5 Teaching and Training Myths Busted


Every profession has its own myths and legends and it’s no different when it comes to teaching and training. The internet, news articles and even specialist books are full of different misconceptions about teaching and teachers – their work and what makes them good and successful educators.   It’s time to break free from those myths and to show that they are not true and have never been true in the first place !

Here are the top 5 teaching myths which we have busted:

1.        Anybody can teach

Good and effective teachers and trainers are enthusiastic about the subject they teach and they are able to inculcate this passion into their students.  They have this natural ability to teach and they do their work instinctively In order to teach or train effectively and successfully a person needs to be qualified in their subject and also have an appropriate teaching qualification which depends on the type of education they are in (compulsory, post compulsory, adult education).  You often hear about people who decide to change their careers and move into teaching and training. They are able to get the required qualifications and learn the techniques needed to manage the classroom and teach their students.  However, they won`t be able to succeed if they lack the passion required to be a great teacher because teaching is more than just a profession- it is a real vocation.

2.       PowerPoint is essential in today`s teaching

The fact that we live in the 21st century does not mean that we need to rely blindly on recent technology and shiny gadgets. Yes, it is true that PowerPoint presentation is a very useful teaching method that allows you to teach larger groups of students and appeals to different types of learners- those who prefer to read and watch and those who prefer just to listen.  It can enrich your lessons and make them more colourful. We do not have, however, to give up on our tried and tested methods like chalk and talk, class discussion, group activities or demonstrations.  In modern and inclusive teaching there is plenty of space for different approaches, techniques, materials and resources. You should use those which suit the subject best, the number of students and which you feel familiar with. Remember you do not always need to use PowerPoint, and you won`t be a less effective teacher if you avoid it.

3.       To teach you need English as your first language

Effective communication is a key to every teacher’s success. It is a two way process during which you need to speak clearly to your students, deliver your subject in such a way that everyone can understand, give clear instructions, listen to your students and respond to their enquires. It is important that you use correct English, avoid jargon and technical terms your students are unfamiliar with. If you communicate in a fluent and proficient way you don’t have to be a native speaker of English.

4.       Adults don`t make good learners

The saying “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks” doesn’t apply to humans !   Adults (as with learners of any age) require a lot of teacher attention and support. They might have their own problems like family or work commitments that can delay them from learning or cause some disruption to learning. Most of the time, however, they are motivated to study hard and achieve their goals. They want to learn because they can see how relevant to their life and future career it could be.  Yes, training can be difficult but most of the time adults are really good learners – a pleasure and fun to work with.

5.       Good teachers never need to look at their notes

Good teachers are always very well prepared for their lessons. They have their lesson plans and quite often prepare additional notes which can act as a prompt during lessons. There is nothing wrong in looking at notes. Teachers do not have to learn everything by heart, this is why they use notes. These notes need to be used sparingly as a reminder and guide rather than a text to be read out to the class.

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