One of the main reasons I love working at Smith’s Kotoen is the wonderful relationships I’ve developed with my students. Working at a smaller school, I tend to teach the same students every week, which makes it easier to track their progress. One of my students was so happy last week that she watched a movie in English and understood most of it without needing to read the subtitles. I think she was even happier that her husband was surprised by this! Another could hardly speak any English when she started, and now 90% of the time manages full sentences. The best students though, are the ones who jokingly claim they can’t speak English because they’re “too old”, and “always forget everything”, but then remember last week’s one point, or other vocab, and surprise themselves.
Smith’s “teachers” aren’t teachers in the traditional sense of the word; we’re Coaches of Communicative Confidence. Building up someone’s confidence and encouraging them, and making the “I can’t speak English” students realize they can speak English is the most amazing feeling. So when my students say “thank you” at the end of the lesson, my “thank you” back is “thank you for trying and believing in yourself”.
By the way, Sunday November 4th we’re having a student lunch in Kotoen. If you’d like to come along and meet our family, you’re very welcome! Just call the secretaries for more information.