At this point of my PhD studies and teaching under grad students, I use EMI when there is another teacher who is not using Finnish in teaching. I ensure that students understand what we expect they to do or learn. But I am not teaching the same things in Finnish. I only answer if they ask something that they did not understood or I will continue the teaching in Finnish or English.
I think this style is good for the new (first or second year) students who are not so comfortable to use English. They will learn it in action. They have to use English in their studies and work life if they continue in this field.
In the future, I will use EMI in lecturing and lab works. It is good, because it is much more clear language to use in our field. We have straight orders and cause-effect relationship when the English do not give too much flexibility to understand something wrong. But there is a problem, when a student or a teacher do not understand some word or sentence which meaning is decisive. If the language does not bend, this might be a dead end.
From a student perspective, there is a good teachers and “bad” teachers who use EMI in different way. Sometimes when the grammar in EMI might be good, the accent is so strong that the listening is taking the energy from learning.
I haven´t heard before about kinaesthetic language learning. It was interesting to hear and try it. I think it works with small children and those who are focused to the issues that are meant to be learnt.
Still. What if there is a student or a child, who is not comfortable with him- or herself? How to work with this kind of student? He/she may remember only that part of teaching where they have to do something that is not feeling good or right. They do not learn if they are too focused on their feelings and stressful situation. Do they have to take part to the activity session or can they watch it first if they want?
For me, it was difficult to learn the new language because I was too focused to the ball or movements. That is because I try too much to do everything correctly and learning new language is hard to me. So I just tried to stay on my feet 🙂 and tried not to be too competitive (because there was this ball 😀 ).
But I think that I am going to use this method in our lectures if the topics are too heavy and lessons too long. Moving between the learning parts is refreshing and maybe this will help someone to internalize example how the receptors works on the cell surface. So thank you Mariana, Katarzyna and Anneli.
There can be multiple challenges in the teaching, both with students and teachers.
Students motivation, background, age, experiences, friends, life situation and order of precendence can have a positive or negative impact on learning. In some cases, it is not for either (to teacher or student) to push the student towards a better grade if the student have choose to use his/her time to something else. She/he has valued something more important than the one in question. Sometimes the average results is good enough. This is the question what teachers should ask before the courses. So teachers can push those students who want to reach the better scores, but they need some support.
The word push can contain negative and positive atmosphere. In this text, I think it is positive word. Almost like support. From here we can continue to the another problem. Unique perspectives. To someone, push (even it is a support to another) can be distressing and mean. At this point, the teacher had to know what to do.
The same things that affects to students learning can affect to teaching. Teachers are also individuals, who have their own thoughts. The difference between teacher and the students is that at the same time the teacher have to teach some detailed topics and follow the atmosphere in the classroom. Teachers should sense the learning levels (tiredness, blank look etc.) from the students. Then the teacher can change the voice volume, topic or take a break from monology. But! Teachers are not fully responsible for learning. They can help and provide some support and tips, but after all, students have to do the work.
These challenges are just a glimbse of all the factors that affect to learning and teaching. I think that the teachers have a massive role in the classrooms and teaching situtations. Teachers can prevent or contribute to the existence of these challenges. However, there are as many ways as there are people.
Before the course starts, I use technology to prepare the information to share and the example situations to show how some steps should be done. I use the Internet to search data, information, articles and methods. I use computer and phone to do that. When I am teaching I use PowerPoint and videos to make the learning methods easier. It is easier to start to work in laboratory when you have seen methods step-by-step. After that, the students know what they should think and prepare before the actual work, in theory. In the lab, the safety is most important thing and then will come the learning and results. That´s why the technology have done the teaching easier for us. We can show before the actual works what to consider when working with dangerous reagents.
Technology could be more useful if there is more voice activity in the phones and tablets. In the lab, we cannot touch almost anything with the gloves. It could be easier to command the tablet to show something that we need to check, without using hands.
Technology can not replace the ordinary learning, because if the students do not listen and be focused, they will not learn and they might cause a danger situations. Technology do not put the information to their brains automatically. Students have to do it all by themselves.
TACE 2017 – Anniina Runtuvuori – 19.9.2017