Teach English in Tonggousi Zhen - Hanzhong Shi

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Business English is a powerful tool to build bridges that would connect two individuals or group of people to reach common goals. Having one common language as means of communication is of great help to start and build a project. This reminds me of the Tower of Babel, which was one of the Biblical Literature. The story of its construction boiled down on people of having the same language, which resulted to building a mighty city and the tower with its top in the heaven to make a name for them. However, to disrupt this self-seeking glory, their work was disrupted when God decided to confuse their language that they could not able to understand each other which caused them to dispersed all over the earth. From here, it shows the magnitude of importance of using a lingua franca for attaining common goals and how certain goals are unmet when common language is absent. Moreover, Business English as defined by Wikipedia is a “part of English for specific purposes and can be considered a specialism within English language learning and teaching.” In this sense, it covers a multitude of themes which depends on the group of people or an individual needs. Like for example, how to trade, how to write business letter as well as informal letters that would meet their goals, know specific vocabularies that they need to use for specific purpose and a lot more. Therefore, teachers of Business English should prepare lessons and make or prepare appropriate materials that would suit students’ needs in this area to communicate effectively using the International Language whether in written or in verbal form. Now, based from my previous experiences in teaching Business English, I would like to share some tips to other teachers that I believe would help their students who are taking Business English class. The lists below spelt out things to consider in teaching in this area of English. 1. Know your students. This statement encompasses the teachers’ knowledge limited to individual’s purpose, needs, and their level of English. Their personal purpose of embarking this journey would give us a hint on the individuals’ or company’s goals. As for their needs and level, a valid assessment must be conducted in order to gauge their current attainment in English; these could be in the aspect of vocabularies, grammar usage, pronunciation and many more. 2. Plan. This means a teacher must thoughtfully and carefully plan how to lead students to their purpose of which they had set for themselves or how to bring them to the goal set by the company whom they are working for. This process involves what to teach, the materials to use whether authentic or non-authentic, hours of teaching, number of students, their availability and the methodology. What to teach them is indicated in a course syllabus, these should be contained with the lessons they want to achieve. The materials must be suitable and relevant to the lesson and objective, it could be taken from various sources and could be resourced from different means, like for example, magazine, specific website, articles in the newspaper, global news, or workbooks, as long as it will serve the purpose. Of course, the hours of teaching and their availability matters, a teacher must take into consideration on how long students can make a commitment and their preferred time as well. Students in this area could be working or might have a scheduled on their own. Thus, it is crucial for the teacher to be informed of their availability to avoid potential problems in scheduling classes. Another factor to consider in planning is the number of students. Is it a one to one basis, a small group or a big class participant? Knowing the number of participants will affect how the classes will go on, as a matter of fact, it will guide a teacher on how he or she will conduct his/her lesson effectively. Another aspect of planning is the methodology that could be applied in class. Let say, a teacher like me who lives in Brazil, must take into consideration, that most or majority of English schools are opting to traditional method, whereby they prefer a teacher to have at least an intermediate level in Portuguese. In this case, students must be aware from the very start that learning the language could be acquired using other methodology. A teacher could demonstrate the ESA method which is far better that finding an equivalent of L1 to L2. ESA method will not only help students expand their vocabularies, but also progress in Speaking, Writing, Listening, and Reading. ESA method also encourages students to talk more and express themselves using the English Language. 3. Assess. This process is essential not only to teachers but most importantly to students. It indicates how much they have learned and will help them motivate to get engage more into learning. There are various tools that could help assess students, but as for me, I prefer to assess them by looking back at the course syllabus and write my own assessment that contained topics stated in the syllabus. 4. Give extra-mile of service. As a teacher, I personally hold on to perception “do beyond what students’ expectation”. For as long as it does not hurt the policy of the company where I worked for or will I be working for. Some of ways on how I exercise extra-mile of service is by continuously learning and searching for students’ need and benefits, in this case, by reading more business English books or other informative materials regarding business English, showing them a genuine interest to help them improve, encourage them by smiling and giving words of appreciation, and a lot more positive gestures to help them build their confidence and sustain their motivation. In conclusion, as a teacher of Business English, my responsibility is to help them achieve their goal by providing them English Language skills they need in their workplace and businesses, be it in constructing sentences with correct grammar, writing business letter, vocabularies for trading, answering phone calls, writing application letter and many more. Doing these so, will help them build something because they know how to use the common or international language that would connect them to others.