocabulary and grammar proficiecy was not that good. I saw they were really enjoyed their class. But what would like to add more about this. This case was they were used to learn in those circumstances from the early age, and that means they can understand what the teacher says. I worry about if we implement teaching English in English in public school, how many students can understand what the teacher say? That should give rise to the increase of private cram school numbers. Students will start to go to private cram school to learn listeing and speaking skill to understand English at their own classroom! That is why I choose students' understaning. And I also wanted to choose the 'handoing with mixed ability classes' I think there are lots of students who have studied in abroad. Their English conversation skill are almost perfect. So teachers need to care about students' proper levels on their classrooms. Before implementing the TEE class, I think we need to talk about this with current English teachers and find some appropriate solutions ~


Last edited by Jung Yoojin on Thu May 22 2008, 21:07; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Poll about Teaching English in English - what's your opinion?

Post  choi Eun sil on Thu May 22 2008, 12:26

It's impossible to teach English in only English. In korea, there are a lot of students in one class. The level of students is also various. So, some students have difficulty understanding the class,especially grammar. I think the English education in Korea have to be divided into several parts. Native teachers are charge of speakind, culture or writing. Korean English teacher are responsible for grammar, listening or reading.
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Re: Poll about Teaching English in English - what's your opinion?

Post  Jason Renshaw on Mon May 26 2008, 08:11

Hello dear students,

I found the comments posted in this thread very interesting and perfect for highlighting the variety of opinions surrounding this issue.

I would like to include several of the comments in my introduction for the TEE presentation I am doing at the Longman international conference in Seoul on June 14. I don't intend to include any names - just extracts of the actual comments.

If you have posted a comment here, do you object to me quoting you in anonymous fashion? I hope not, as I will be proud to share your thoughts when addressing a national gathering of teachers about the issue of TEE...

Please let me know if you have any objections.

Thanks,

~ Jason

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Re: Poll about Teaching English in English - what's your opinion?

Post  bakbann on Wed May 28 2008, 12:20

I personally am a firm believer in TEE. I am sure no body can deny the effectiveness of TEE. Let me start with my personal experience of learning Japanese. I took Japanese class at college as a very beginner with native speaker. Some people worried that it might be too difficult to understand classes. However the teacher tried to speak slowly and carefully chose words. Although there were some vocabularies I couldn't understand, there was no problem at all to communicate or follow the class. It truly improved my Japanese a lot in short time. Moreover, I didn't have any inhibition or self-defense around my language ego. I felt comfortable listening and speaking in Japanese even as I was a complete novice.

However, TEE is bringing up fierce controversy. Why? It needs a lot of steps to take as a preparation before introducing it to Korean classroom. Among these many reasons above, I would pick "Handling mixed ability classes" as the biggest obstacles in the way of TEE. There are roughly 40 students in one class and their English proficiency varies. At which level should the class be designed? I am sure students can understand the class if they are at similar level and teacher teach them at their level wisely and appropriately. In TEE grammar is not a problem. Grammar can be taught in English in context and communication without using grammatical terms. However, there are other problems than students' varied ability to solve for TEE. First, the authority needs to train teachers in different ways. From college, I think that all the courses for future teachers should be conducted in English. (I wrote this on twisty turny story as well) Moreover, the authority should provide various training programs and support in studying English for current teachers. Second, formal tests should be changed something more suitable for different curriculum with TEE. Lastly, teachers should have more autonomy on their syllabus.

As I am not a teacher yet, I not only have no right to vote here, but also have little knowledge about actual classroom situation. Therefore, my opinions may sound like too ideal or naive. However, I am sure that my points will help Korean education better prepared for TEE.
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How can I make a difference??

Post  Ji Young, Kim on Thu May 29 2008, 10:42

I just cast my vote in the poll. (I just hope I'm not the last person.)

To tell the truth, TEE sounds too ideal to me cosidering the students and their English abilities I'm teaching now at my school.

In our school we group students into three levels based on their English proficiency, and currently I'm teaching only the basic level students. (That means I'm really having a tough time these days.)

When students just don't seem to understand the most simple, easiest English sentences in the textbook, how can I help them understand using other English words?? There are times I try to speak in English, using very easy words, but many students don't seem to try to listen to me, which makes me really frustrated.

When students attain a certain level of English proficiency, it might be possible or desirable to teach English through English, but TEE cannot be the magic carpet ride to the mastery of English when students are not motivated to learn.

I'm also one of many people who want a big change in Korean English Education, but sometimes I just don't know how I can make a difference myself.
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Re: Poll about Teaching English in English - what's your opinion?

Post  Jason Renshaw on Fri Jun 06 2008, 18:44

Joo Un-jin wrote:I agree to your opinion that as time goes by, students get more familiar with English.
Although they have difficulty in understanding English at first, they come to know about what the teacher is speaking. As they are exposed to English a lot, their ability improves, I think.
I tried to speak in English at first in my class. I spoke English when I tell them directives at March. But students couldn't understand it and complained a lot. I gave up. They defeated me.
i think that if I had continued to speak in English in spite of their complaint, their listening ability would have improved. At least they could have been more familiar with English or less fearful for English. If they had been more familiar with English, they would have complained less and finally they would have not complained.
I regret not doing that now. Next year, I'll try again. Very Happy

I just noticed something wonderful about this post from Un-jin... Look how wonderfully she uses the 3rd conditional (highlighted in blue) to express regret! I mentioned when I showed you students this construction that I very rarely hear Koreans using it in their own production. Well, I am very happy to say that here it is used perfectly, and in the perfect situation/context!

Well done, Un-jin!

~ Jason

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