HUB

What you need to ask yourself before creating ESL activities

12

Dec 2015

What you need to ask yourself before creating ESL activities

Creating ESL activities can sometimes be frustrating, at least that’s the case in my life. I sometimes find myself in need for inspiration, so I google some conversation topics that might interest the students, or that’s what I think.  I start working on the activity until I feel that it is perfect, I submit my activity and wait for the day when I get to…

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Is grammar important?

16

Jun 2015

Is grammar important?

Learning a second language essentially consists of ‘Reading’, ‘Listening’ and ‘Speaking’. ‘Writing’ isn’t particularly necessary unless the student expresses that they want to learn to write and, even then, it can be learned quite easily once the speaking and reading have been mastered. So, is grammar important? Grammar is important because it is the language that makes it possible for us to talk to one…

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Learning Styles

19

May 2015

Learning Styles

In one of my blogs I wrote about teaching styles in ‘The Art of Teaching English‘, today I’m going to write about learning styles. As different teachers have different teaching techniques, different students will have different learning styles. Learning styles refer to the way that people learn and everyone has a mix of learning styles although, some may find that they have a dominant style…

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What is intonation and why teach it?

30

Mar 2015

What is intonation and why teach it?

What is intonation? The term ‘intonation’ refers to the linguistic use of pitch to convey meaning of a sentence and/or word and during your life as a TEFL teacher you will come across students who will have difficulty using intonation and stress in the correct manner – this means they may not be able to get their point across very well and, in turn, native…

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24

Mar 2015

‘Schwa’ – unstressed syllables

Before I was taught how to teach English, by Oxbridge TEFL, I had no idea that the word “schwa” existed. Today, I’m writing about the ‘schwa’, which isn’t (incidentally) about the pronunciation of words such as ‘Schwartz’ and ‘Schwarzkopf’…it’s about pronouncing a sound, a sound that features a lot in the English language but, not in any other language. The schwa ([ə]) is typical in…

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17

Mar 2015

ESL – Common Mistakes Students Make

In my last blog post I listed a few ‘false friends’ – English words that students confuse with words from their own language – in this one, I’m going to talk about common mistakes. Every single day, at least one student will say ‘he’ when they mean ‘she’ and vice versa. They also tend to say ‘he’ when talking about an animal whose gender they…

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10

Mar 2015

False Friend

For anyone who’s never taught English or taken an advanced English course, you could be forgiven for assuming that a ‘false friend’ is someone who pretends to like you when they don’t. However, a false friend is in fact a word or phrase in two languages or dialects (or letters in two alphabets) that look or sound similar, but differ significantly in meaning.  I’ve listed below some…

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06

Mar 2015

Tiers for fears & choosing words to teach

Any conscientious teacher knows that choosing words to teach is not as easy as it seems.  Sure you can deal out words left, right & center.  However, would your students understand, grow & be empowered?  Fortunately, there is a nifty little 3 tier model that helps teachers enable their students to broaden their language capacity.   Examples: come, hear, happy, bed The first tier refers to…

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20

Feb 2015

Teaching new vocabulary: 7 fail-safe strategies

If teaching grammar forms the frame for language acquisition, teaching new vocabulary provides students with the building blocks. It is therefore the teacher’s responsibility to bring home the value of these building blocks by presenting them in perspective - that is, in a way that is relevant and useful for the students. In order to do this, educators can use the following 3 broad categories for teaching new vocabulary.  …

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TEFL teacher: What does it take to become one?

10

Feb 2015

TEFL teacher: What does it take to become one?

For those already familiar with the term ‘TEFL’ (an explanation of the various terms can be found here) you will know that it means teaching English as a foreign language but, what does this actually entail, other than the obvious. It would be a common misconception to think that teaching English to foreigners is totally different to teaching English in a school in the UK…

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