Thomas: In this interview, David Deubelbeiss, author of the innovative, “Teach | Learn”, will respond to a 5W interview format, namely Who, What, Where, When, Why. In this way, we hope to cover the information that will make you, the reader, the teacher, the learner, more comfortable with David, the coursebook writer. Without further preamble on my part, off we go.
David Deubelbeiss. TESOL teacher trainer and professor. Presently in Canada but just finished a 5 year stint in Korea. Shares resources and ideas on EFL Classroom 2.0 and his blog. Runner, writer, reader, human being. Espouses the simple philosophy of life long learning – “When one teaches, two learn”
SCC or Student Created Content. This is the approach, a belief that the curriculum should be that language from the learners. It espouses the point of view that the student is a participant, a social participant in their own learning and creation. Constructivist in approach, students create a product and from that, practice language. SCC is a way of guaranteeing that there will be ZPD and student’s won’t become, as so often is the case, “bewildered” in the language classroom.
Get it here and find out more on my blog. The coursebook also has a voicethread where students can speak and practice the lesson target language. Also, a wiki where teachers can download individual lessons and then edit them. The text book joins the read / write generation!
Now. Right now. When your classes need students to get involved and take an active part in their learning. Also, “now” because of recent developments in print technology and sharing which beckon the possibility that a self-published author can reach an audience and be successful without the large infrastructure of traditional publishing.
Because I can. Why not. I mean that. I really think that someone has to lead the way. I have the experience and thought to myself, “Do I need the compromises, weight, filter, the profit grubbing?” “Do I really need all that, now with the power of community and teachers being able to realize that they do have choice and don’t just have to buy another stack of “Pearson, Longman, Oxford, Cambridge ….”.
I wrote this book partly after reading something by many big wigs of ELT and publishing, bantering on about how you had to “pay your dues” and “work your way up” and “learn the craft” . I really disagreed. My book is my rebuttal.
However, I also wanted a book that would have a very rigid teacher delivery sequence. For the benefit of less experienced teachers (and there are so many in our biz). Also, so that teachers could focus on their own development as teachers and not just hewers of wood (delivering content/exercises etc…). With a set delivery method, teachers could focus on student needs, monitoring and also decrease the power imbalance that is so evident in many classes and which affects language acquisition rates.
For myself, don’t really know. But I do know that I want to continue down this road of doing my own thing. Fits me for the moment.
I do see that this kind of book will be the norm as technology advances and allows us to market and find data / books in a “smart” way. Blended learning, like this book with its urls in the text, will be the norm. I also think that we will move towards open source alternatives now that the “wikipedia” generation is moving to the fore. Teachers will write their own textbooks – even may I dare say, students! And that’s what this book is all about – empowering students. Ecrasez l’infame!
Ladies and gentlemen, in Part 3 of this unique coursebook review format, I’ll be weighing in with my comments on Teach | Learn. Having reviewed it thoroughly, I will be in a position to highlight its strengths, comment on its areas where a second look might be in order, and make some recommendations for you, the reader, the teacher, the learner.
Au revoir mon ami, good night my friend(s),