ERIC Number: ED252070
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Nov
Pedagogical Self-Image Is the Key to Better Student-Teacher Interaction.
Imagery and metaphors for language teaching, language teachers, and language students that appear in the literature of language teacher training do not reflect a sense of mutual teacher-student cooperation or complementarity, but may instead show why most second language students seldom achieve more than minimal language proficiency. Terminology currently in use includes references to students as raw materials and teachers as cooks, teaching as a cultivating or nurturing activity, the teacher as alchemist, the teacher as marksman with language or group as a "target," the teacher as fisherman "casting a net" or "streaming" students, teaching as production, the teacher as caretaker, the teacher as clinician and the student as client, and teaching as performing arts. In most cases, the teacher is seen as active and the student as passive. If these metaphors and images represent the language teaching profession's collective values and typical attitudes, examination of them may also help to understand the conditioned teacher-student relationship, to see the factors that shape productive or unproductive attitudes, and to contribute to greater teacher freedom and creativity in choosing appropriate self-images for the classroom. As long as the profession continues to think and feel in terms of the current metalanguage of language teaching, it will not be able to promote the kind of language-using activities in which there is as much student involvement and as little teacher direction as possible. (MSE)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (Chicago, IL, November 16-18, 1984).