Jia-Pei Betty Hou

This was a challenging and productive program. Within these three weeks we had learned so much. The technology learning session (palmphone, toondoospaces, penpal, 一声通,一件通,一笔通。。。) from Zeng-laoshi and the logical thinking skills I learned from my peers helped me a lot. The first week of the program was designed like a tripod. It started from the teaching theories (approaches and methods in the past century), then the learning process for second language acquisition (how our brain works) and ended with the classroom setting (standards, assessments, the usage of the authentic materials and more). The practicum in the following two weeks confirmed our understanding of the materials we learned in the first week and also enhanced and improved our teaching skills.

I appreciated many things taught by Dr. Tseng. For example: 齐唱/独唱 (group practice/individual practice), teacher scaffolding/student- centered performance, and comprehensible inputs/controlled outputs. Dr. Tseng was a great speaker and a very effective teacher. Dr. Tan’s warm personality and classroom experiences inspired me. She emphasized using culture in the core of our language teaching rather than as a separate aspect, and I plan to adopt this model as my own.

I used to focus more on the learning/teaching results (the achievements, the scores, the outputs…) than the learning/teaching process. As time went on in this program, I came to understand the process as something that is equal in importance to the result. I felt more and more comfortable about the 100% immersion approach when I prepared the third lesson.

I believe everything happens for a good reason. No wireless internet in our hotel rooms made all the teacher participants closer (we all came down to the public gathering area to work for hours and hours). No shuttle bus service to and from the training facility brought me closer with some other teachers (Zeng & Xiaojin laoshi took people back and forth without complaint). Good teamwork is always better than a solo show. My fellow teachers please remember: “love is contagious”.

“Become a lifelong learner. Stay fresh and vibrant by learning something new every day” (Dr. H. Adam and S. A. Johnson). I am glad I still want to learn. I am glad I have place to go to learn. I am glad that I have the opportunity to become a better teacher and a better person each day.

Although it was very intensive, I would RECOMMEND the program for future prospective teacher participants.

Thank you, I-Rong and Jennifer, “老师,你明天要吃什么?”… “I-Rong, 你可以不可以…?” Thank you, girls. You two have also made the program successful.