Larissa Kobetz
I thought the readings were informative and the tests were reasonable, but I have several problems with the lesson plan portion of the course. First of all, we were requested to create a single one-hour intermediate lesson plan for two very different grammar points, the second and third conditionals, which my reviewer, Jon, even described as "one of the more difficult grammatical areas of English". I have taught intermediate English for two years and, first of all, my students were rarely up to the level of these conditionals. I usually taught conditionals in High Intermediate 2, which is closer to advanced. Second of all, two relatively unrelated grammar points is a bit much for a one-hour lesson. In an actual classroom, this would have a very high risk of overwhelming and confusing the students. The lesson plan reviewer also pedantically insisted that we create a single ESA lesson plan comprising both different grammar points, instead of teaching one first and the other second, which meant we had to repeatedly switch back and forth between tenses during the lesson. This was especially confusing since the second conditional takes place in a hypothetical present and future and the third conditional takes place in a hypothetical past. I can't believe that teaching both simultaneously is the most effective way to enable student understanding. I was asked to resubmit my lesson plan for violating this arbitrary rule, and because I hadn't included enough explanation of the tenses. My experience in the classroom has convinced me that the level of explanation the reviewer was requesting would not be easily comprehended in an intermediate lesson, especially in a single hour. I ended up having to include about 600 words of explanation in five minutes, which is frankly absurd. This was all moderately frustrating, but after resubmitting my lesson plan once I was asked to resubmit again because my new plan included a review of the zero and first conditionals. THIS, apparently, was considered too confusing. In fact my reviewer actually had the audacity to tell me that "it’s important not to overload students with too much information in a single lesson." I honestly did not get the impression that he was a real teacher. There were a few aspects of my lesson that I might have picked on if I were him, but including a review of the previous lesson was not one of those things. He went on to say, "Covering additional conditionals in the same intermediate level lesson could be counter-productive, and should therefore be avoided." Yes, Jon, I agree, but if this is the case then why did you ask me to create a lesson plan about two different conditionals in the first place? In conclusion, I had a fairly good opinion of this course until I reached the lesson plan stage. I would have understood if my lesson plan had been rejected for meaningful reasons, but the reasons my reviewer gave me seemed rather hypocritical and arbitrary. It made me lose faith in this course and the competence of the reviewers.
Helpful Report
Posted 4 years ago
ITTT TEFL Online is rated 3.00 based on 3 reviews

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