During the course of your own studies, you have probably encountered numerous teachers whose teaching styles did not serve you, the student, well or that you simply did not appreciate. Obviously these are not the people who inspired you to teach or who had the most impact on your academic development.
With this in mind, let’s look at some dreadful teacher types that no one wants to become.
5 Types Of ESL Teachers That You Should Avoid Turning Into
The Disciplinarian is very strict and loud. He may lash out with an angry command when frustrated, upset, or disappointed with students. Talking out of turn and being late are completely unacceptable in his classroom even if there might be a reasonable excuse. Nothing is ever his fault even when students are unclear on directions and he is reluctant to repeat himself. Students tend to be afraid of The Disciplinarian and therefore are less likely to speak up in class. He all but shatters their confidence even when covering basic material that students are familiar with. In his classes students have to pay attention and avoid attracting attention.
The Friend is easygoing and lenient. His lesson plans are designed to be fun and active so that students can enjoy the learning process. He tries to relate to students and sometimes even succeeds. He will never challenge students to step outside their comfort zones or embarrass them by asking them to repeat, develop, or change their answers. Students really enjoy having The Friend as their teacher but are often less productive than their peers due to lack of discipline and focus. Students are not driven to work hard because they meet endless praise in the classroom regardless of performance.
The Shy Guy
The Shy Guy (or Gal) is too timid to be put in front of a classroom. He often speaks so softly that students sitting in the back of the room must ask for things to be repeated. This teacher lacks the self confidence to assert his authority and therefore students are unwilling to give him the respect a teacher deserves and disregard instructions. This teacher lacks even the most basic classroom management skills and cannot keep students in check. The Shy Guy leaves class each day feeling defeated and students prey on his weakness by further insulting him. Even generally well behaved students will act poorly in this teacher’s classroom because there is no real consequence for their actions.
The Lecturer believes that if he repeats something enough times, students will understand what they are being told. Rather than rephrase or test comprehension, the teacher requires that students just repeat exactly what he said. If this teacher is a non-native English speaker, it is likely that he will lecture almost exclusively in his native language. When students struggle with material, The Lecturer will start speaking more loudly as if this will somehow help the situation. ESL students with this type of instructor will suffer from lack of speaking practice and will often not comprehend the meaning behind their words.
The Timewaster likes to dominate speaking time and regularly holds one-sided discussions about topics completely unrelated to the lesson. He will half-heartedly attempt to engage students in material that is neither relevant nor interesting to them and upon failing will simply continue along the same path. As classes with The Timewaster often end without getting to the main point of the lesson, students will feel as if they are not gaining anything by attending classes and become frustrated with how their time is being spent. Particularly driven individuals will do well through self study while the rest of the class will be sorely deprived of the education they need.
Having thought about these five dreadful teacher types, please do your best to avoid becoming one of them. Teachers who are understanding, respectable, and assertive that include a variety of activities in their lessons and maximize student talking time will set high but reasonable expectations for their students.
Students will then meet those goals through the continued support and encouragement they are given every day by their teacher. Good teachers learn something from every class and grow throughout the course of their careers always striving to be a better instructor.
See more on ESL teacher types in our other article, ‘8 Most Typical ESL Characters You're Probably Sharing Your Teacher's Room With’.