I came to teaching by an unusual route, mostly because, all through my early education, I hated my teachers. I hated them so much that after I finished University in Scotland I took three years to attempt to find myself.
During that time I did a variety of strange and unusual jobs, and then, while I was in Vienna, I met a friend who asked me to speak in English at a Montessori school. That’s the point when I realized that I liked teaching, and didn’t have to be like the teachers I remembered.
After Vienna, I went back to university and got my Masters in English Language Teaching. During that time, I worked with refugee support groups in Ireland, and also taught classes at the University as part of my practical teacher training.
It was then that I started thinking about the use of comic books in English language teaching.
When I was doing a discussion class about art, I brought in a comic book picture from Calvin and Hobbes and put it up next to the Mona Lisa and asked, which is art? The English native speaker supervisor scoffed and said, obviously the Mona Lisa, but my students didn’t understand the question. To them it didn’t matter what the medium was, it was the message that was important.
This became my thesis study—looking at the perceived and actual value of comic books in Second Language Acquisition.
Now that I am in Korea, I am enjoying teaching and using some of the techniques that I’ve learnt to encourage communication and student understanding through the use of comic books and task based learning.
I started this website to share my passions and insights into teaching with more people.
I hope you find something useful, interesting and inspiring for your own classroom.
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