Thursday, February 27, 2014

I used video in Reflective practice, following on from TESOL Mentorevo

After the excellent webinars and discussions in Mentorevo, I started thinking about reflective practice. How did I get to that? Probably by the stepping stone  method. First stepping stone, mentoring topics got me thinking about specific points I'd like to mentor with somebody. One of those points was how the parts of my lessons fit together and follow on each other, and how I handle the "turning point" when a decision must be made what to do next in the lesson.

As I  was musing on these things, a workshop came up at my school, topic: video. Another stepping stone! During the workshop we discussed the value of recording yourself while teaching. I made a video of myself the very next day, and what a revelation! I give fairly good instructions, but I saw myself smiling at things that weren't humorous or positive, like when my student said she hadn't done her homework. I smile, and smile.

Next stepping stone: for a week of lesson plans, I wrote in red ink at the top of each one "fit face to context". As I near the end of the week, I find not only is my expression more natural and appropriate, I am generally more aware of exaggerated laughs, gestures, and so on.

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