Critical Mass ELT
I’m an English teacher and teacher educator living in Greece teaching Balkan university students. I am interested in global Englishes, identities and language teaching, critical pedagogy, the commercialization of ELT and creative use of technology in the classroom. My doctoral research is on the impact of English language teaching in Serbia. You can find me on twitter @sjhannam
Having worked in the teaching of English for 17 years, I sometimes wonder why it is that there isn’t more discussion of some the ways in which the industry works that don’t necessarily benefit the majority of teachers or students. And I use the word industry here to denote a multinational business entity that is primarily there to make make a lot of money for a very small number of people when you look at how many are involved in delivering the lessons or producing the materials, most of whom don’t really make much money at all. Its a simplistic equation I grant you – but it seems to hold true when you examine the situation on a global scale.
I think we can go further by trying to understand a bit better how the ELT industry functions and operates and talk about the ways in which everyday practices affect our lives as teachers, writers, teacher educators, researchers or educational managers. Looking at things critically means taking a step back and examining all the parts of ELT, especially those aspects that can be easily overlooked. What I want to do is step outside my comfort and safety zone sometimes and look between the gaps of the way people understand things to see if there is more to things than meets the eye. If this is something you are interested in too, well maybe you can join me in some of the discussions.
The views expressed here are my personal thoughts and beliefs on ELT and do not reflect the views of individuals/institutions I have any contact with in my professional life
I am interested in criticising and unravelling institutions, structures and power bases, not judging individuals. I therefore do not use anyone’s name unless they are first invited and given the right to reply or unless I am citing their published work.