Tuesday, November 6, 2012

To teach is to learn twice

A random “ah-ha” moment I thought I’d share…

You know the saying, “To teach is to learn twice.” Well, that came into full effect today. Call me dumb, but I didn’t really understand how we elected a new president until yesterday. Sure I’ve heard of the Electoral vote, and the president needs 270 electoral votes to win, but honestly, I didn’t really know what that meant in its entirety.

On Tuesdays and Thursdays, I teach English to a group of teachers at my school, we call it “The Teachers Class.” I always try to teach them things involving current events. This usually consists of me taking an article from CNN and then slicing and dicing it to a paragraph or two, creating a handout with key words and discussion questions. (The main goal of this class is so that teachers have a place to practice speaking in English with me and other teachers). With the election taking place on a Tuesday I thought it was the perfect “current event.”

So, I did some research, watched a few videos and educated myself in great detail about all things election night. It was important that I FULLY understand because I had to be able to break down this confusing process to a very elementary level of understanding, thus enabling me to gain a really strong understanding.

And good thing I did! The questions these teacher’s were asking me were tough and had I not researched so thoroughly I would have been embarrassed. Korean’s are very politically educated and even the students knew that November 6th was Election Day in the US, and they knew the names of the candidates! I bet you didn’t know that Korea is having their own presidential election next month and one of the candidates is a woman, the daughter of a former president! I really enjoy teaching the teachers because I learn so much about Korean culture, it’s definitely a win-win situation!

So, if you ever want to check yourself with how well you know and understand something, try teaching it to someone else. If you want to know whether or not you have mastered something, try teaching it to someone who is learning English as a second language :)
The worksheet I created for class