Do something you don’t want to do every day

06-Jun-2013

June has arrived, meaning we’re somehow already halfway through the year. That’s almost six months since those New Year resolutions you made. How many of you kept those gym passes? Stayed on the salads every day up until now? Put out that last cigarette? I’m not trying to make you feel guilty – it’s just really easy to get stuck in a routine and the comfort zone always seems like a nice place to put your feet up.

I sometimes think back to when making snap decisions and doing new things seemed so easy and I wonder where those days went. A few years back I upped sticks and moved to Spain on a whim. I was even once cajoled into doing a bungee jump (that was an excuse to get a picture in here) a couple of (unrelated) decisions I’m not sure I’d be able to make so quickly these days. But that said, it’s not always the big changes and decisions that make you feel refreshed in life.

Danny Wallace, a British comedian and the author of the bestseller Yes Man wrote: “probably some of the best things that have ever happened to you in life happened because you said yes to something. Otherwise things just sort of stay the same”.

Wise words. You might be wondering where this post is going. But no doubt the teachers among you feel the same way with your classes – déjà vu can set in, especially if you’re teaching with the same books, recycling a tried and tested lesson plan or preparing yet another batch of TOEIC takers for the test using the same material as last year…and the year before that.

ELT conferences can give you endless inspiration for new teaching theory, sure, but sometimes they can seem a little bit abstract in practice or sometimes just plain daunting. However, at the IATEFL conference in Liverpool back in April, Macmillan English Campus’ very own Sarah Milligan (that’s Sarah, on the right) gave a presentation which was the talk of the Merseyside town, all about making things fresh again as a teacher and challenging you to Do Something You Don’t Want To Do Every Day. Sarah talked about how changing a few little things in your classes can work as great ways to energise the class – which is good for your students and you, as well as great for your own self-development and ensuring you’re still the expert. The hardest things are often the most important too, but the easiest to overlook.

Sarah’s giving the talk again today at 11.00 and 16.00 UK time and you can sign up here. Once signed up, you will receive an email with a link to the session. Whether you’ve been teaching for five minutes or five years, trying something challenging or new in your lesson will not only inspire your students, but also unearth a fresh outlook on teaching and liven up your day.

If you can’t make it today, then email us and we can send you a link to listen back to Sarah’s talk.

Peter

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