How to answer the following ESL job interview question: What is your English teaching philosophy?

Answer (an example only!):

Every teacher is a personality and has his or her own English teaching experience, and consequently, English teaching philosophy. Therefore, your answer should focus on your English teaching experience. 

First, discuss your own personality. Tell briefly about yourself professionally. Then explain why you decided to become an English teacher. In addition, you should explain who influenced you as an English teacher most of all and what aspects of teaching English you consider the most important. You can briefly discuss a few linguistic theories of second language acquisition and explain who had the most profound impact on you as an English teacher. You can mention, for example, Noam Chomsky, Geoffrey Leech and Stephen Krashen. Perhaps you could express your opinion about language learning and language acquisition and explain differences between them. Do your students learn ESL or EFL or do they acquire it? You could probably add that a second language acquisition requires meaningful interaction and your students are concerned not only with the form of their utterances but also with the messages that they convey to the recipients. You should also consider what aims of a second language teaching and learning are. Most foreign language instructors and researchers claim that the aim of learning a foreign language is communication, either spoken or written. You should also discuss your role in the language classroom: explain what you teach and how you teach. In addition you can tell how you prepare your teaching materials and lesson plans.

As you probably know, students learn a foreign language better, if they are motivated to learn. Therefore, it is important for you to show that you are the teacher who knows how to motivate your students. Here are a few aspects to consider.

First of all, it is important to teach students how to study. Most students do not know how to learn vocabulary, how to develop their listening skills, and how to develop their thinking skills in English. A few useful tips might increase your students’ knowledge and motivation. Second, your students should understand that acquiring a foreign language means that students pick up the language practical skills that they need for communication purposes. Students should not try to memorize randomly grammar rules, syntactical structures and phrases. Language is a way of learning about the world and it is most effectively acquired in the meaningful context. Meaningful contexts stimulate students to think and learn about the world through the use of the target language: students learn effectively if they try to classify, contrast and compare certain facts and solve problems in the classroom. Third, you should explain which English language teaching methods you use with certain groups of children - based on their interests, age, class size, and course requirements. Also, you should explain how you motivate your students by using various strategies, such as learner-centered activities, informal assessment and cooperative learning. 

Finally, you should mention that an effective teacher should contribute to their school not only through teaching but also through community service, administrative responsibilities and research activities. 

You should summarize your statement by telling how you relate teaching to education and how you share your teaching experiences with other teachers and with your students’ parents. 

English Teaching Philosophy Example...

Personal Statement Example...

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