Teach English in Gaotai Zhen - Hanzhong Shi

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When being a teacher of any subject there are few things that are indispensable to have a successful class, like a syllabus, a lesson plan, teachings aids, among others. However, in opinion, one of the must important things a teacher should do in order to have a successful class is to establish rapport. As a former student myself, and I believe must of us, when a teacher does not establish rapport the students tend to misbehave or to lose their interest. And as a teacher myself, I know understand the importance of establishing rapport with my students. According to the Cambridge English Dictionary, rapport is “a good understanding of someone and an ability to communicate well with them” and when establishing rapport, as a teacher, with students you are creating a bond and a good atmosphere for learning and having a successful class. Establishing rapport is important especially if you’re teaching in a different country or to foreign students. However, before intending to do so, one should always consider the cultural differences of the country. For example, in the U.S.A when teaching basic English to young learners when you pat students while praising their work is a way of establishing rapport. On the other hand, if this same practice is done in Thailand it will be taken in the wrong way and can produce the opposite of establishing rapport. A teacher always deals with different situations and should always find the best solution for the group. One very common hurdle among teachers are the students’ misbehavior, especially among young and teenage learners. In a scenario where this issue is happening, a teacher that has establish rapport with their students is more likely to gain the attention of the class back faster than a teacher who has not established rapport. This can be seen with substitute teachers where students do not have a bond and might not be interested on what a substitute teacher can establish in a short period of time. When teaching business English, misbehavior can happen less frequently because students tend to be older and with a career specific purpose of taking the class. In this case is still important to establish rapport so the students feel comfortable to ask questions and to create a mutual bound of respect. Business English students appreciate the explanation of every activity and worksheet they do because they can see where they are investing their time in, this will help them engage more on the lesson and establish rapport with the teacher. Teachers have a very important job, to mold people to be successful. Therefore, establishing rapport should be indispensable to have a successful class. All students and groups are different and must be consider their age, English level (when studying English as a second language), and even their nationality. When teaching abroad, it is important to make some research on the country to avoid any misunderstandings that can happen because of cultural differences. So, if a teacher wants to have a successful class, my advice would be to always have planned different ways to establish rapport.