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Larry Ferlazzo's Blog

  • newMy New Radio Program: “How Can Administrators Help Support an Engaging Curriculum in the Classroom?”
    My new BAM! Radio program is on How Can Administrators Help Support an Engaging Curriculum in the Classroom? Kelly Young (who I consider to be my primary mentor) and Anne Reeves are my guests in this nine-minute podcast.
    - 3 hours ago, 24 Apr 14, 4:53am -
  • newAnother Big Surprise: Reflection Helps Learning
    Hot on the heels of Another Shocker – NOT! Students Respond Better To Support Than Threats, yet another study has been released finding something that has been obvious to teachers for years — reflecting on a learning experience enhances it. … C…
    - 8 hours ago, 23 Apr 14, 11:37pm -
  • newGoogle Street View Adds “Go Back In Time” Feature Today
    There are a number of sites out there that let you click on a location in Google Street View and then show you historical images of that same site going back many, many years. And you can access the best … Continue reading →
    - 9 hours ago, 23 Apr 14, 11:18pm -
  • newIt’s “National Park Week” – Here Are Some Resources
    This week is National Park Week here in the United States. You might want to check-out The Best Sites For Learning About Yosemite & Other U.S. National Parks. Explore more visuals like this one on the web’s largest information design … Continue r…
    - 19 hours ago, 23 Apr 14, 12:48pm -
  • newThree Final Earth Day Links
    Here are new additions to The Best Earth Day Sites: Your Earth Day Guide to Saving the World is from The Atlantic. Earth Day 2014 is a photo gallery from The Boston Globe. Let’s Celebrate Earth Day with Some Gorgeous … Continue reading →
    - 19 hours ago, 23 Apr 14, 12:43pm -
  • newNY Times Creates New Data Journalism Site — “Upshot”
    I’ve previously written a review of two new “data-journalism” sites — see “FiveThirtyEight” & “Vox.com” Are Two New Free Online News Sites — Here’s What I Think Of Them. Today, a similar new online publication jumped into the fray…
    - 23 hours ago, 23 Apr 14, 9:24am -
  • Another Shocker – NOT! Students Respond Better To Support Than Threats
    Yet another study has found that threats of punishment is not a very effective motivating tactic. You can read a summary of this new study at Science Daily, Teachers’ scare tactics may lead to lower exam scores. And if you … Continue reading →
    - 2 days ago, 22 Apr 14, 1:13pm -
  • ‘Differentiation Is More Than A Set Of Strategies’
    ‘Differentiation Is More Than A Set Of Strategies’ is Part Two of my Education Week series on differentiated instruction. Today’s post features a response from Kimberly Kappler Hewitt and a number of suggestions from readers. Here’s an excerp…
    - 2 days ago, 22 Apr 14, 9:41am -
  • Video: “Here’s How To Greet People Around The World”
    I’m adding this video from Business Insider to The Best Sites For Learning About The World’s Different Cultures:
    - 2 days ago, 21 Apr 14, 8:47pm -

Free Technology for Teachers

  • newOnline 3D Models of Molecules
    Canvas Mol is a website that provides 3D, interactive, rotating models of simple and complex molecules. There are more than fifty models of relatively common molecules like glucose, fructose, and morphine. Each model can be altered to show or not sh…
    - 50 mins ago, 24 Apr 14, 7:13am -
  • newThe Mathematics of Rock Climbing
    The Math of Rock Climbing is a neat video that could be used to incorporate a mathematics lesson into a physical education class. The high school in my district has a ropes course that the students use during physical education classes. If your scho…
    - 55 mins ago, 24 Apr 14, 7:08am -
  • newGo Social Studies Go - A Good Alternative to Social Studies Textbooks
    Go Social Studies Go is a nice site developed by Kenneth Udhe, a social studies teacher in Michigan, for his students and the world. Go Social Studies Go is essentially a series of multimedia books about common social studies topics. The site is div…
    - 1 hour ago, 24 Apr 14, 7:01am -
  • newFun With Art - The Getty Games
    Getty Games is a nice collection of art-based games produced by The Getty Museum for younger students to enjoy. There are four categories of games, each offering a subset of games. Getty Games also offers directions for a selection of offline ac…
    - 1 hour ago, 24 Apr 14, 6:49am -
  • newNow You Can "Go Back in Time" In Street View
    For years now we've been able to look at historical imagery in Google Earth by using the time slider. Now a similar feature is available in Google Maps. As announced on the Google LatLong blog, now when you're viewing an image in Street View you may…
    - 1 hour ago, 24 Apr 14, 6:36am -
  • Free Webinar - Five Fun Uses of Comics In the Classroom
    Back in January and February I conducted a couple of free webinars about digital storytelling with comics. Storyboard That has offered to sponsor a new webinar. In this next webinar hosted by StoryboardThat.com and FreeTech4Teachers.com we'll take a…
    - 1 day ago, 23 Apr 14, 4:14am -
  • EverySlide - Share Your Slides and Run Polls At the Same Time
    EverySlide is a free (for educators and students) service that allows you to share your slides directly to the iPads, laptops, Chromebooks, and Android devices used by members of your audience. As you move through your shared slides you can pop-up a…
    - 2 days ago, 22 Apr 14, 4:34am -
  • The Dirt on Dirt - An Earth Day Lesson for Pre-K through First Grade Students
    Tomorrow is Earth Day. Last week I shared 14 Earth Day-related resources. That list is comprised of resources for middle school and high school setting. If you want resources for elementary school students, take a look at the offerings from PBS Learn…
    - 2 days ago, 22 Apr 14, 4:02am -
  • Teach Students About Architecture and Building With This Free Guide from the Smithsonian
    The Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage has some neat resources for teachers and students. One of the resources that I've recently downloaded is the Masters of the Building Arts Activity Guide.The Masters of the Building Arts Activ…
    - 2 days ago, 22 Apr 14, 3:33am -

ESL About.com

  • Give these gap fills a try
    If you are an intermediate to advanced level learner, you'll find these two vocabulary gap fill quizzes challenging. The first focuses what goes into successful parenting. The next provides a short situation in which a squatter helps the police. Give…
    - 2 days ago, 21 Apr 14, 8:04pm -
  • Speaking English with Your Doctor or Patient
    If you are in the medical profession, or if you live in an English speaking country, you'll need to communicate effectively and understand specific questions about your / your patient's health. These dialogues provide practice conversations and key v…
    - 5 days ago, 19 Apr 14, 7:05pm -
  • Writing Your First Sentences
    This lesson will help you write your very first sentences. Follow each step reading the description and you will learn how to write three different types of sentences. For example:Mary is tall. Mary is a student. Mary is a tall student.This is…
    - 6 days ago, 17 Apr 14, 10:11pm -
  • Teaching Beginners Parts of Speech
    Learning parts of speech can be a real challenge for beginners. However, learning to recognize just four - noun / verb / adjective / adverb - will greatly help them develop a feeling for the structure of English. Use this parts of speech lesson to as…
    - 9 days ago, 14 Apr 14, 8:46pm -
  • Having the Final Word
    Sometimes you might have to insist on your point of view. Someone who has the final word ends the conversation forcefully:I said we're going to finish the project. That's my final word!Learn how to have the final word using phrases and structur…
    - 11 days ago, 12 Apr 14, 8:26pm -
  • How to Guides on Teaching the Tenses
    One of the main tasks in any grammar class is teaching tenses. For many students, the tenses are especially challenging because their native language may lack a focus on the time aspect of tenses that is so prevalent in English. These guides have bee…
    - 15 days ago, 9 Apr 14, 6:11pm -
  • Challenge Yourself with Gap Fills
    Here are two new gap fills that will challenge any upper level student. First, we have a story about a man who decides to buy a boat. It's packed full of unique vocabulary and sure to be a challenge. Next, learn 15 new phrasal verbs with this gap fil…
    - 19 days ago, 4 Apr 14, 8:13pm -
  • Will or Going to - A Difficult Choice
    The choice between will or going to for the future is always hard. Make sure to study the rules to will and going to and then check your understanding with this future forms quiz. Teachers can use this future with going to and will lesson plan, as we…
    - 20 days ago, 3 Apr 14, 10:19pm -
  • Play Bingo in Class to Help Learn Past Forms
    Here are a number of suggestions on how you can use bingo cards to practice past irregular forms in class. There are six bingo cards ready to print out, or you can use the irregular verb forms list to come up with your own, or encourage students to c…
    - 24 days ago, 31 Mar 14, 7:51pm -

ESL Basics

  • Classes with Andrea Coming Soon!
    Online Classes Start on Thursday! I am SO excited to announce that after months of hard work and preparation, we will be launching weekly classes, starting this Thursday! I will be teaching these high-quality, university-level classes that you can wa…
    - 2 days ago, 22 Apr 14, 12:28am -
  • What does it mean to giggle? (Video)
    What does it mean to giggle? The dictionary defines the verb giggle as… laugh lightly in a nervous, affected, or silly manner. In this video I use the word “cute” to describe my son giggling. No matter how you define the word, it is easier to s…
    - 12 days ago, 12 Apr 14, 10:42am -
  • Who Knew Madonna Could Teach English?
    Today’s post joins English language learning with a passion for music. It’s written by our friend Alice Morell, creator of MyMusicBox.org. It’s titled “Who Knew Madonna Could Teach English?” because Alice uses 3 Madonna songs to make an Eng…
    - 14 days ago, 10 Apr 14, 1:54am -
  • How to Write an Effective Topic Sentence
    How to Write an Effective Topic Sentence When you write an academic paragraph in English, you should probably start by writing the topic sentence. The topic sentence is essentially a 1-sentence summary of the paragraph. It clearly outlines the main i…
    - 16 days ago, 8 Apr 14, 2:06am -
  • English Texting Abbreviations and Acronyms
    Is texting ruining your English? According to a poll taken by Kaplan International, 63% of English language learners don’t think so. The good news is that world-renowned linguist David Crystal doesn’t think it’s had a negative effect on languag…
    - 22 days ago, 2 Apr 14, 4:03am -
  • When To Use Continuous Verbs
    You probably already know that continuous verbs are be + -ing verbs. am typingare walkingis singingwas yellingwere gallopingwill be happening But do you know when to use continuous verbs?  Here are 5 simple rules for when to use the continuous (prog…
    - 27 days ago, 28 Mar 14, 7:24pm -
  • How To Pronounce Countries In English
    How To Pronounce Countries In English Learn how to pronounce countries in English… every country! Here is a list of world countries, along with an audio recording I put together of the American English pronunciation of each country. Every language…
    - 29 days ago, 26 Mar 14, 12:32pm -
  • Useful Tools for Learning English
    Check out these tools for learning English… When Kaplan International asked over 500 ESL teachers about tools they used to teach English, 86% said that they have used music for lessons in their classrooms. I am definitely part of the 86%! Music is…
    - 30 days ago, 24 Mar 14, 8:48pm -
  • Audio Lesson: How to Brainstorm Effectively
    How to Brainstorm Effectively Today is a writing lesson focused on the process of brainstorming. The best place to start when you want to write is in the pre-writing phase called brainstorming. When I brainstorm, I use three techniques: Free Writing…
    - 34 days ago, 20 Mar 14, 8:09pm -
Feel the Power of Big, Easy Reading at BeeOasis.com

Teach English Online

  • Want to Teach Online? Here Are Four Platforms that You Can Use
    In my last post, I talked about how to use Google Hangouts on Air to teach live language lessons to an unlimited amount of people. Since then, I have received a lot of questions from people in my community about what platform is best to use when tea…
    - 9 days ago, 14 Apr 14, 11:53pm -
  • Using Google Hangouts on Air for Teaching English
    I had my first experience using Google Hangouts on Air this week. I’m happy to say that it was successful both in terms of the presentation I gave and the technical side of things. I did A LOT of research and testing to ensure that everything went…
    - 27 days ago, 28 Mar 14, 11:26am -
  • Get Sold (Guest Post by Drew Badger from EnglishAnyone.com)
    When talking with Drew Badger, it is soon obvious just how knowledgeable he is about marketing. He has built a successful online course that solves a big problem for English learners: becoming conversationally fluent. He also has a very successful Yo…
    - 83 days ago, 30 Jan 14, 9:53pm -
  • What I Achieved in 2013, Projects in 2014, the Baby Effect, and Bill Gates
    First of all, Happy (belated) New Year to all my wonderful readers! I receive many emails from fellow teachers each day, and love hearing about your situation, what you want to achieve, and your successes. Keep the emails coming! 2013 was a great yea…
    - 96 days ago, 17 Jan 14, 10:55pm -
  • When a Language Teacher Becomes a Language Coach
    “The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.” – William Arthur Ward. One of my students recently passed her IELTS exam on the first attempt. When she first came to me, sh…
    - 11 Dec 13, 12:31am -
  • Using Email to Bridge the Gap Between Offline and Online and to Grow a Following
    I’ve mentioned many times how important it is to have an email list if you teach online or have a website. But, what if you don’t teach online? Well, if you currently teach in a traditional setting, you should seriously consider getting in on the…
    - 12 Nov 13, 7:07am -
  • Mau Buchler of Tripppin Drops In to Give Advice on Teaching Online
    We love to feature people who are making a mark in the online world, and today I have another guest vlog from Mau Buchler. Mau recently launched his unique English learning platform Tripppin. To give you a taste of what this is like, take a look at t…
    - 31 Oct 13, 12:06am -
  • Online Learning and Group Lessons (Guest Vlog by Jason R Levine)
    Today we welcome our second guest poster to the blog: Jason R Levine. Jason and I have been collaborating on a few things recently, and I really wanted him to share his knowledge of online teaching here at TeachingESLOnline. So, below you’ll find a…
    - 10 Oct 13, 7:44am -
  • Why Connecting With Others Brings You More Students and Makes You a Better Teacher
    One piece of advice that I give to teachers starting out in this online world of teaching is to create true connections with English learners, students, and fellow teachers. My approach to reaching out and connecting with others online has changed dr…
    - 1 Oct 13, 10:54am -

Scott Thornbury Blog

  • A new beginning
    As promised, blogging resumes shortly… but in a new site and with a new format. You can find the new blog here: it’s called The (De-) Fossilization Diaries, and charts the attempts I’m making to improve my faltering Spanish. Hope to see you the…
    - 23 Aug 13, 5:31pm -
  • The End
    So this is it, folks: I’m closing down the blog for the summer… and for good. After 3 years, 150 posts, nearly 7000 comments, and innumerable hits, visits, views, however you want to describe and count them, plus one e-book spin-off (but no sign…
    - 9 Jun 13, 3:00pm -
  • V is for Vocabulary teaching
    A teacher educator in Norway reports on how she has used ideas from my book How to Teach Vocabulary (2002) on an in-service course for local primary and lower secondary school teachers. Mona Flognfeldt writes: ‘I have shared with my students a lot…
    - 2 Jun 13, 3:00pm -
  • G is for Gesture
    A couple of weeks ago the University of Barcelona hosted a week-long course on Gesture and SLA, run by Dr Marianne Gullberg, Professor of Psycholinguistics at Lund University in Sweden. Marianne has to be one of the leading experts on gesture and lan…
    - 26 May 13, 3:00pm -
  • R is for Repetition (again)
    I do not know which to prefer, The beauty of inflections Or the beauty of innuendos, The blackbird whistling Or just after. Wallace Stevens, ‘Thirteen ways of looking at a blackbird’. It’s spring and the male blackbirds are in full throat. I wa…
    - 19 May 13, 3:00pm -
  • C is for (COCA) Corpus
    A recent ELT Chat on using corpora suggested that what might be helpful for teachers coming to online corpora (such as COCA- the Corpus of Contemporary American English) for the first time would be some kind of screencast, demonstrating some of the m…
    - 12 May 13, 3:00pm -
  • T is for Teacher Knowledge
    What you do need to know in order to be able to teach? The question concerns not only teachers, but also teacher educators and methodology writers, since the way we answer it impacts on the design of training programs and their related materials. Do…
    - 5 May 13, 3:00pm -
  • T is for Turning point
    This was written by a young American woman, visiting Europe for the first time, and speaking the German she had learned at school. It describes an experience many second language speakers will attest to: the turning point – that moment when suddenl…
    - 28 Apr 13, 3:00pm -
  • W is for Wondering
    Three excellent presentations at IATEFL this year, each of which referenced Dogme, got me wondering. The first, Conversation-driven or dialogic methodology? ELT Classroom talk, was given by Dr Phil Chappell, from Macquarie University in NSW. Phil sta…
    - 21 Apr 13, 3:00pm -

Oxford University Press (ELT Blog)

Heads Up English

  • Easter
    Easter celebrates the death and resurrection of Jesus. Although it falls on a Sunday, the holiday follows the phases of the moon in the lunar calendar. Hence the actual date changes from year to year. Easter can be celebrated as early as March 22, an…
    - 28 days ago, 26 Mar 14, 10:42pm -
  • St. Patrick's Day
    What does St. Patrick's Day mean to you? For many, it means being honorary Irish for a day. It means a large parade with marching bands, floats, and folk dressed in green top hats and tails. It means green beer, and a lot of it. In Chicago, the river…
    - 42 days ago, 12 Mar 14, 9:53pm -
  • When to Tie the Knot
    Around the world, young people have waited longer and longer to get married. There are many reasons, such as careers, personal goals, and a fear of divorce. Many people also now see marriage as the last step in becoming an adult, whereas previous gen…
    - 55 days ago, 27 Feb 14, 9:03pm -
  • Happiness is... Family?!
    What makes teens and twenty-somethings happy? According to a survey, spending time with family made people in this age group the most happy. Time with friends came in second place, and time with a boyfriend or girlfriend came in third place. Almost n…
    - 57 days ago, 26 Feb 14, 6:54am -
  • Men, Women, and Household Chores
    Men make more housework for women. He may mow the lawn, shovel snow, or fix things around the house. However, he still adds seven hours per week to the load of chores. The information comes from recent research between 1996 and 2005. During this peri…
    - 60 days ago, 23 Feb 14, 7:31am -
  • Men are Chatterboxes too!
    Who do you think speaks more, men or women? Many people believe that women are more talkative. There are many jokes about how much, and what, women talk about. But new research which may be surprising shows that both men and women speak more or less…
    - 74 days ago, 9 Feb 14, 8:02am -

UsingEnglish.com

  • newAcademic English- British and American English [PDF]
    New Entry: 'Academic English- British and American English' has just been added to the Lesson Plans area of UsingEnglish.com.
    - 7 hours ago, 24 Apr 14, 12:51am -
  • FCE (First Certificate in English) Listening- Spotting Answers [PDF]
    New Entry: 'FCE (First Certificate in English) Listening- Spotting Answers' has just been added to the Lesson Plans area of UsingEnglish.com.
    - 3 days ago, 20 Apr 14, 10:46pm -
  • Turf out
    New Entry: 'Turf out' has just been added to the Phrasal Verbs area of UsingEnglish.com.
    - 6 days ago, 18 Apr 14, 5:42pm -
  • Kype
    New Entry: 'Kype' has just been added to the Slang area of UsingEnglish.com. This entry is only available in our members' area.
    - 7 days ago, 17 Apr 14, 6:12pm -
  • OTL
    New Entry: 'OTL' has just been added to the Chatlish area of UsingEnglish.com. This entry is only available in our members' area.
    - 7 days ago, 17 Apr 14, 6:11pm -
  • Jockey into
    New Entry: 'Jockey into' has just been added to the Phrasal Verbs area of UsingEnglish.com.
    - 7 days ago, 17 Apr 14, 6:10pm -

The Everyday Language Learner

  • How Much Vocabulary Is Enough?
    Today’s guest post comes from Jeffery Nelson, the creator of a great new blog called Living Bilingual.  After you enjoy the article stop by and visit. ———- Language skills are hard to measure. There is an innate subjectivity in analyzing a l…
    - 13 Aug 13, 12:27pm -
  • The Number One Rule For Learning A Foreign Language
    Today I am excited to share another great guest post from a regular EDLL reader, Arabic expert and language lover Saqib Hussain.  You can find out more about Saqib and about Arabic at  Arabic Studio.  For now, enjoy the post! ————- OK, so…
    - 26 Jul 13, 5:06am -
  • The Everyday Language Learner Interview Series: Jana Fadness
    I have been an admirer of Jana Fadness for a number of years now and so was excited to be able to interview her a few weeks back.  Her blog, Adventures of the Directionally Challenged shares here experiences as a language learner, a traveler and a t…
    - 4 Jul 13, 5:11am -
  • How to Instantly Improve Your Vocabulary Recall in just 5 Minutes
    Perhaps you are familiar with Tim Ferris’ “4 Hour” series of books.  In today’s guest post, Allan Ngo of Money in Mandrin unpacks a few lessons he took away from The 4 Hour Chef.  Enjoy! RIIIIIIIIIIIIING!!!!!!!! Your alarm clock blares! POW…
    - 24 Jun 13, 11:16pm -
  • The Most Important Day Of Your Language Learning Journey
    Today’s guest post is from Noel van Vliet, the writer behind SmartLanguageLearner.com.  It was certainly a timely post for me as I’ve been struggling amidst part time jobs and being back in the states to stay connected with learning Turkish an…
    - 10 Jun 13, 8:20pm -
  • Get on the Bus and Stay On
    It’s not everyday that I get a postcard with a picture of an elephant trying to get on a double decker bus, but when I do, I like to share about it. The picture itself is so great – an apt metaphor for life as we know it. Much of what we do is fi…
    - 31 May 13, 5:11am -

Langwitches

  • You Have 1 Second to Hook a Potential Reader
    If you are blogging with your students, you have been exposed to them. You have been exposed to hundreds of unimaginative, cloned, generic and uninspiring BLOG TITLES. When opening your RSS reader that contains the latest blog posts of your students,…
    - 1 day ago, 23 Apr 14, 6:45am -
  • NASA’s Global Selfie Crowdsourced on Earth Day
    Today, April 22, 2014, NASA is crowdsourcing Global Selfies. NASA astronauts brought home the first ever images of the whole planet from space. Now NASA satellites capture new images of Earth every second. For Earth Day we are trying to create an ima…
    - 1 day ago, 23 Apr 14, 2:53am -
  • The Story Behind Langwitches
    I get asked all the time about the name of my blog: Langwitches. So here is the story… It’s a cultural thing… Some cultures see “witches” as a normal part of human history and playing an ongoing role in literature throughout different time…
    - 2 days ago, 22 Apr 14, 12:54am -
  • Kids React To… And Student Led Conferences
    I might be (very)  late to the party around the popular YouTube Channel from the Fine Brothers and their series of Kids React, but I just made a connection to student blogfolios and student led conferences. In the beginning of  each episode of Kids…
    - 2 days ago, 21 Apr 14, 10:55pm -
  • Evaluating iPad Apps
    I wanted to take a closer look at the iPad Evaluation I previously blogged about in Evaluating Apps with Transformative Use in Mind. The section of Content and Components deserved a closer look and explanation. You can  download the PDF file of the…
    - 5 days ago, 19 Apr 14, 12:42am -
  • Poetry on Record
    Inspired by Poetry, Performance & Taylor Mali and Beyond…, 8th grade Humanities teacher Shannon Hancock coached her students to create their own original “Mali Poem”and record a visual and vocal performance. I joined the class to give a brief…
    - 5 days ago, 18 Apr 14, 9:42pm -

EFL Classroom 2.0

  • Why Do I Blog?
    “I knew that I had a facility with words and a power of facing unpleasant facts, and I felt that this created a sort of private world in which I could get my own back for my failure in everyday life.” ― George Orwell, Why I Write I’ve been…
    - 48 days ago, 7 Mar 14, 7:16pm -
  • True False Cognates
    I’m presently enjoying life deep in the highlands of Guatemala. It’s why I haven’t been posting regularly and fanatically. All things at their own time and pace but I’ll be back in the new year – loud, clear, full of posts! I’m taking Spa…
    - 21 Dec 13, 7:33am -
  • A hard day at the office ….
    I had a hard day at the office. Teachers usually do. So wrote this poem and will share.
    - 12 Oct 13, 9:50am -
  • Stories from the trenches: The Creative Teacher
    Over the years, spending time with thousands of new or budding teachers – I’ve thought and thought and thought about the major factors that make a “great teacher”.   It’s not an easy thing to pin down, given that there are so many differen…
    - 11 Oct 13, 9:26pm -
  • Not just playing a part
    I’ve been working on a new post this weekend, a reflection on my own development as a teacher and all the footprints that truly led me to where I am right now. Something for myself but which other teachers might find some truth therein. I’m not e…
    - 5 Oct 13, 6:51am -
  • Stories from the trenches 4
    This story comes from my time teaching at Bloor and Bay, 5th floor, N.E tower – Language Connections International. I was teaching new immigrants to Canada part of the day, foreign students the other half. Small classrooms with one wall all windows…
    - 22 Sep 13, 5:06am -

Language Log

  • It begs the way we see the world
    Brad Plumer, "Two Degrees: How the World Failed on Climate Change", Vox 4/22/2014: "If you’re serious about 2°C, the rates of change are so significant that it begs the way we see the world. That’s what people aren’t prepared to embrace," says…
    - 1 day ago, 23 Apr 14, 4:08am -
  • The city of Mr. Andreessen, South Korea
    By now, the sinking of the South Korean MV Sewol on April 16, 2014, with 476 persons on board, is known to the whole world.  Especially tragic is the fact that most of the passengers were high school students on an outing and that the ship's captain…
    - 1 day ago, 22 Apr 14, 8:48pm -
  • Gaps inside adjunct phrases
    Linguists have often assumed that the principles of English syntax do not allow a dependency between the head noun and the "gap" in a relative clause to span the boundaries of an adjunct such as a conditional if phrase. They will invent pairs of this…
    - 2 days ago, 22 Apr 14, 5:28am -
  • Playing philologist at summer camp
    In response to "What would a "return to philology" be a return to?", Omri Ceren proposes a simple explanation for Paul de Man's assertion that literary "theory" was just a return to philology: You might be overthinking the de Man thing. He did the…
    - 3 days ago, 21 Apr 14, 4:24am -
  • Philology and Sinology
    I was going to post this as a comment to Mark Liberman's "What would a 'return to philology' be a return to?", but it got to be too long, so I'm putting it up as a separate piece. To begin with, when people ask me what my profession is, I've always r…
    - 3 days ago, 20 Apr 14, 10:42pm -
  • Expletive undeleted
    Either the NYT has changed its policies, or some editor was asleep at the beeper and let  this through by mistake — "Raptors Drop Expletive and Game to Nets in Playoff Opener", NYT 4/19/2014: Sparked by a stinging expletive the NBA playoffs got o…
    - 4 days ago, 20 Apr 14, 9:57am -

Jeremy Harmer

  • Angel or devil? The strange case of Sugata Mitra
    Last Saturday Sugata Mitra gave a plenary at an international teachers’ conference. When it was over a proportion of the audience gave him a standing ovation, but an equal number refused to get to their feet and a proportion of the ‘remaining sea…
    - 16 days ago, 8 Apr 14, 12:50am -
  • What Sheryl Crow gave her attention to: a conundrum for language teachers
    I was reading the Guardian yesterday and came across a short interview with the singer Sheryl Crow during which she responded to the question ‘what have you sacrificed for your art?’ with the answer “my love life. I think whatever you give your…
    - 70 days ago, 13 Feb 14, 3:31am -
  • Testophile or testophobe?
    I was very taken with Luke Meddings’ recent blogpost about the tensions between education and big business (amongst other things). He suggested that whereas we teach to reach students, to help students reach their potential, others see teaching as…
    - 17 Dec 13, 1:05am -
  • Shall we kill off the digital native?
    Someone (let’s call him Marc Prensky!) once came up with a rather neat description of the difference between some kids and some older people. The former, he suggested, were digital natives who grew up with technology all around them as a given –…
    - 23 Nov 13, 4:01am -
  • Does size matter? Or is it shape? Or room?
    As October faded into November I found myself giving talks at the fabulous TELLSI conference in Mashad, Iran, immediately followed by a stint at the IGA conference (Instituto Guatamalteco-Americano) in Guatemala City, and then MEXTESOL in Queretero,…
    - 19 Nov 13, 1:44am -
  • Would you like to be a ghostwriter?
    I wonder if you have seen the Roman Polanksi movie The Ghostwriter, or read the novel The Ghost by Robert Harris that it is based on. The premise of the film and novel is that the central character is hired to ‘ghost’ the autobiography of a past…
    - 30 Sep 13, 6:01am -

Tech Savvy Educator

Leoxicon

  • SLA research: still in the shackles of traditional grammar?
    Second Language Acquisition (SLA) research also needs a lexical revolution to free itself from the shackles of grammar tyranny. Rant alert!Photo by richardoyork on Flickr[CC BY-NC-ND 2.0]I was recently asked to give a talk at a conference on the top…
    - 5 days ago, 19 Apr 14, 7:49am -
  • To confer or to concur?
    Image by @sandymillinvia eltpics on FlickrFor the first time since it was last held in Harrogate (2010), I didn’t go to the annual IATEFL conference this year and - like thousands of other English teachers who couldn’t afford to go to the largest…
    - 10 days ago, 13 Apr 14, 10:25pm -
  • What corpora HAVE done for us
    Sinclair's seminal work - the bible of corpus linguisticsIn this post I would like to defend linguistic corpora and their relevance to the ELT field which Hugh Dellar raises doubts about.Years ago before I became familiar with corpus tools (corpus as…
    - 40 days ago, 15 Mar 14, 4:00am -
  • Horizontal alternatives to vertical lists
    Photo by Tzvi MellerAs much as it seems counter-intuitive, teaching new vocabulary in semantic sets (e.g. jobs: doctor, teacher, lawyer etc. or colours: red, blue, yellow etc.) does not facilitate learning. As far back as in the 1990s, research show…
    - 44 days ago, 11 Mar 14, 5:18am -
  • Binomials
    Photo by @aclil2climb via eltpicsBinomials are two word expressions (strong collocations) such as "dead or alive", "give and take", "law and order". In this activity inspired by a short film activity on FilmEnglish, students become more aware of bin…
    - 48 days ago, 7 Mar 14, 6:37pm -
  • Top 3 web tools of 2013
    As the year draws to a close it’s time for various top 10, 20 etc lists. I am going to limit myself to 3 and share the web tools that have undoubtedly been my favourite this year. Three different tools - three different uses.Lyricstraining – List…
    - 53 days ago, 1 Mar 14, 10:12pm -

eltjam

  • newCambridge EdTech Startup Weekend
    ELTjam is collaborating with Accelerate Cambridge in organising the first ever Cambridge EdTech Startup Weekend
    - 8 hours ago, 23 Apr 14, 11:59pm -
  • What can ELT learn from Spotify?
    There are few things that we at ELTjam enjoy more than mining Spotify’s immensely rich seam of content in an on-going quest to discover, share and devour copious amounts of well-crafted music. Spotify is on our desktops, laptops, phones and tablet…
    - 8 days ago, 16 Apr 14, 6:41pm -
  • Tales of the undead
    We’re delighted to welcome Russ Mayne (@ebefl) from the brilliant Evidence Based EFL blog onto ELTjam for his debut post. Russ gave one of the standout talks at this year’s IATEFL conference, and below he reflects on what might happen next …I…
    - 9 days ago, 15 Apr 14, 3:46pm -
  • What We’re Reading – IATEFL Special
    Is it really almost a week since IATEFL finished? And what a week it’s been. If you missed the conference – or if you’ve been living in a cave all week – here’s our round-up of some of the best IATEFL response pieces.Did I get as much as…
    - 13 days ago, 11 Apr 14, 4:30pm -
  • Why we should be afraid of the big bad wolf: Sugata Mitra and the neoliberal takeover in sheep’s clothing
    The proliferation of blog posts that have followed in the wake of Sugata Mitra's keynote speech at IATEFL Harrogate last Saturday morning is almost as remarkable as the fact that such a controversial figure was given the opportunity to deliver…
    - 15 days ago, 9 Apr 14, 7:43pm -
  • The Future of ELT
    It was interesting to be at IATEFL this year, the annual land grab for attention larger than ever, and a conference dominated by discussions, presentations and a plenary about the future of ELT, which – it is suggested – will be completely mediat…
    - 16 days ago, 7 Apr 14, 9:14pm -

Authentic Teaching Willy Cardoso

  • Box-ticking or mind-mapping?
    Originally posted on unwrapping the education box :This is a joint post between Willy Cardoso and Divya Madhavan on questions about ELT professionalism.…
    - 6 days ago, 18 Apr 14, 7:30pm -
  • What’s your CPD level?
    In a recent interview, to be published soon at SEETA, I said: … how can you possibly measure and grade ... Continue reading
    - 34 days ago, 20 Mar 14, 11:39pm -
  • Importing language teaching methodology
    To deny that there is a conflict in contemporary ELT, particularly but not exclusively in the ‘importing’ of new techniques associated ... Continue reading
    - 55 days ago, 28 Feb 14, 8:00pm -
  • A lesson based on the teacher’s ignorance
      I was kindly invited to submit a lesson idea for the Disabled Access Friendly Campaign in April 2013. Many ... Continue reading
    - 100 days ago, 14 Jan 14, 7:21pm -
  • 14 big questions
    1. Is it the role of language teachers to address social issues in the classroom? Why (not)? 2. If languages ... Continue reading
    - 9 Jan 14, 10:33pm -
  • Questioning professional practice
    “All professions are conspiracies against the laity” (George Bernard Shaw in the play The Doctor’s Dilemma) Historically more commonly (documented) ... Continue reading
    - 25 Nov 13, 12:45am -

Janet Abruzzo's Edublog

  • Spring Blog Festival
     I would like to highlight an upcoming online event next weekend which may be of interest to my readers, especially those of you who are bloggers, or are interested in becoming bloggers.  Below is an extract from the introduction to the session in…
    - 46 days ago, 9 Mar 14, 2:47am -
  • Feedback on EVO Crafting the ePerfect Textbook 2014
    Sunday February16th marked the final day of the exciting five-week EVO Crafting the ePerfect Textbook session.  It has been a truly exhilarating and educational experience, connecting with over 500 teachers from around the globe.  I was helping the…
    - 61 days ago, 22 Feb 14, 7:32pm -
  • CO14 - An Exciting Weekend of CPD!
    This weekend Friday 7th February to Sunday 9th February promises to be an exciting couple of days for educators around the world.It is the Connecting Online's 2014 E-conference, which is free to attend. It is all hosted on the WizIq platform.  Speak…
    - 76 days ago, 7 Feb 14, 12:58am -
  • EVO 2014 Sessions - Fab CPD Opportunity!!
    You can now register for free to participate in this year's Electronic Village Online sessions! The registration period is from January 6th - 12th. Week one kicks off on Monday January 13th.  Each session lasts 5 weeks until February 16th. This will…
    - 10 Jan 14, 9:36pm -
  • Goodby 2013, Hello 2014!
      2013 will go down in my personal history as a year of being preoccupied with an event from the past. At times this year, I could think of nothing else, and it threatened to overshadow any of the joys that 2013 actually managed to bring.  I am ha…
    - 1 Jan 14, 2:26am -
  • Five ......
    ......years ago I started blogging, and it was an event that changed my life in quite a dramatic way.  Janet's Abruzzo Edublog is now officially over five years old and I would like to say what a joy it has been to blog and to share my ideas, lesson…
    - 28 Dec 13, 7:48pm -

Teacher Training Unplugged

  • Where are all the unplugged teacher trainers?
    Dogme ELT has been around (in the sense of having a name and a movement of people who recognize it as a legitimate and defined approach to teaching languages) for the best part of 15 years at this point of writing; what this means is there are a sign…
    - 94 days ago, 19 Jan 14, 10:32pm -
  • Dogme is not “just good teaching”
    Usually when (it) is so simple we say, “Oh, I know that! It is quite simple. everyone knows that.”But if we do not find its value, it means nothing. It is the same as not knowing. - Shunryu Suzuki in “Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind” - I am not s…
    - 9 Oct 13, 6:22pm -
  • balance isn’t everything
    Movement is the destruction of balance. I don’t know who I originally heard this from, but it was in the context of running theory. The idea is that in order for a physical body to move in any direction, it cannot be in a position of balance. That…
    - 22 Jul 13, 2:34am -
  • dogs, disasters and dodgy grammar rules – teaching the passive
    A 20-minute exploration of how conventional treatment of the”rules” for using the passive voice (as, for example, presented in coursebooks or standard student grammar books) misses the chance to introduce learners to a simpler, more elegant and m…
    - 17 Jun 13, 5:00am -
  • to andi and scott, with love, anthony’s students
    A couple of days ago I taught a short (35 minute) lesson to the teaching practice students on the CELTA course we are running in Hamburg at the moment.  I had used a personal story to introduce the structure “used to” and, while setting up some…
    - 14 Jun 13, 3:50am -

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