My Teaching Philosophy

“Keep going! You can make it!” I still remember what an outward bound instructor said to me in the heavy rain. Soaked and tired, I climbed up the slippery rocks step by step and eventually made it to the top of the wall!

Climbing up slippery rocks is challenging and so are learning English and growing up. One may feel exhausted or may even fall. As a teacher, I am to give my students courage. I hadn’t realized I can do so before I met a F.2 girl during my first placement. I taught her for 3 weeks: in the 1st week, she hardly spoke any English in class. In the second week, she would respond when I asked her questions. In the third week, to my amazement, she took initiatives to talk in class. I did not do anything magic but the encouragement I gave her did! Also unforgettable is the moment when my tutee told me that he finally passed his English exam after having class with me for a year. My teaching contributed to a small extent to his results but what counted the most, I believe, was again my encouragement. Only with teachers’ encouragement can students climb step by step towards the top of their walls.

With strength and power, students also need skills to climb the rocks. As a teacher, I believe every student is an explorer. What I need to do is to give them a map, a compass and any other tools that they need. In my last placement, I asked my students compete to find the meanings of the new vocabulary items in a unit and had them write them on the board with graphical illustrations, turning a potentially tedious vocabulary lesson into an engaging one. I also ask the students in my English class to exchange their writing and I just gave them some guidelines for things they had to pay attention to. As a result, they can learn from each other, which I believe is more effective than learning from their teacher. With the teacher’s guidance, every student is a great explorer and the teacher of each other (including their teacher).

Graduating from my 4-year education programme and proving my ability to be a teacher, I am climbing towards the top of the wall in the process of which I have gained much encouragement from people around me and enjoyed God’s love and guidance. As a teacher, I am to give my students courage and to love them with God’s love. As the instructor in my outward bound programme, I will shout in an encouraging and assuring voice, “Keep going! You can make it!” Despite the discouraging rain in the learning of English and in their lives, I believe all students will be able to make it to the top of their walls at the end of the day and wave to their parents and teachers with triumphant smiles.