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course John musing

Get certified with iTDi

Participants working toward a Certificate of Completion will be expected to spend about 20 hours on class work. This includes attending all four classes (live or through recordings), participating in class forum discussions and completing assigned tasks.

In addition to the above requirements, participants working toward a Certificate of Accomplishment will be expected to create a plan for teaching grammar and vocabulary in their specific teaching context. They should expect to spend about 25 hours on coursework.

Here is a comment from one of hundreds of teachers who have experienced learning with John:

"The process of exploration and "seeing again", created by the group, becomes a tool we can take with us and use after the course is over.  It is this new way of seeing which leads to a fundamental change in how we go about reflecting on and exploring our own teaching practices.

As a teacher, I often finish a class and the first thing I do is say to myself, "that was a good class," or "That was terrible."  My initial reaction is judgmental.  But working with John and the other teachers in his courses, I've come to realize that how I react to a class has very little to do with what might have actually happened in a class. Before I can develop as a teacher, I first need to know how to see what I am doing in new and novel ways.  In John's courses, no one teacher has the answers. No one is the holder of special knowledge.  Instead, we learn to ask each other questions to help analyze what happened in a class.

We learn to listen to each other and try on different perspectives.  Each member in the group engages in conversations in order to see each classroom moment from different perspectives.  It is the power of the group and the atmosphere of almost child-like curiosity which changes the way we go about seeing and learning about our own teaching.   Working with John and the other teachers, I am reminded again and again that to be a teacher, I need to first be a learner.  And it in John's course we are always asking the next question, always taking a step in a new direction, and always working with each other to become more aware of how we and our students learn. Kevin Stein.





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iTDi Advanced Course

Rethink Teaching: Vocabulary and Grammar with John F. Fanselow

Transform the way you teach vocabulary & grammar with John F. Fanselow. Examine and rethink current methods and practices. Generate and explore alternatives. Implement changes and track transformation. In this course you'll work closely with John and classmates from around the world to rethink, renew, and transform your teaching.

Live online sessions will be held in the iTDi virtual classroom on 4 consecutive Sundays in April/May 2015.

Live sessions (registered participants only)

  • April 12th – course participants only (60 minutes)
  • April 19th – course participants only (60 minutes)
  • April 26th – course participants only (60 minutes)
  • May 3rd – course participants only (60 minutes)

Time: 13:00 - 14:00 GMT (This is 09:00 in New York and 22:00 in Tokyo).

Enroll in the entire course for only US $59

Course + Evaluation + Certificate of Accomplishment US $89

Questions? Contact support@itdi.pro

If you are unable to join the class without scholarship support from iTDi, please apply using the form here



Breaking Rules

A message from John about the course...

When teachers search for a course to take they are keen to know the goals of the course and what will be done in each session. But I am not able to state the goals of the course nor what will be done in each session because I have not met any of you much less know what you do in your classes or what you hope to change in your classes as a result of participating in my class.

To transform our teaching we need to first understand what we're actually doing in our classrooms. Before the first class I would like each participant to write down two activities you have regularly used in teaching grammar and vocabulary.

When we read these at our first session we can begin to write goals for the course and begin to discover and explore what we will do in each session. In other words, my course will be a joint enterprise in which you and I discuss what you regularly do and ways to change what you regularly do.

I guarantee you that you will discover alternative ways to teach grammar and vocabulary that you had never considered. But I cannot guarantee now what these alternative ways will be until I see what you are presently doing.

This course is a collaborative experience in which I explore with each of you the rules you presently follow—the day-to-day activities you use to teach grammar and vocabulary—and then we will turn the day-to-day activities upside down and inside out.

I cannot say now what goals we will achieve nor what alternative activities you will use after each session. But I can say that your teaching will be transformed as we work together in this course.


John F. Fanselow

John became involved in ESOL by becoming a U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer in Africa. Upon completion of Ph.D. at Columbia University, Teachers College, he joined the faculty. At Teachers College, his main interest was observation and analysis of interactions, both inside and outside of classrooms. "Beyond Rashomon" and "Let's see", two of his seminal articles in the TESOL Quarterly, have been reprinted in many anthologies. "Beyond Rashomon" was the basis of Breaking Rules (Longman, 1987) and "Let's See" was the basis of Contrasting Conversations (Longman, 1992, reprinted 2010). Try the Opposite (SIMUL, 1992, reprinted 2010) grew out of his work with teachers in Japan. He was president of International Pacific College in NZ for 8 years where he introduced recording and analyzing classroom interaction that has not been done in a systematic way in any other tertiary institution in the world.

He has been active professionally, serving as president of TESOL International and president of New York TESOL. John is now an emeritus professor at Columbia University Teacher College, and a visiting professor at Kanda University of International Studies in Tokyo. In 2005, he was presented with the Distinguished Alumni Award from Columbia University, Teachers College. Each year, Teachers College presents 3 to 5 Distinguished Alumni Awards who are selected from the more than 80,000 alumni of the institution.