Classroom Management

English Class with Korean 4th Graders (English As a Second Language)

English As a Second Language, or “teaching English”, is many things to many people. It exists on many levels ranging from a travel ticket to a serious career choice. Most people look at it as a way to have an extended stay in a place they’ve always wanted to visit. There’s nothing wrong with this. In fact, I think it’s a valid reason, and many recruiters and schools know this. Some of them will market their positions to cater to this angle.

Others, however, have approached it much differently. They are highly qualified teachers whose plan is to be part of a bigger picture in international schools or specialized private schools. They teach in subject-specific roles. If they do teach English, they need to be English majors with experience often times. Some become department heads, others, principals. These types of roles are not for the majority of “teach English” people out there.


Classroom Criminal Justice: Enforce Behavior, Drop the Ax, But Keep It FUN!

Coming into the ESL field later in life presents a challenge for me. Without time on my side, I know I need to get training whenever it’s available. I took on obtaining ESL-related certifications along the way. Since coming to Korea I got a TESOL certification, a Business English certification, and my teaching license from back home.

In addition, EPIK holds training modules at times, and although they’re not the most in-depth, hands-on training, they’re better than nothing. You can usually walk away having learned something. Over time, a lot of little things add up to a big thing.


Classroom Management: Setting Rules and Expectations for a Smooth Running Year

As a public school ESL instructor in South Korea, I know that my requirements and authority level are limited in comparison to my Korean counterpart, or co-teacher. Still, in my situation where I teach half the classes and my co-teacher the other, I’m still bearing the full weight of what happens during each 40 minute session. That is, I’m not just responsible for covering the material but also maintaining my sanity based on how smoothly the classes run.

Noone is really concerned whether or not your classes are organized and streamlined. The co-teacher cares some, but that’s usually because it has a bearing on how much involvement will be required of them. Other than that, noone from the Department of Education is concerned, no principle or vice-principal is taking note, etc. It’s up to you (and me) to ensure that our classroom management skills are effective and put in place. For our own sake.


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