Most successful schools in Japan have good teaching materials whether it’s a textbook, flashcards or other various materials. A good school knows there can always be improvements but it’s important that teachers working for a school know how to use their schools’ system first and foremost. Too many teachers think they always know better and choose to go their own way. I’ve seen it over and over in Japan. For some reason, many people think they know better, despite having very little experience teaching. When a system has been used for years and been shown successful I think it’s extremely arrogant to simply dismiss it. Rather we need to master it and learn how to adapt it to different students. Once we’ve accomplished that then it’s simply a matter of knowing your own students and knowing what works for which student. No two students are alike and so it’s up to the teacher to meld the system to meet their needs. Using the Smith’s system I’ve got a good foundation for most classes as well as the freedom to try a few things with the students that require a little something more.
How well do you know your students?