John M. Green

Educational philosophy

As a language teacher, I believe in the development of second language proficiency through intensive use of the target language to send and receive messages.   Learners should not be afraid to make mistakes, because  making mistakes is a natural part of learning to do something new.  Learning to express ideas in another language easily and comprehensibly comes before learning to express ideas correctly, and the structure of language courses should reflect this.  It is important for students to know about how languages are learned, so that they can better manage their own learning through the setting of realistic goals and the selection of appropriate learning strategies.

In composition courses, I follow a process approach, beginning with techniques for getting ideas (prewriting and drafting), then moving on to organizing ideas (revising), and concluding with work on formal correctness (editing).

I believe classrooms should be happy places, because people learn best when the head and the heart work together.

I believe that learning happens best when students and teachers are excited about what is being learned.  We can all remember memorizing facts we didn't care about in school, and forgetting them after the test.  But when information means something to us, we learn it for keeps.

Good teachers make students care, and they make students work hard too.  Students sometimes use words like "fun" to describe what happens in such teachers' classrooms.  But it's much more than just fun.  Academic effort, hard work, and love of learning all go together.

Students are unique individuals, with varying personalities, styles, backgrounds, strengths and weaknesses.  I begin every semester with the hope that all of my students will be successful.  Not all students will succeed, but I do everything I can to see that students who want to learn do learn.  Sometimes this means extra help.  That's what I'm here for.

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Copyright 1998 by John M. Green