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How teachers can increase their confidence in the classroom
Battling shyness, stage fright, and nervousness are all things a new teacher must deal with when entering their career. However, there are many ways to quickly overcome this problem and inspire confidence in the teacher, the classroom and therein the students. First off, creating confidence in the classroom begins by creating confidence in ones’ self and ones’ abilities. One way to do this is to act the part. Body language and voice are vital to creating confidence. Standing with the head held high and the shoulders held back while projecting a loud clear voice will surely inspire confidence in the classroom. Also, smiling, eye contact and the use of gestures and facial expressions will engage the students and show your enthusiasm. The teacher can also practice at home in front of a mirror with pacing of lessons and volume of voice to inspire the next days’ lessons. Another point that cannot be emphasized enough is preparation. A well planned and engaging lesson is critical to being successful as a teacher. To plan a successful lesson several items must be taken into account. A few of these are: students interests and hobbies, students skill level, variety of lessons, and the improvisation variable for when things don’t go according to plan. The first three mentioned are necessary to consider in planning. The last variable is also necessary for the teachers’ success but requires the teacher to act on their toes. When students show a particular interest or disinterest the teacher should be able to tweak, adjust or entirely change the lesson plan to meet the students’ needs and interests. There are a few other tips that can help new teachers. One of these is to have the students give their feedback from time to time. This can help to improve as a teacher and help the students have a better experience, thus improving the quality of the classroom for both parties. Another point is to research other teaching styles and methods. This can be done by reviewing course books and online materials, and subscribing to ESL periodicals and magazines. Not only will this increase the teachers’ confidence and repertoire, but it will keep them up to date with new teaching methodology and research. Another thing a teacher can do is to observe other teachers in their classrooms in order to gain insight. Likewise, the teacher can ask another teacher to sit in on their own lessons in order to improve. Another way to do this is to record your own lessons via audio or video to analyze and reflect on your teaching style (as well as seeing how you progress over time!). Lastly, another important point is attitude. A positive attitude will create a fun and enjoyable class putting all at ease. Even if you don’t feel that you have confidence in yourself, your attitude can help you overcome struggles much more successfully in order to improve the experience. These are only a few of the tips available for nervous new teachers. Much confidence also comes with time and practice. I chose this topic because I am a nervous new teacher that can surely benefit from these ideas. If a teacher shows their confidence and enthusiasm, embraces a positive attitude, and is well prepared for every lesson, I think a great classroom experience will follow. By using these tips the teachers’ presence in the classroom can be much more rewarding for themselves and the students. References Case, Alex (October, 2008). Ways to Boost Your Teaching Confidence. Retrieved from: http://edition.tefl.net/articles/teacher-technique/boost-teaching-confidence/ Fifield, Adrienne (October 10th, 2006). TEFL Building Teachers Confidence in the Classroom. Retrieved from: http://www.teflcorp.com/articles/79-tefl-how-teachers-can-increase-confidence-in- class/248-building-teachers-confidence-in-the-classroom.htm Valazza, Gerardo. Professional Development: Teacher Development and Confidence. Retrieved from: http://www.onestopenglish.com/support/methodology/professional- development/professional-development-teacher-development-and-confidence/146473.article

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