martes, 1 de febrero de 2011

Something to say about: NNESTs


What does NNESTs stand for? Well, if you didn´t know, here it is: Non-native English Speaking Teachers. I am one, for that matter, and proud of it, too. Come to think of it, most teachers I know are NNESTs! What´s more, the majority of English teachers are! Uff, what a relief! I had started to think we were kind of intruders in a world full of "gringos" who are the non plus ultra of the language. But wait a minute! We also have things to chip in here, don´t we? Of course we do. For starters, we have learned the language and gone through all (or almost all) the troubles associated with understanding, assimilating and producing messages in a foreign language. Sadly enough, many (too many, in my opinion) native speaking teachers I have met in my teaching carreer do not want to even learn Spanish. A pitty, really, not only because they are showing disrespect for the local culture but also because they are not developing. Trying a different language is a very good way to put yourself into the other person´s shoes, experience the frustration and / or satisfaction of being able to tackle communication in another tongue; and that´s an invaluable resource for any language teacher: understanding the student´s position first-hand does not come in any one-hour workshop. I am not going to talk about the "mochileros" (those native speakers who come to "teach" whithout any prepartion at all) who are so well-considered by some, it´s not worth the effort.
All this talk comes up because a very good friend of ours, Carmen Caceda, just sent me a link to a TESOL Essential Teacher article on precisely this topic. A NNEST teacher who is given the task of teaching German. A challenge.
Read the article HERE.

1 comentario:

charly2604 dijo...

It's very weird to me why many native English speakers who teach that language in our country, for example, don't want to learn our native language, Spanish.

And when talking to them, they expect us to do it using their native language!!! unbelievable!!

well, i think there's nothing they can do to get interested in learnig to speak decent Spanish. As Cesar said, they're missing out on a good oportunity to grow and develop.