I started teaching French at Birmingham University in 1992 as a Lectrice in the Department of French. I had just qualified as a teacher of French as a Foreign Language and welcomed the chance to apply my -largely theoretical- knowledge. I mainly taught undergraduates who were quite reluctant to talk in the foreign language and came up with all sorts of ideas and trick help them along the way. A couple of years later I started working for CML, experiencing working with older adults this time, who could be staff from the uni or members from the general public.
As I am not someone who enjoys standing in front of the class, talking, I always carefully plan my lessons so that the students do a lot of the talking themselves, often in pair or groups. I believe that students should be active during a language class, using their imagination and having fun. Having said that, there is no point hiding the fact that learning is hard work and a fair amount of vocabulary needs to be acquired before any proficiency can be reached. I try to give my students ideas on how to manage their learning outside the class.
I do a lot less teaching these days unfortunately given other managerial and administrative duties but I have the pleasure of teaching on both or Open-access and MOMD programmes as well as supervise some of our Tandem learners.