It’s round two of the Dogme-versus-Coursebook Teach-Off, and today, my General English DOS, Varinder, starts teaching the same group I had for the last two weeks using the coursebook Global.
Varinder kindly volunteered to tell us a little bit about herself before embarking on posts about her coursebook-based lessons.
So, here’s introducing Varinder Unlu:
Thought I had better introduce myself to everyone. I work at IH London and I am the one who very foolishly challenged Chia to a Dogme v coursebook teach-off. Just a little background information about me:
I’ve been in the world of EFL for about 20 years and started teaching in Turkey. After five years of teaching there, I returned to the UK and began working in a private language school in Greenwich where I spent twelve years, eight of which were as a DOS and Trinity teacher trainer. I’d always had an interest in ESOL and wondered how it was different to EFL teaching and so in 2009 I thought I’d try my hand at ESOL and got a job at Greenwich Community College. It was a really developmental time for me and I thoroughly enjoyed it every minute of it. I learned that, yes, ESOL teaching is different in many ways but there are also many similarities to EFL. Just as I was settling into the world of public sector teaching and environment, the private sector enticed me back with the role of DOS at IH – an opportunity that could not be overlooked and I’ve now been working here for just over eighteen months. It’s an amazing place to work and I’m surrounded by so many talented and creative people with a real passion for teaching and developing. Oh, and I’m also an examiner for Cambridge ESOL, ESB and an inspector.
Dogme is something that raised my interest as an approach because I’ve never really followed one method or approach in my teaching. I’m curious as to why some people feel so strongly about using it exclusively in their teaching. So I hope some of the following questions will be answered for me:
Is it the best way to teach?
Does it work better than course books and materials for teachers? What about newly qualified teachers?
What do students think? Do they/can they see the difference?
Are the learning outcomes increased by using this approach?
Is it good to use just one method/approach in teaching?
Does it matter which approach you use?
Of course there are many more questions in my mind and there are many factors involved in why the results/answers will be what they are. However, I am really excited and a little nervous to be teaching with Chia.