Category Archives: MA-TESL

An oldie AND goodie

After college, I chose the sally path. I was too scared and lazy to find a job, so I went to grad school. I have two undergrad degrees, one in Spanish and one in Scandinavian Studies, and my plan was to tie the two together with a Master of Arts in Teaching English as a Second Language. Hilarity ensued.
When I was in grad school, I was obligated to write in a blog at least twice a week and leave 3 comments on each of 3 other blogs. One of the weekly entries was to be about our readings, and one was to be a reaction to the class period. Naturally, I fought obligation with silliness. I received grades on some borderline content (like when I taught my foreign classmates what an asshat is) but all in all I think it was a damn fine combination of funny and smart. Enjoy one of my favorite posts.

Even though we are all in school to become teachers, this program teaches us much more than simply methods of education. There are always delicious little snippets of information which can be used in our daily lives. MCM, for examples, tells us that most days, we listen roughly twice as much as we speak, and almost five times as much as we write! Interestingly enough, this could be potent fodder for fights with that special someone. Take the following dialogue as an example:

Wife: I told you last week we were going to spend today finding out how many shoes I have that match my purses! You never listen! I hate you! You’re sleeping on the couch!

Husband: Well, my beautiful wife, according to Marianne Celce-Murcia, we listen TWICE as much as we speak. Why, today alone I’ve engaged in bi-directional listening 17 times, and autodirectional listening this morning when I was asking myself what I wanted for breakfast! I listen to you five times more than I speak to you! Doesn’t that count for anything?

Wife: I’m sorry, you’re so brilliant and handsome. I love you.

See what happened there? I totally defused a potentially hostile situation just by using information I acquired during my education.

There were a few questions I had during the reading though. Is reading considered unidirectional or autodirectional? Is autodirectional listening considered a constant? As in, am I CONSTANTLY engaged in autodirectional listening, and can I be engaged in bidirectional listening (or a conversation) and autodirectional listening simultaneously? Or do we switch from one to the other? I will have to watch for this.

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Posted by on September 7, 2012 in ESL, grad school, MA-TESL, Mankato, TESL