Enhance TESOL teachers’ intercultural communication competence

作者:TESOL in China来源:TESOL总部官微网址:http://www.tefltesol.com.cn

With the development of global economic integration, English has become the official language of many countries. There are more and more researches on English language teaching. The methods of English teaching range from Translation to communication to target-based language teaching, which is popular today. The four language skills in the past have been focused on to the practical application ability of the language now. The ability of English teachers also needs to be improved accordingly with the development of language education. Many articles on second language teaching in the 21st century indicate that it is very important to improve the intercultural communication competence of TESOL or ESL teachers (Yang, 2018, Zhang, 2017). ICC has become a new teaching concept. With such a teaching concept, ESL teachers will have higher requirements for English proficiency. Teachers not only need to know how to speak and wiring in English, but also need to know how to communicate with people from different cultural backgrounds. Teachers need to know not only verbal language but also nonverbal language, such as gestures (Zhang, 2017). Therefore, I think ICC’s requirements on social culture and practical communication skills for my teaching career will be a challenge for me to teach in foreign countries.


First of all, from the perspective of Socio-Cultural Competence, students and I come from different countries with different social and cultural backgrounds and different behavior habits. It is worth considering whether I have sufficient language ability to conduct classroom management and whether students accept the classroom management methods I use in China. For example, in China, I can use Mother Tongue to guide some naughty students back to class. However, due to the lack of teaching experience in foreign countries, I do not have enough ability to choose appropriate languages for students from foreign language countries to conduct classroom management. Although I have a certain understanding of the culture of foreign countries, I do not have enough understanding of their social and cultural exchanges and classroom practice.


Secondly, non-verbal messages require TESOL teachers to have a set of body language and expressive ability to conduct intercultural communication (Yang, 2018). Since I am a teacher who has just participated in TESOL training, although I have certain ability to carry out teaching design and knowledge elaboration, I am still a little nervous in the actual teaching process. As a result, my body language was unnatural and fluent. For example, I would be shy and dare not make eye contact with my classmates, and would stand nervously in a position on the stage and dare not move. It is worth mentioning that in the actual teaching process, good body language can make students feel the teacher's confidence, and the students' liking and participation in the class can be understood through eye contact.

Finally, I also need to consider whether I have combined this new concept in the actual teaching process. What else do I need to do to improve my effective communication with students from other countries’ backgrounds and cultures? I don't have enough resources to develop my ability of intercultural communication professionally. All the above questions are worth to be considered with efforts in the field of intercultural communication and practical language teaching.

In a word, with the progress and development of society, TESOL teachers should not only improve the learning of language knowledge, but also grasp the social culture of different countries, and establish their own body language system to improve their teaching confidence.



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