ptec Glossary

Our ptec glossary includes terms that we use on our product and services pages, our posts, and in our courses. They reflect our beliefs and values and sometimes, our own ptec usage.

The glossary will continue to expand as we add new posts and new work. Let us know what you think in our Contact Us.

Awareness 

«Only awareness is educable in human beings.» —Caleb Gattegno

See also KASA

Contextualization

Contextualizing language is putting language items into a meaningful and real context rather than being treated as isolated items of language for language manipulation practice only. Contextualizing language tries to give real communicative value to the language that learners meet.

Contextualizing a course, in addition to other things, is to make the content that is being delivered relevant to the learners on that course based on who they teach and why, on the resources that are available, and the learners prior knowledge.

Critical Thinking Skills

In addition to teaching language, raising the learners’ awarenss of learning strategies and skills, moves the learner towards a more autonomous learning experience. Teaching critical thinking skills is a component of learning-centered teaching.

Experiential Learning Cycle  ELC

A specific process of thinking through an experience, used as a tool to reflect on our experiences. It is a means of formulating and excavating learning and teaching beliefs, as a way to plan lessons and courses, and as a way of thinking. See also Reflection

Feedback

Information provided to the teacher or student who is working on a task or has completed a task by others. In our courses feedback is tightly linked to Reflection sessions and is done in conjunction with the ELC and focusing on detailed description rather than judgement. In a sense, for feedback here we use another definition of reflection, namely ‘an image that you see when looking in a mirror or other shiny surface.’

KASA, Knowledge, Attitude, Skill, and Awareness  

Knowledge is about information, the ‘what’ of content. In teaching can relate to Target Language or teaching terminology, child development stages, etc.

Skill is about the technique or process, the ‘how’ of content. In teaching can be about planning a lesson’s goals, grouping students in interactive activities, etc.

Attitude is based on the beliefs, values, understanding and awareness of what is brought to classroom and what is happening there..

Awareness is about the ability to notice and attend to what has gone before and what is happening now.

Originally the term is taken form business training and had only KAS, whereas Awareness was added later and is considered to be the key element in the educational field. Originally the term is taken form business training and had only KAS, whereas Awareness was added later and is considered to be the key element in the educational field. Knowledge is about information, the what of content. Skill is about the technique or process, the how of content. Attitude is based on our beliefs, values, understanding and awareness of what we bring to the context and what is happening within the context itself. Awareness is about the ability to notice and attend to what has gone before and what is happening now.

In our courses and programs we look at Teacher KASA, Mentor KASA, and Trainer KASA, and how they all complement each other, and how mentors can help teachers on various stages of their professional life cycle to improve and enjoy what they are doing.

Learner

We use this word in relation to a Learner on our course, and often it is a teacher who is a learner (on a teacher training course or workshop), or a mentor (on becoming a mentor course); in all cases, however, it is a human being that we talk about, and we look at a learner holistically, not separating the emotional or physical aspects and focusing on purely intellectual; learner’s needs, ideas and feelings are important and can help learning, thus making learner-centeredness an important part of our approach to teaching.

Learning-Centeredness

This is one of our leading principles or moving forces for decision-making in planning and teaching; sometimes it is seen as opposing learner-centeredness as working with perceived needs of a learner; is also used to show the link between learning and teaching, and the belief we share that teaching is subordinate to learning.

Lesson Frameworks

The structure underlying how we approach teaching a particular language skill: listening, speaking, reading and writing. Each framework has certain stages, with their own characteristics, approximate timings, etc.) The frameworks are important for planning lessons, setting measurable student learning objectives, and are especially helpful to see each of the four language skills. We are also looking at how the skills are integrated in real life.

Frameworks we often use include:  ECRIF (speaking), PDP (receptive skills) and PWP (writing).

Reflection

In our courses we focus more on the participant’s skills to reflect on their own and peers’ teaching and planning rather than use the time after the lesson to provide trainer input on what worked and what did not work in the lesson (Reflection sessions as opposed to Feedback sessions). We consistently use Experiential Learning Cycle for structuring this reflection and provide multiple chances to use it. Trainers have more facilitative role and help participants go through the cycle and not skip the stages, learning to articulate teaching and learning beliefs.

Why Guy

This is an imaginary hungry character that we feed with why information! Providing the teachers with an opportunity to learn why an activity or session or assignment is included on the course, so that they are more aware and clear about the underlying choices, reflects our belief that this openness facilitates their learning and, by example, leads them more learner-centered teaching. It is about being  explicit regarding the purpose allowing learners to connect with their own beliefs and values.

The TED Talk by Simon Sinek has one take on the value of knowing why that we find informative.

Why Guy visiting Tana's mother's garden.

Why Guy visiting Tana’s mother’s garden.