The following are three impressions from ten of my Professional Development students who listened to Chad’s talk the other day, I think they are insightful:
Student #1 – It is clear that Chad is a good teacher. He is modern, positive and open to students’ opinions. It was a pleasure for me to talk to him, he has charisma. When we introduced ourselves, Chad tried to remember our names by heart. After each introduction he pronounced our names, so he could remember us. While getting introduced he had a little chat with us, and during the conversation he called us by our names. That was his way to find a common language with people. Nothing sounds better for a person than his name. Imagine how you get happy when someone knows your name. Your answer will be: “Oh, you remembered me”.
Chad is sociable and you needn’t to try to say something to make him speak. On the contrary, he shared his life experiences with us and tried to get all of us free and comfortable. He didn’t ask to stop him in case we do not understand him. It shows he was sure he will find a way to our flow of ideas. The fact that he has a family of teachers surprised me, it is ok to have a family of engineers, businessmen, lawyers or something like those. I remember how my teacher used to tell me not to choose a profession of a teacher. She was tired of teaching, and it is clear she won’t let her child to be a teacher. Chad’s family is a devoted teacher family and the fact that he didn’t succeed in his business can be explained as “a call of blood”. [not sure what that means?]
Earlier I met Chad’s little children and didn’t even think that they might be studying in Kazakh schools. I think the teachers must be happy to have students like Chad’s children. I don’t know whether you experienced it or not, but it is a great pleasure to speak to little Americans. I do really like it. They are so sweet.
However, the most important thing I liked about Chad is his knowledge of Kazakh. His Kazakh is very good, I am saying not as a Kazakh,who is happy to see American speaking my native language, but as a person, who does really appreciate his knowledge. I watched the way he spoke Kazakh, and I admit that his Kazakh is perfect.
In an hour conversation, we felt so easy and relaxed that we didn’t notice the time passed. However, it is the usual thing that happens to us when we have a quest speaker invited.)))
Student #2 – I confess that I was really waiting for Chad’s talk since our teacher mentioned about that. As a classmate had said, we’ve heard a lot about him from a student of Foundation Program who is from Semey. She really admires him. And now me also. Especially I like how he speaks Kazakh – like a real Kazakh man. We, Kazakh people, need to learn much from him. Because really, as one of my classmates said, if a Kazakh man speaks incorrect Kazakh we start to make fun of him or just forbid him to talk in this language. Maybe we do it because we don’t want this man to make fun of the language making so many errors. But I do agree with Chad, we MUSTN’T behave in that way, otherwise no one would learn Kazakh.This is very complicated issue and we, all the Kazakh people, should join in order to save our mother tongue and stop speaking Russian to each other.
Also it is obvious that Chad is a very smart, experienced teacher. In one hour I learned from him so many useful things. If I talk in general, we had time just for introducing ourselves, but he shared the techniques and methods with us only making comments on our research topics. If only we had more time… But nowadays people tend to be so busy, I know it from my own experience. I even don’t have for myself on weekends! Anyway, the techniques Chad mentioned, like making the students create language situation themselves or arranging one day or night of English, using pair works, also using bean or such kinds of ways of positive motivation… I think all these could be very useful and effective in teaching not only a foreign language but also Kazak.
Student #3 – It was the best talk I’ve ever had with guest speakers, because Chad knew Kazakh language and our traditions too, which gave us an opportunity to learn and share our teaching methods. I was proud of his Kazakh, his speech was like a Kazakh man’s. He gave us good advice in Kazakh, how to encourage people to speak Kazakh. And all my classmates followed his advice, it means his advice works. After the class, all my classmates started to speak Kazakh, even those who had never spoken it. I think if we English teachers know Kazakh as well as Russian, we will show our lessons to Kazak teachers teaching students in Kazakh and using the same great methods and approaches. I think, people slowly understand the importance of Kazakh language. Even, in president’s election the candidates have to pass Kazakh language first. It is one of the main task for the candidates. Some of them passed it successfully, some of them failed shamefully.
(to be continued)