Marcis Trautmanis
Certified English teacher profile

Marcis Trautmanis TEFL certificate Marcis TEFL certificate


Patient, professional and joyful teacher who deeply understands his students’ necessities as always learns new languages for himself.


Business skills Marketing and sales skills Consumer Behavior Managing sales team - 5 people Communication Marketing and Sales budgets, Excellent computer skills Skiing, Scuba Diving, Yoga.

My teaching approach

According to the latest theories about language learning instead of studying it is essential that students learn to speak. Speaking is the key to successful language acquiring process. You will wonder why? Speaking is the fundament of the language, it is exactly what people mean when saying: “I want to learn English”. It is impossible to learn something without practising it i.e. you can not learn skiing by reading the books of skiing techniques, you can not learn surfing while standing on the shore, drinking beers and talking about surfing, you have to practice, practice and one more time practice. In addition if one can speak, one can write, if one can write one can read i.e. mastering of one particular skill leads to acquisition of another. Thus, it is more than obvious that my main goal is to teach students to speak and my student’s goal should be learn to speak correctly expressing their ideas according to their intention. However, above all, I consider that teacher’s main target is to help students to acquire the knowledge that will serve their particular need by most appropriate enjoyable and effortless way.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that reading and writing is unimportant, I am trying to say, that practising speaking English, is the most important ingredient of language learning mix. Different students might have different goals of learning English i.e. to utter it at work in general, for business purposes, specific purposes as medicine, journalism or just travelling or even studies abroad, therefore, whichever the goal is, the BACKBONE remains the same - SPEAKING.

You may ask: “How do I know that or how can I be sure?” the answer is very simple: I am not an English native speaker and I believe it is not necessary to have a native like command of a language in order to teach it properly. The fact of having experienced the learning of 4 other languages (including Russian that is considered to be one of the world’s most complicated but in the mean time one of the most beautiful languages) allows me to understand the issues a learner can face and believe me, I have gone through different learning methods by myself.

There are pros and cons to all of offered methods, and most ESL teachers today employ bits and pieces of each to suit their teaching style and their students’ needs. However, I consider that a teacher has to use his common sense, combining whichever methods he wants, with one condition; to make students communicate/talk/laugh/interact as much as possible. Remember about THE BACKBONE.

I was taught Russian by Grammar Translation Method (GMT) or so called Classical Method that now is considered being “old school”, because of teaching students be more language analyzers rather than language users, but ONLY the fact, that I practiced it immediately on the streets and at home, has brought me to bilingualism.

Main disadvantages of GMT are that native language is superior to L2 and that the ability to communicate is not a goal. Focus is on reading and writing therefore students almost do not practice neither speaking nor listening or pronunciation. This method was widely used in 70’s, 80’s and 90’s in primary and secondary schools as students needed be prepared for the state exams. This method also is called “Lenin’s method” or “KGB’s Method” as this system was a widely used across all Soviet Union. People could read, understand and write, but they were totally unable to communicate. 

Below, I will do the quick overview of a few more methods I have experienced and which are widely known and mostly used around world nowadays.

All new methods have significantly shifted away from the pattern to use native language in the classroom and have become 100% communication orientated.


Berlitz or Direct method

In this method learners start very basically, acquiring simple vocabulary and phrases of everyday life and continuing with the grammar later on the course. This teaching method allows a learner to progress at his own pace, simulates authentic language situations, immersion is seen as a natural way of learning, direct feedback on pronunciation and use of vocabulary and grammar is given immediately and also no native language usage is allowed. Vocabulary is emphasized over grammar and the purpose of language learning is communication. Writing is considered to be an important skill and grammar is taught inductively no explicit grammar rules are given. The courses are taught by textbooks, that teacher uses during the entire course.

I have been in these types of courses; everything at the beginning seems going well, but despite that syllabus is based on situations or topics, which is good; there is a lack of information to understand linguistic structures. Also, as teacher follows textbooks and material is not up to date, classes could get boring. In addition, at the beginning there is too much unnecessary vocabulary that can causes some affective factors towards L2 acquisition and there is no memorization neither.


Communicative Method

The communicative approach uses the idea of a task (a piece of classroom work) as teaching strategy that integrates all four skills for communicative competence: productive skills (speaking, writing) and receptive skills (listening, understanding). It consists of a goal (what teacher wants students to learn during the class), an input and an interesting and motivating activity (directly related to the goal and the input).

Personally I consider that this one works very well as I learned Spanish by this method. It allows you to learn L2 in very meaningful and comprehensive way as you constantly develop all four skills. Whole class is as a one bounded unit with no interferences and all you learn you use right away. Very praiseworthy is that students learn to use grammar and vocabulary from the function, situational context, and the roles of the interlocutors thus correcting and avoiding interlanguage or language structures brought from their native language. The challenge of this method would be students who need to be provided with explicit instead of implicit grammar rules.


Oxbridge system

The roots of Oxbridge come from Communicative method. It is based on Triangular projection model where the aim is to let students acquire listening and speaking skills through communicative approach via in-class activities (structure, vocabulary, topic) all toughed in L2. This is innovative approach that aims to teach students communicating in all levels by acquiring English language effortlessly. There is no use of out-of-date textbooks as all teachers continuously prepare all materials according to students learning goals. Teacher is no more “general” in the class, he is a playmaker, which is much more active and dynamic than in the rest of the practices as he directs the game all the time so that the students score their best goals. In addition this method has its own trademark that is the way classes start and finish: with Quick Questions at the beginning and a recap at the end.


My approach to teaching

Personally, I have never been taught by system like Oxbridge, therefore at the beginning I had doubts that the system was solid and could make somebody to progress, because there were neither repetition nor homework involved. As more as I participated in the classes I noticed that students really enjoyed their classes and had a progress already at the end of the same class. I have noticed that they enjoy the fact that there is no home works that makes their life easier and they always came to classes full of energy and willingness to communicate.

My approach to teaching would be very similar to Oxbridge system, but with a few modifications.

Let’s take intermediate level for instance. Instead of wrap up questions, I would ask my students, what they have learned during this lesson. They would have to answer mutually. According to their answers I would be able to detect what exactly they have learned and what would be worth repeating. Also, it is proven that at next class, they will remember exactly what they had reproduced at the end of this class.

In addition, I would kindly ask them to do homework to strengthen their reading and writing skills. It would be a topic (sent by mail) where they would have to make a written summary of 5-10 sentences.

The lesson’s (60 min) structure for P3 would look like this:








Homework check












Wrap up (what have we learned today?) *


* Class always should end with something funny a joke or some funny idiom.

As everywhere, teacher has many different roles to perform according to situation, the most important is to find a common-sense-equilibration what to do and how to react appropriately in any situation.

I am not a native speaker, therefore I clearly understand that main issue of L2 learners is willingness to apply their native’s language structure to new one.

Generally, learner’s main goal is to learn speaking or at least learn communicating in English, therefore, teacher’s main goal is to understand student’s needs to design, create or adapt any learning material or method if they students don not respond accordingly and sometimes, even by improvising, lead his students towards the victory. His main task should be guiding his students into the world of L2 acquisition instead of judging them. He always should use appropriate language, avoiding unnecessary colloquialisms, give excellent examples within in the right context followed by appropriate feedback as well as distribute STT evenly and make students smile. He should grade the language, provide an appropriate input and read his students non-verbal communication. Only authentic material, realia, games, dialogues and daily situations should be used avoiding boring textbooks or gap filling. Praising and encouraging reading, watching movies and exposing themselves to L2 outside the classes is essential. He should be very well prepared for every class having clear understanding about differences either teaching adults (beginners vs. more advanced students) or children. 

Children doesn’t consider English learning as a responsibility, therefore classes have to be fun and pleasant, full of entertainment to make language acquisition natural and spontaneous. It could be reached through visual and auditory stimuli incorporating with interactive games (bingo, cards), drawings etc. Keep children busy!!!

Adults, however require more understanding of language structures as they learn it in more conscious way taking into considerations their personal goals and previous learning experiences. Paying more attention to correction of pronunciation and grammar mistakes is required, as well as differentiation of activities according to students’ proficiency level and skills. It is to say for advanced students TTT is very low and more topic activities should be conducted whereas with lover level should be all the way around.

I think that we teachers have to pay a lot of attention to self-reflection and how our students feel at the end of the class - they are our mirrors. Smiling and happy students at the end of the class: GOOD JOB DONE!

Let’s make the new language Learning FUN!