Teaching English in Jakarta

Anthony taught English in Jakarta from 2006 until 2012 with ILP Panglima Polim, The British Institute and English First Pondok Indah. In 2012 Anthony returned to Sydney, Australia to teach English at CASS Training International College. He has now returned to Jakarta and has kindly given us this interview.

What kind of teaching technique do you think is the most effective way to motivate students’ skill in speaking?

There is no one particular technique that can be applied to every student and to every class. Having said that, irrespective of who I am teaching, the one thing that is common is to find similar interests that the students can relate to and to use their personal experiences as a means of generating conversation that will further enhance their knowledge of English. As a teacher, showing interest in what the students discuss is crucial in this process.

What are the obstacles that you often face while you are teaching English?

Different obstacles arise based on the type of students, their level, their motivation and attitude as well as the dynamics, especially when teaching multilingual and monolingual classes. With this in mind, I’ve had to customise my lessons that will overcome these obstacles. These can include different personality traits where I could be teaching a mix of introvert and extrovert students to a diverse range of pronunciation problems that needs to be addressed. Additionally, students’ different familiarity of English within the level of the class can be quite a hurdle when they learn in unequal speeds.

What do you like about your students?

The students are a great reason why I love teaching and they often bring out the best in me. To have people look at you as a mentor, who can guide them on their development which ultimately plays a part of their future prospects is not only honourable but also rewarding and self-satisfying. It’s a great way to meet new people from different age groups, cultural backgrounds and from all walks of life. Although I am the one guiding them, I have learnt a lot from my students during my time teaching English.

What do you do to stimulate students’ creativity while they’re having an English class?

There isn’t a ‘one size fits all’ approach to sparking students’ imagination. During my teaching experience, I have been exposed to a plethora of resources from different mediums. I have used these resources as well as adjusting them to suit my lessons. At the end of the day, my main objectives are to make my lessons fun, interesting and motivating but also constructive, allowing them to use what they already know as well as using new language that can be related to real-life experiences as much as possible.

Have you had experience in teaching International students? If yes, so how did you feel about it?

Although I’ve taught international students in Indonesia, most of my experience in teaching them was in Australia. They primarily came from Brazil, Colombia, the Czech Republic, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mongolia, Pakistan, Peru, the Slovak Republic, Spain and Thailand. These experiences exposed me to different cultures and etiquette as well as being presented with impromptu challenges. Moreover, I’ve made new friendships through them and with a love for travelling, it has given my a greater insight of where they come from and what their traditions and customs are. As a result, I’ve had invitations from several of these students to visit them.

What brought you to teach English in Indonesia?

I previously lived in Indonesia for about six and a half years. During this time, I grew to love the warmth and hospitality of the people, the diversity of cultures, the climate, the different landscapes, the close friendships that I made and everything else that it had to offer. I moved back to Australia for family reasons but as the saying goes ‘home is where the heart is’ and my heart and mind never left, hence why I have returned and now call Indonesia my home.


Teaching English in Jakarta Series

Read another interview with one of our most popular teachers Joe in the post titled private English teacher in Jakarta.