Sources of Teacher Beliefs

Yesterday I was reading  experiences of other language teachers . I noticed the book called Reflective Practice written by Thomas C. Farrel.  There was a passage about sources of teacher beliefs in the book.  You may wonder where teachers’ beliefs originate.

 

“Richards and Lockhart (1994) have suggested that ESL teachers’ beliefs can originate from any of the following six possible sources:

(1) Teachers’ past experience as language learners. For example, if a teacher has learned a second language successfully and comfortably by memorizing vocabulary lists, then there is a good change that the same teacher will have his or her students memorize vocabulary lists too.

(2) Experience of what works best in their classes. Richards and Lockhart (1994) suggest that this may in fact be the main source of beliefs about teaching for many second language teachers and as such many practicing teachers may not want to break an established, and perceived successful, routine.

(3) Established practice within a school that is difficult to change because the school has always used this method.

(4) Personality factors of teachers can be an important source of beliefs as some teachers really enjoy conducting role-play or group work in their classes while others are more comfortable conducting traditional teacher-fronted lessons.

(5) Educationally based or research-based principles can also be a source of teachers’ beliefs in that a teacher may draw on his or her understanding of research in second language reading to support use of predicting style exercises in reading classes.

(6) Method-based sources of beliefs suggest that teachers support and implement a particular method in their classes, “

 

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Principled Approach

Our approach of learning and teaching language affects everything that goes on in the classes. It is the cumulative body of knowledge and principles that enable teachers, as “technicians” in the classroom, to diagnose the needs of students, to treat students with successful pedagogical techniques, and to assess the outcome of those treatments. I’ll list some of the most accepted principles which should shape your approach to teaching. Continue reading