Chip Gardes

A Statement of Philosophy

The motivation to learn a language comes in many forms.  I believe that learning can be focused and accelerated when students accomplish tasks using the language for functional purposes whose value they recognize.  I have developed a constructivist philosophy of education that I try to implement with a communicative classroom style.  I believe vocabulary learning is the primary skill students need to develop.  Rather than the traditional "presentation, practice, production" of vocabulary and grammar, my lesson plans center of practical communicative activities that emphasize illustration, interaction and induction.  I try to guide, rather than instruct, the students to discover and construct linguistic concepts for themselves.  Traditional grammar lessons are augmented with functional grammar imbedded in dialogs and other language tasks drawn from authentic sources.  My goal is for the students to develop and use progressively more advanced language while building their vocabulary.  In short, I try to create an active and stimulating classroom where the students speak more than I do.

Work History

Work History
Aug 2008 - Aug 2009

Profesor Investigador de Tiempo Completo (Full-time Instructor)

La Universidad de Oriente

During my year at UNO, I taught five of the six levels of English offered at the university.  This was a unique experience because the program did not use any textbook.  The department worked as a team to design all of the materials.  My responsibilities included devising career specific vocabularies for each level and working with our team of teachers to design the grammar materials to be presented at each level.  Additionally, I was part of the team assigned to create a new curriculum for the Marketing and Business Administration degree programs.

Jan 2008 - Jun 2008

Profesor de Asignatura (Adjunct Instructor)

Centro de Lenguas Extranjeros, Universidad del Valle de Atemajac

My classes included 'Busines English' for undergraduate students, Level 13 Professional Development to adults, and "A History of English" for student teachers in the TESOL degree program.  Additionally, I was employed to draft and pilot a new English language placement examination to be given to incoming students.

Jan 2008 - Jun 2008

Docent (Instructor)

Instituto de Comunicacion Internacional de Mexico, AC

My responsibilities included teaching two levels of Business English to Mexican executives of the India-based TATA Group.  The classes were designed to improve their oral communicative ability with their Indian employers.

Sep 2006 - Aug 2007

Full Time Instructor

International Education Center, Shandong University of Science and Technology

This position involved teaching an integrated curriculum of International English to adults of varying lanuage abilities whose professions required they communicate with foreigners for business or governmental reasons.  The students included university professors, industrial scientists and management professionals from the Export-Import Bank of China, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Communications, and the Bureau of Statistics.  Additional responsibilities included designing Business English, Social English, and Professional Presentation English modules to meet specific job related language requirements.