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Englishman seeking advice on teaching, but no qualification

colinoscapee :

It's very important when it's an actual communication course, which requires a speaking and listening component. The teachers who do this course must be able to teach in English, they can't just write everything on the board. The engineers who do this course must be able to speak as they will converse with native speakers in their jobs.Knowing only the grammatical part of English won't save you when someone yells"look out".

If it's just a normal language centre program then that's a different story, I was referring to communication courses that are held.

@colinoscapee

Thanks for clarifying. You are absolutely correct. We were discussing entirely different training situations. Thankfully, Vietnam never got as deep into the situation as some other countries.

Fred :

Any good teacher thinks well past the text book, such as selling the footage of the grannie going up in a ball of flames.

Texts books don't always tell kids everything they need.

I can email you some pics of traumatic amputation.........

I was talking to a neighbour this morning who told me that he has a good job in Saigon with a Belgian company but when he gets emails from his boss in English, he has to decode them with the aid of a thesaurus.

When I asked him which software his computer uses he told me: Microsoft. So I asked him why he didn't use the thesaurus that comes with MS.

He looked blankly at me and said - I'm not good with computers. Looks like I'll be round his place tomorrow for a quick lesson on paper reduction procedures.

colinoscapee :
70 years old :
colinoscapee :

I have found here in Viet Nam you must find the class grammar monster,and put him/her to sleep before the class gets too far down the track.

I definitely have sympathy for your position. But, understanding the "grammar monster's" situation generates sympathy for "grammar monsters" as well.

Socrates developed the Socratic method of teaching over two thousand years ago. I suspect that few teachers would dispute the fact that the "Socratic method of teaching" is by far the best method of teaching ever developed. The reason that the "Socratic method of teaching" is not more widely used is that it is horribly expensive. Having the equivalent of a full time PhD tutor to teach each and every student, just is not possible.

In Academia, the closest approximation; I've seen, short of Doctorate level, is a graduate seminar, where up to a dozen graduate students sit around a table with their instructor and discuss the subject is about as close to the "Socrates developed the Socratic method of teaching" as it gets. Note, I never studied at a Doctorate level and never graduated at the Master's level and that was 40 years ago. So, please correct me if I have made a mistake with this statement.

One place the "Socratic method of teaching" is still very popular is in the Military. One of my jobs, as a Junior NCO was teaching Soldiers that were surplus, to the jobs in their current field how to operate the M-1 tank so that they could change jobs and stay in the Army. As a Senior NCO, eodmatt has had vastly more experience in the "Socratic method of teaching" than I have, whether or not he is familiar with the term. One of an NCO's primary jobs is to teach lower ranking Soldiers using something very much like the "Socratic method."

The issue is that for most people is that their is a dichotomy between learning the subject and passing the tests, especially in Asia. In order to be successful, it is more important to pass the English language tests and get the certificate, than it is to be able to speak English. That was the point of Professor Phap hiring me for my because of my "bad" English. He had a number of students that were going to do superbly well in the tests. But, he wanted them to be able to speak English as well.

http://english.vietnamnet.vn/fms/educat … stion.html

is a good link to follow.

I know that it doesn't seem right. But, the "grammar monster" likely has their has their priorities straight. First pass the test, get the Certificate, then maybe learn the subject.

Also note, it has been over 40 years since I passed my "Testing and Methodology course." A quick google didn't find that subject listed.

The problem being is that many know the grammatical side of English, but can't speak. The grammar monster can pass a reading or writing test, but will fail miserably when it comes down to the communication part, which is what they are there to learn. Communication is not about focusing on grammar, they learn grammar from their VN teachers, who also can't communicate properly in English because they also have  focused on the grammar.

Spot on too! When people bring their kids along (normally on a Sunday when they just happen by and just happen to have the child with them), they always bring an exercise book with them and I always end up arguing with the parent(s) that what the kid actually needs is not more of "Billy and Mary going to the zoo", its more of putting what he or she has learned into a conversation. And thats the real value of having a tame native English speaker available. But by the cringe it's difficult getting that through to them.

I have stopped doing it now though. When they turn up I say "Oh, shame you weren't here half an hour ago but now its time for my shower / ear wax removal / nasal hair cut / toe nail trim", whatever.

Johnny JP Walker :

Hi
Johnny here. I have been asked repeatedly to teach English in Sai Gon , Vung Tau and other centres .
I have ne degrees..in fact I did not even graduate High School...I have been transparent about my lack of certificates/diplomas/Esl TOEFL Etc. Etc. Etc.
Bottom line is they don't care about a piece of paper..it means, only, a piece of paper..
They tell me  "We understand you"... Voila...that is what they want most from a teacher..clear and precise diction, which is very hard to come by in Viet Nam...English is my mother/father tongue and I have great difficulty understanding teachers from several countries who I know are speaking English...but it is unintelligible...and that includes Australia, New Zealand, and Great Britain.
I teach private lessons, teach in private Language centres  and also teach in schools. I iterate: as long as they can understand you when you speak..they want you..You don't need a piece of paper which offers no assurance that you can teach..it only offers proof of memorizing text for passing tests/exams.
And BTW I am well past the so-called age parameters we always see online.
I am 68 years old and in demand.

Congratulations. Finding students that are interested in learning rather than slips of paper is a treasure. Enjoy it.

A reminder, my remarks about Certificates were were aimed at explaining that the "grammar monsters" have genuinely different needs than other students. I should have put that fact in all of the subsequent posts.

Also note, Your honesty about your skills and abilities has been properly rewarded.

I think I've met some of your students Johnny JP Walker they keep saying 'eh' at the end of each sentence  :)

Why would you "teach" something that you are not qualified to do? You know the Vietnamese spend their hard earned money so their children, or themselves, can learn English. You teaching would be nothing more than a scam, IMO.

Adhome01 :

Why would you "teach" something that you are not qualified to do? You know the Vietnamese spend their hard earned money so their children, or themselves, can learn English. You teaching would be nothing more than a scam, IMO.

Should fit in nicely with the scheme of things in Vietnam as a whole, what?  :whistle:

Adhome01 :

Why would you "teach" something that you are not qualified to do? You know the Vietnamese spend their hard earned money so their children, or themselves, can learn English. You teaching would be nothing more than a scam, IMO.

It is only a "scam" if the students fail to learn or improve their English under his instruction. Note, I agree and support improving ones ability to teach.

But, I received 12 semester hours of Basic Vietnamese credit by examination that transferred to the U of Maryland and started the U of Maryland Vietnamese program at the Intermediate level in 1974, U of Maryland Far East Division Saigon Campus https://www.asia.umuc.edu/ . The instruction was by a then 18 year old girl(then our Unit Doctors helper 1970-1971) who dropped out of school in the 3rd grade and later became and still is my wife.

In teaching a language, credentials and training help. Results are what counts.

Read in the news a UXO expert was killed in Vietnam recently, hope you are OK
EODMatt.

Zep

Maybe it's not EODMatt I am thinking about...Someone here was a UXO expert...

Zep--

Zepo :

Read in the news a UXO expert was killed in Vietnam recently, hope you are OK
EODMatt.

Zep

Still here (counts fingers and toes), yep. Thanks for the kind  thoughts!

There was a couple of Vietnamese UXO clearance guys rolled a seven the other day too.

One of the most common questions people ask me is: "But surely these things aren't dangerous after all these years?" Usually said by project managers who don't want to pay for a risk assessment, or any form of investigation.

Anyway, my thoughts are always with the teams I have worked with in the Solomon Island, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, Afghastlystan, Iraq, Iran and elsewhere - especially Iran where the phrase "It's Gods will" is always the first thing they say after taking a hit.

Bless them all.

eodmatt :
Zepo :

Read in the news a UXO expert was killed in Vietnam recently, hope you are OK
EODMatt.

Zep

Still here (counts fingers and toes), yep. Thanks for the kind  thoughts!

There was a couple of Vietnamese UXO clearance guys rolled a seven the other day too.

One of the most common questions people ask me is: "But surely these things aren't dangerous after all these years?" Usually said by project managers who don't want to pay for a risk assessment, or any form of investigation.

Anyway, my thoughts are always with the teams I have worked with in the Solomon Island, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, Afghastlystan, Iraq, Iran and elsewhere - especially Iran where the phrase "It's Gods will" is always the first thing they say after taking a hit.

Bless them all.

These so called Gods have a nasty way of dealing with their followers, I'm glad I'm an atheist.

Hand Salute

SSG retired

Zepo :

Maybe it's not EODMatt I am thinking about...Someone here was a UXO expert...

Zep--

Well, I am supposed to be an EOD "expert", although I prefer the term "specialist", and I am still very much alive.

Good article about the recent death of EOD specialist Ngo Thien Khiet.

http://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk … ing-people

70 years old :

Good article about the recent death of EOD specialist Ngo Thien Khiet.

http://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk … ing-people

RIP Brother NGO!

Hope they look after his family.

eodmatt :
70 years old :

Good article about the recent death of EOD specialist Ngo Thien Khiet.

http://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk … ing-people

RIP Brother NGO!

Hope they look after his family.

Ong Khiet was working for an Non Government Organization. Hopefully, his family will be well taken care of.

I was talking to the Australian CSM that you directed me to and was surprised at how the spouses were treated in Australia. They apparently don't even get a Military ID Card, Military Health Care or  Military Pension after the retired service member dies.

I kind of expect that from a lower middle class income country like Viet Nam. . .

This thread seems to have taken on another life.

My friend started to teach and play with children in the orphanage as doing volunteer in Ba Vi, Ha Noi. Then when she has got experience, she applied for an English teacher in the primary shcol in Hanoi and now she still does volunteer on weekends. If you want to be an experienced teacher, you first need to love it and devote time for it.

Get a qualification. It doesn't take long, and while you are studying you will get some experience teaching = and find out if you actually like it.
If you are qualified you stand more chance of work and reasonable pay; without this why should anyone employ you?

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