Ten Commandments And One More Of Language Teaching

I am grateful to John Canning of the University of Brighton (UK) who posted the following on his blog. The source is the Modern Language Journal from 75 years ago. Harry Kurtz of the University of Nebraska came up with these. He was clearly a wise man.

1. Thou shalt make every student recite every day.
2. Thou shalt make thy questions shorter and distribute them more frequently to the unworthy of thy flock.
3. Thou shalt demand written homework for every lesson as an evidence of individual effort.
4. Thou mayest spare thy strength in the marking of these by having them corrected in class, but thou shalt collect them and check them off on the rolls.
5. Thou shalt refrain from personal eloquence in the classroom.
6. Remember that the strained silence of pupils thinking is worth more than volubility, thine or theirs.
7. Thou shalt plan thy hour and mark thy pages beforehand, so that never, no never, shalt thou ask thy sheep on what page they stopped grazing the last time.
8. Thou shalt have thy watch before thee to guide thee in the passing of time and to guard thee from over-stressing one thing at the cost of another. So shalt thou finish the assignment and never have the ignominy of covering less than what was imposed upon the fold.
9. Thou shalt watch thy pupils’ thoughts as reflected in their faces and hurl the thunder of a question where it may be necessary to recall the straying.
10. And last, so shalt thou prosper and discover the best devices in language teaching in the measure that thou wilt insist upon work and get it.
Not sure what the extra one was.

http://www.johncanning.net