Very early in my teaching career I noticed some of my classes felt very different from others. I was confused because I wasn’t teaching any differently but some classes were really making great progress. It was so nice to watch them do well. However, others weren’t doing so well. What is the secret formulat to success?
Students tend to have a habit of comparing themselves to other students. I guess it’s natural to compare but ultimately it just demoralises the student, who forgets that the goal is to learn, because that student thinks the goal is the be the best at English. That’s not the goal at all. As Teachers we discourage comparing but that’s exactly what I did to my students? Was I doing the wrong thing? I don’t think so. I was simply noticing a difference but there had to be a reason for that distinction in progress.
In the following weeks, I really scrutinised the classes. I had a great rapport with both groups. They all enjoyed the classes and coming together every week, and enjoyed the social aspect of the lessons. But why was one group not progressing as fast as the other one? Then it hit me slowly. First, one student said “oh, I forgot my homework”. Then, I saw another hadn’t finished the exercises. There was one that attended one lesson in every 3, and most of them were late to every class. These two groups were the same level but by the end of the year only one had gracefully progressed through the course and level and the other group had been dragged through the course content and had gaps in their knowledge.
Then I realised that there is a formula that all of these students that were making good progress were following. We can all recognise a good student, but what makes a good student? What is the magic formula? I’m going to tell you: chapa, or more specifically: C.H.A.P.A. It’s something invisible that you can see and oddly enough “chapa” is Spanish for badge. I think it is appropriate, actually, because a badge is something you wear for everyone to see and every one can see straight away if you are a dedicated excellent student.
C.H.A.P.A stands for: Classwork; Homework; Attendance; Punctuality and Attitude. Every single element is totally essential and being naturally good at a single one does not compensate for any of the others. If you are always on time to every lesson that doesn’t mean you can just not do the homework because so and so doesn’t. You need to consistently do your best at every aspect otherwise you are running the risk of wasting your time. You must be dedicated to success in all five areas. One is not more important than the other, nor is one less important than any other. They weigh absolutely the same.
What is the secret formulat to success? Next time you are having your class, in school, face to face or otherwise, show your C.H.A.P.A. Here at UKCE we want to see your C.H.A.P.A. I promise in one month you will be such a success, you’ll message the school thanking us for telling you this simple secret for success! Happy learning!