Showcase: Ryan Hagglund


In this month’s Showcase, Ryan Hagglund outlines the benefits of his school’s monthly video training and support sessions.


Ryan Hagglund

Regardless of one’s experience, we can always learn from observing others teach and by being observed ourselves. Such opportunities are rare however, once teacher training is completed—even though learning and development are lifelong endeavors. For this reason, MY English School in Higashine, Yamagata, runs monthly training sessions for teachers and staff. Most sessions center on discussion of a video of a class taught by one of the teachers during the previous month.

All teachers and staff view each video before the training session. The involvement of staff is important, as they should know what is happening in the classroom and be involved in discussions on good teaching practices in order to better communicate with current and potential students and parents.

During each session, the teacher whose class was taped highlights what he or she thought went well, followed by some areas and ideas for improvement. The remaining teachers and staff then make similar comments. An atmosphere of mutual trust and support is essential. There is no trainer/trainee relationship: All who teach are videotaped at some point—including the school manager.

Everyone in these training sessions benefits from constructive criticism. They also benefit from seeing what other teachers are doing well in the classroom, which helps increase the spread of effective teaching practices throughout the school. Lastly, these sessions promote an atmosphere of mutual trust and support. As MY English School expands, this style of teacher training will continue to play a major role in ensuring teaching quality and effectiveness.

Ryan Hagglund is the owner and president of MY English School in Higashine, Yamagata. 

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