Jon Van hoften

Jon Van hoften TEFL certificate Jon Van hoften TEFL certificate


The Tefl teacher from Amsterdam


Dutch: Native English: Near native Spanish: Mediocre Germen: Mediocre Proficient in Word, excel and powerpoint

- Teaching Dutch and English - Football trainer (goalkeepers)

Worked for two years at a pension company

Business bachelor degree

My teaching approach

  • TEFL course

    Essay week 2

    Jon van Hoften


    ·      What you want them to learn


    Firstly I would like my students to learn English. Every lesson should be a stepping stone towards a higher level of English. Next to that i'd like my students to have fun during the lessons. Through conversation and games -expecially when students have higher levels and/or are underage students- i would like my students to improve their skills in a playfull and effective manner. The material used should stick. In my experience, this is done best by having a great time.


    ·      How you would consider students’ needs, students’ reasons for learning, motivations and affective factors


    Very important. Even more so when teaching children.

    Like I stated in the previous paragraph, pleasant classes make motivated and absorbing students. Thus I try to make class a great time for every student, taking in account their backgrood, mood and sense of humor. So next to the lesson and structure of the class (as found in the timetable on the intranet of oxbridge), I try to prepare myself as best as I can to the students individual or personal needs in terms of learning English and sitting in a classroom. For example I try to put more emphesis on certain topics when the company i'm teaching at is more in line with them. This depends also on the level of the students.


    Science teaches us intrensic motivated students learn better than extrensic motivated students thus I try to make the lesson as comfortable as possible for the students.Some students are shy anxious or self-consious. As a teacher it is important to make the student feel comfortable and come out of their shell or let the stressed student relax and forget about their worries when arriving to class. In my opinion it is important to built up a report with the students. Taking genuine interest in what the students are saying, even when it is unrelated to class.


    When dealing with shy or self-conscious students, the teacher should not put too much pressure on them. Neither should they be ignored. A way to deal with the situation is to give them a question you know they will be able to answer and give them praise for it. Demanding students could be challenged more than regular students.

    (source: Oxbridge TEFL course material)















    ·      Language skills and language areas you would give more importance to

    This depends on the level of the students I think.


    Whenever you are teaching a lower level student, the teacher has to put more emphasises on vocabulairy. The pronunciation and grammer are more left out and won't be corrected as much to keep the students motivated. When dealing with higher levels of English the emphasises should be more on the grammar.


    In terms of macro language skills i'd do the following:



                            Less                                         More

    Low:                Writing                                   Reading, listening and speaking

    High:               Listening and reading           Writing and speaking


    In my opinion the micro language skills (pronunciation, grammar, spelling) -except for vocabulary- will become more important when dealing with a higher level class.


    ·      How you would structure a course (i.e. organize the syllabus)


    Again depending on the level of the students. Also I wouldn't teach two topics, grammar or structures one after the other. To keep motivation and flexibility in the students learning process there should be a different part in between topics, grammarsections or structures.



    ·      An example of a how a class would be structured:


    Ideally i'd structure the class as following:


    1. Starting with some attantiongrasping question such as asking about a relevant newsstory or item suited to the student or its company.

    2. Deepen into the English language with some grammar or structure.

    3. Taking a step back with some vocabulary.

    4. Deepen into the English language again with some grammar or structure.

    5. Ending lightly with a topic

    Wrapping up the lesson with recuperating onto the students weak points or aspects in a positive manner.


    The sequence stated above depends on the time and level of the students. When dealing with lower levels the emphesis would be more on the vocabulary and less on the grammar and in some cases on the structure.


    ·      Which would be the vehicular language of the classroom and why (interaction and conditions)?


    This would be English. I, as a teacher however would not immediately cut off native conversations between the students, especially when the topic would be the language taught in the classroom.


    Only if the student really only just started to learn English, rarely there could be some native language of the students spoken by the teacher. This would be to keep the time well spended and after the student been given time to come up with the right words or the possibility for fellow students to help out.


    In my opinion this should be done this way to to keep the emphasises on the language taught in class(English). Only when the students (as a whole) really aren't able to come up with a reference, should the teacher intervene.



    ·      How you would assess learning outcomes and why (interaction and conditions)?


    As stated earlier different students have different needs, so the teacher should adapt his/her lessonplan.I'd assess learning outcomes through estimates of the students ways of learning (Kinestetic, visual, auditory) and the students capabilities in English. By adapting the lessons to the students needs, the students will gain the most.


    ·      How your approach would change considering:

    o   Brief description of activities you would do and objectives of each


    Well i'd probably just follow the lesson structure as stated earlier.Also I might add in a few games, such as the word-family game, where the teacher start with a word and the students would come up with words related to them. For example: Dinner, cutlery, knife, fork etc.This game builds up a report between the student and the teacher. Also it's a lot of fun.


    o   Materials you would use, including why you’d choose them


    Depending on the way the student prefers to learn i'd put more emphasise on either the kenetic, visual or auditory part of the syllabus.


    o   How practice of TL would be carried out


    Mainly one on one where I would pick another student every couple of minutes. Other students can listen and possibly help out. If I would notice one student to be way better than the rest i'd put more emphasise on him or her, just to make a positive example. Afterwards I'd like him/her to help out others when I'm dealing with lesser students.


    o   the teacher’s attitude towards errors


    This again depends on the level. When dealing with higher levels i'd be more strict. Lower levels would be approached by me in a more lenient matter.


    Also when dealing with a piece of writing readed out by the students, pronounciation errors would be written down on a piece of paper. Only after the reading, -to keep motivation- i'd ask for the student to read them once more. This way the weak words will be strengthened. Obviousy this recuperation is always done in a positive manner.


    o   the teacher’s roles


    Depending on the student his or hers level and personality I could be an analyst, guide, controller / organizer, resource, facilitator, playmaker, psychologist, authority, conversationalist or an assessor.In general I think a good teacher should be an approachable teacher.


    Good teacher have in my opinion the following characteraspects:


    1) Patient
    2) Flexible
    3) Sense of humor
    4) Empathetic
    5) Intelligent
    6) Cooperative
    7) Knowledgeable
    8) Enthusiastic
    9) Resourceful
    10) Genuine

    (source: Oxbridge TEFL course material)


    o   the students’ roles


    Depending on the students level and personality there are four roles to differentiate:

    The imitator which generally has a low level of English.

    The passive learner/receiver which generally has a low level of English or has little knowledge or feeling with the subject or topic adressed.

    The communicator which generally has a high level of English but just has some holes in its vocabulary and grammar.

    The self-manager which is generally very motivated and has a high level of english and

    -just as the communicator- could have some holes in its vocabulary and grammar.

    (source: Oxbridge TEFL course material)


    o   differences between teaching beginners and advanced students


    Other then the previous examples made between teaching beginners and advanced students is that students whom are beginners usually needs more references and usually learn best through visual or audiative ways. The more advanced has more vocabulary thus they can improve their English through the Kinesthetic way.


    o   different age groups


    In general, children soak up new knowledge easier than adults. Thus when teaching adults as a teacher you should be more patient. Adolesants are in between, but can be less focussed and less motivated. As a teacher try to involve them into the languagelearning by for instance relating it to their way of living. 

Barcelona, Madrid, Beijing

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