Day 3 of TEFL started early for me, up an out before 8am to catch the train (I leave earlier than I need to after the missing the train incident!) and a nice steady walk to the station. Florence, I feel, is nicer when it’s not as busy. Early in the morning before the masses of tourists and day visitors enter the city.
I grabbed a coffee (cappuccino is acceptable in the morning here but after that it’s strictly espresso so I am told) for the train ride near the station and enjoyed the journey. There is some lovely scenery but unfortunately it was overcast today so the pictures I took (see below) aren’t that amazing plus there are regular tunnels and I seemed to keep timing it wrong...
My phone decided to let me know that I had done 30 minutes exercise before it was even 9am, honestly I think it feels it has a new owner. Who is this person who is walking everywhere!? There was another walk to the school then it was on to TEFL!
Today was nearly all about lesson planning but the day began with Bianca, our tutor, going through a demo of a lesson focussed on The Killer Burger. It would take me a while to explain the topic but the aim of the lesson was to teach vocabulary and language skills relating to food and healthy/unhealthy eating using different teaching methods and materials. It was interesting to see how Bianca made her way through the lesson plan and how she used her skills to teach the lesson. We picked up some really good practice I think.
We spent time talking about ways that we can elicit responses from the learners which will be helpful for lessons of our own. There are so many ways to teach someone one word and what it means in English.
We were shown where the books that we could use are and after a nice lunch at a local eatery (see Bianca, I’m using a word you got out of us today!) we went straight into brainstorming and thinking of ideas for our very first real lessons tomorrow. The books were useful to get us thinking but because we had seem some great demos and had some good paper resources we were able to come with some creative things on our own. I won’t tell you about the lesson content now because I want to see how I actually do tomorrow first! Parts of the day got me excited, others made me a little nervous like when we talked about challenging situations and making sure the content is right etc.
The day was rounded off by learning about teaching beginners, as in absolute beginners, and how we can support them to understand and learn even if they have zero knowledge on the English language. We did a great exercise where we picked random words out and had to role play a teacher trying to teach the word to beginners. This was useful practice but also fun which is important in teaching.
At the end of the day I wandered back to the station and got back into Florence at about 7.15pm – a pretty long day and all in all I had walked nearly 5 miles according to my phone. My feet hate me right now. I had a thought that I may actually lose a bit of weight here if it wasn’t for the fact I stuffed myself with cold meats, cheese and bread when I got home – all washed down with some wine!
After refuelling I spent time tonight going over my lesson plan and what I need to do to complete it tomorrow. There's a lot to do but I feel ok, I'm very apprehensive of course but this is what I came here to do and I am looking forward to doing it!
I also had a moment of homesickness when my sister sent me a photo of my gorgeous nephew but I can't think about it too much or I will cry I think as I am so tired. The lovely pic is below.
It’s going to be a nerve wracking day tomorrow, but also a good day I think.
I’ll let you know how I get on!