Recently two of the best-know names in our business, Adrian Underhill and Jim Scrivener, have started a new blog where they challenge what they see as the contemporary tendency for teachers to settle for good-enough. I haven’t watched enough classes lately to agree or disagree with Underhill and Scrivener’s observation that these days many teachers do
little more than a series of announcements to start up and close down exercises and activities. There is typically a lack of “up-close” teaching skills, no “hands-on” work with language and little or no engagement with the process or experience of learning. Much of traditional “teaching” is devolved to the coursebook. And coursebooks are now so good that they can take that strain.
…but I do welcome any blog that challenges us, as teachers, to do the best job we can.
I wonder if this good-enough teaching, if it is really a thing, relates to a shift in teacher identity from teacher as professional, where teachers are expected to be skilled and knowledgeable enough to teach in whatever way is required by the needs of their students, to teacher as technician, who is required to teach only what is set down by a strict curriculum or to the needs of a standardized test.