Meet Tanja. Tanja is one of twenty-five 2014 Teaching Fellows who volunteer with GLN to teach her language and share their culture. See what she tells us about her fellowship… in encouraging others to apply today.
As you hear in the audio below, Tanja admits The first semester was tough timewise. She says, “I spent full days constructing the materials for the class… So lesson planning is a huge part of the teaching process and the learning process.” Off camera (off mic) she now enjoys the fact that she feels comfortable with the process and has a teaching assistant; that’s Suzana in the photo to the right who assists her in explaining the cultural nuances of the language as it intersects with Serbian pronunciations and cultural differences. Suzana is a native speaker who helps to refine the class with her native interpretations.
Sometimes you have to be inventive
Tanja talks about being inventive with posting pictures that she has used for class materials… and how she grabbed some thumb tacks from another class. “So that was an intense moment, but we really needed them… and so we kinda’ stole some, but gave them back at the end of class,” she says about how teachers have to be inventive when your tireless plans do not work out as planned.
Show them the way… Don’t just give them the answer
Tanja says after taking a few GLN workshops with her ‘fellow’ Fellows she’s learned to reconstruct her lessons so it’s not about going over grammar, but finding ways to guide students toward self-discovery. Sometimes it’s not the answer our Fellows give, but how they guide you to figuring out how language works.