Out of the Doldrums

When children come to us to learn the languages that we teach them, they come to us in trust.

But we do not always honor that trust. We do that unintentionally of course – but the result is the same. Why is this?

It is because of the way we think about curriculum. We think that testing and the textbook are more important than the children. We don’t bother to learn how to properly align our instruction with the research. Some of us still teach our language like they did 50 years ago.

Teachers in other subjects align their instruction with the standards and latest research, in their fields, but in language teaching the great majority of us don’t. We teach in the same way that we as students were taught when we were in school.

That means that we were good at grammar, but it’s all changed up on us now. That has put many of us in a tight spot.

It’s not our fault. But even if we can’t be faulted for our ignorance, our profession must change. The pressure is on to stop giving stupid assignments and heavy testing and instruction that shames most of the children while honoring only the few.

It’s time now to get our profession out of the doldrums.




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