Gender's Role in the Classroom- December 2020



A hearty hello to everyone! We hope you are keeping safe, productive and happy during these challenging times. In our newsletter this month, we are delighted to share with you something interesting, something practical and something exciting! With a new year just on the horizon, and many still unable to leave their homes, we are glad that we can offer comprehensive training to equip our graduates. This training enables them to work from home – teaching English or any other language in which they are proficient. For course dates and to register, please go to www.lexica.world/course-dates.


Our December Newsletter

Have you ever wondered why it seems that boys and girls/men and women seem to learn differently? But, do they really? What role does gender play in the classroom? We will explore these questions. Then, to bring our latest newsletter to an exciting conclusion, we wanted to give you a glimpse into some of the exciting things we are planning for the near future here at Lexica.


Our December Newsletter

Have you ever wondered why it seems that boys and girls/men and women seem to learn differently? But, do they really? What role does gender play in the classroom? We will explore these questions. Then, to bring our latest newsletter to an exciting conclusion, we wanted to give you a glimpse into some of the exciting things we are planning for the near future here at Lexica.


Recap from our latest TESOL/Language Instructor Course


Our last online TESOL/Language Instructor Course, held November 30th to December 4, was an outstanding success! We had a fascinating time with a unique and talented group of professionals, many of whom were already seasoned teachers. What struck us about this group was how determined they were to put the methods and principles they learned into immediate practise. By the end of the week, all were raring to go! Here are two reviews from this most recent class. The rest will be posted on our testimonial page at www.lexica.world/testimonials

“What an incredible experience! I highly recommend this course! Upon completion, I gained more than just a TESOL certificate. I’m telling my friends, “If your goal is to teach a language or perhaps to learn a language, the principles and methods taught in this course will make your goals achievable with any language. It was fun, easy to understand, concise, and full of resources and information that will help you get started.” I loved how we, as students, were fully involved in each lesson! We had many opportunities to practice each method and principle. Thus, each of us gained inner confidence and a deeper understanding of how each method works. Thank you very much, Jordan and Ruth! The experience was worth every penny!” -Danielle

“I enjoyed learning the different methods by learning them in Swahili. It was authentic and real and I personally got to experience the different methods. I loved learning about the brain and how it wants to learn. It wasn’t too technical but just enough to understand the process. I was completely engaged throughout the day, each day of the class. That, in itself shows that the methods worked. The breakout rooms and the class interaction was a fantastic way to explore the methods in a comfortable environment. It was neat to see how each day we each got more and more comfortable and confident. We learned a lot from each other as well from the amazing instructors. The homework was a perfect amount. Enough to experiment with the methods without being overwhelming. It was by far the best learning experience secularly that I have ever had.”-Cheri


This month we will unpack yet another gem from John Medina’s breakthrough treatise on the neuroscience behind learning anything. Specifically, the role that gender may play in the classroom and how teachers can use the research that has been gathered on this important subject to optimize the learning process.


With his vast experience in the field of applied neuroscience and years of empirical research to back him up, he makes it clear that the assumption that people are either right brain (analytical), or left brain (creative) learners is a “folk tale.” He says that this is “the equivalent of saying the left side of a luxury liner is responsible for keeping the ship afloat, and the right is responsible for making it move through the water.” That said, the two hemispheres do tend to focus on different aspects of learning. The research shows that generally, the right of side of the brain tends to remember the gist of an experience while the left- hand side tends to focus on the details. In a learning environment, (which produces both good and bad levels of stress) the differences in the two hemispheres of the brain have often resulted in responses that have promoted a stereotypical view of how males and females learn.

Studies have shown that when faced with stress in the classroom females tend activate the left (creative) side of the brain, honing in on the emotional details, while males activate the right side which focuses on the broad picture or gist. Enter the stereotype that “women are more emotional that men.” Medina, however, postulates that this is totally untrue. By engaging their creative side in their approach to a problem, “they perceive their emotional landscape with more data points (that’s the detail) and see it in greater resolution, women may simply have more information to which they are capable of reacting. If men perceived the same number of data points, they might have the same number of reactions.” This difference in approach can have profound implications in the classroom, particularly with younger students. Medina relates a challenge that his son’s third grade teacher faced and how she resolved it. She noticed that the girls in her class were excelling in the language arts, while the boys were markedly pulling ahead in math and science.

She rejected the stereotype that men have a better aptitude for math and science but the results in class seemed to be supporting that conclusion. She perceived that the problem lay in the social participation during class; when given the chance to publicly answer a question, whoever answered first was unbelievably important. The reactions to answers given by both groups tended to fall into two categories: hierarchal for the boys or participatory for the girls. An answer generated a “me too” response from the girls; whereas, the boys, would react to an answer with a “top down” response based on knowledge and aptitude, including a drubbing of anyone who did not make the top tier. This drubbing would extend to the girls. Bewildered, the girls would stop participating and their progress would decline. After meeting with the girls and confirming her observations, the teacher started to teach math and sciences to the girls separately for a time. Within two weeks of doing this, the disparity between the progress of the two groups disappeared and the girls as a group reached roughly the same level as the boys.


What can we learn from this account? When teaching a group, a teacher can try and determine, 1) Which side of the brain has the most influence on the student’s approach to the lesson? 2) Is the student’s gender affecting how he/she is reacting to the cue to participate and engage in the lesson? With the answers to these questions in mind, the teacher can determine whether it would be advantageous for the students to, at least for a time, be separated by gender. In this case, the reduction of distractions from the classroom dynamics may enable the entire class to process the information, progress at the same speed.


Roadmap for Lexica


Keeping our programs fresh and relevant is something we take very seriously here at Lexica. We are constantly researching new methods and ensuring that the current methods are relevant and up-to-date. In fact, in every new course that we teach, we present something fresh and unique! Every effort is made to help our students retain what they learn during our intensive one-week course.



Still, it can be a challenge to remember everything presented. Therefore, we are pleased to offer, free of charge, one seat in each course to a former student who would like to refresh and renew their skills. Let us know if you would like to join us and we will put you on our waiting list. If you can’t wait for your turn, we offer former students the opportunity to take a refresher course at any time for a greatly reduced rate. Just write us at jordan@lexica.world or ruth@lexica.world.



We are also excited to let you know that we are working on a “Members Only” section of our website. This will be designed for alumni to connect, share work opportunities, lesson planning ideas and compare notes -or mindmaps – of their teaching techniques. It will be a fantastic way to stay motivated, up-to-date and keep in touch with each other. Stay tuned for more details!



Annnnd…, in addition to our Instagram account where we share teaching tips, news and lesson ideas, we are also soon launching our own YouTube channel! We will put the spotlight on teaching methods and principles with practical “How To” tutorials pertaining to all things linguistic and Lexical!

So much in store! We hope you enjoyed catching up with us. If you have any friends or acquaintances who could benefit from our training, please pass along our special “friends and family discount” of $75 dollars off the price of our next course. Just key in “friendsandfamily” at checkout and the discount will be applied.


Upcoming Courses!


Would you too like to become thoroughly equipped to teach English or another language? Would you like to become more confident in yourself and realize your latent potential? Are you keenly interested in learning a new foreign language in the fastest way possible? Whatever your reason, do join us soon! In addition to dates on North American time zones, we are excited to bring our course to Japan Time, February 1-5, 2021. For all our course dates and to register please go to www.lexica.world/course-dates.

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