Monday, May 21, 2012

Teaching students of Architecture

I was not trained to become an ESP teacher. I did not know anything about Architecture. I did not know how to call parts of the building and I did not remember anything about Physics. Above all, I did know what art and drawings and sketches and CAD are. But I admire beautiful and elegant and great masterpieces of architects and civil engineers and I admire people's creativeness and imagination. For the improvement of English teaching at my university, our faculty's teachers are put into different groups responsible teaching students of different majors. I am in the group teaching Architecture majors. A demanding job.

Most of my students have very low level of English and they are not interested in English. Surely, English is difficult. If you do not work hard you won't master it. It does not matter with their first three credits. They study EGP (English for General Purposes). Easy to teach and teachers are familiar with EGP. But for their last credit, we are asked to teach them ESP (English for Specific Purposes). The teachers in my group have to try our best to fulfill this mission. Many difficulties do we face with. No good textbooks of English for Architecture available in Hanoi. Teachers have no experience in Architecture. What is called English for Architecture we have to use now is really not good. Besides we do not have much time to prepare our own materials... Believe it or not, sometimes I feel sorry for students. As a teacher, I wish one day we can design our own material for our students. I am on track to do that.

I post this photo because my friend wants to see me with my students. Here I am with my first year students and I teach them EGP. But  next year they have to study ESP. Some students are very good and some are very lazy. most of them are from other provinces and cities not Hanoi.