Use Mistakes to Your Advantage

by Teacher Anon

I have been teaching on and off for the last 5 years. There are many things I have learned to do and not to do! One thing I have found very affective, is the ability to laugh at yourself. I have made many mistakes while teaching. Either I have not been fully prepared my lesson and forgot materials, taught a grammar point incorrectly or I left a few pieces of my lunch in my teeth! I have had some embarrassing moments in class. I have learned to think on my feet and laugh! Teachers are not perfect and they will not always teach perfect lessons.

I have found my students respond better when I am able to laugh at my mistakes instead of stutter and get flustered in class. One thing I taught my little kindergarteners to say whenever I made a mistake like trip over a cord or forget something “Oh, teacher!” We would laugh together and move one. Laughing would help my students engage. Realizing I am not perfect takes the pressure off teaching.

I remember the first business ESL class I taught to professionals. I was very nervous because I had never taught adults before. The first couple classes were rough. No one seemed to be having a good time and if felt like time moved really slow. I would make little mistakes here and there, but once I started to relax and laugh at my little mistakes, class started to go better. As we started meeting more often, we started to have more fun and laugh! We would play games and had a great time. This class turned out to be one of the best classes I have taught.

Laughing is powerful!

It can change people’s mood. While teaching, it is important to have fun. If I am having fun while I am teaching, more than likely my students will have fun.

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