Showing posts from September, 2009

163. One student "está en la luna"

"Pepito está en la luna", we say in Spanish.
Equivalent to "being in the clouds".
The teacher coach said to veteran Shean,
"When you are saying something to them, like presenting something, explaining a game, giving them examples of past continuous, asking them something, do look, address with your looking at each student.
Look in the face.
Do not address the class-group as a whole, or looking down on your papers, or looking at a single kid, or at a single adult learner.
With true affection and concerning.
Focus your sight on Luisa, who is day-dreaming about Alex.
Or Fernando is "en Bavia", "en la luna".
Or gaze at Miguel and Pepenacho, who are arguing about something in a low voice.
Stop your presentation if this last case."

A future vision of laboring on the moon. blogastronomia com . You may know that the last proposal from NASA to Obama is to forget traveling to the moon, and trying to go to Mars directly, with no stopover bases on…

162. Fun with some math

A simple game, and focus-on demanding.
It makes your students get so concentrated, and wishing to participate.
You teach them how to say + "plus" and - "minus".
It's math.
You moderately say cyphers linked with those mathematical signs.
Not too long strings.
I assure you that when you say... "make...", with emphasis, they put up their hands high and shout the result, all at the same time.
Very fun.
I do it with numbers up to 15 approximately, with kids aged 11, 10, 12...

A sligh; thank you, thecolors com

161. The wee things of the everyday teaching

Consider this. Teaching kids; teaching adult learners; enthusiastic and or perseverant learners, who make good use of any chance to learn something else; one of these learners, with his somewhat basic English, but with loads of enthusiasm, who starts a conversation with a male flight-attendant, in the flight to Rome, for the canonization of Saint Josemaria, in 2002. Chwa, one of my perseverant followers, who writes so interesting and helpful hints for us teachers of English. Other followers, like one professor of English Medieval Literature in Universidad de Jaen, yet he is not medieval at all; another follower, who is a nut at Don Quijote; Andrew Almendras, another enthusiastic and perseverant learner of Spanish, based in Los Angeles; Sorry, Nasher, I cannot say anything about you, but hope so. Treating unique persons. Every person, with a radical capability of creativity, maybe that person is the disruptive kid you have to "soportar" in the classroom, one day after another…

160. He is trying to communicate

One day the teacher coach said to veteran Shean, "The learners have to learn how to learn. Often my students do not understand a certain exercise fom their textbooks or workbooks, and ask me to tell them what to do. No way, man. Do not tell him what he has to fill out in the exercise. Make thim think. Give him clues and ask him questions in order to understand what he has to do specifically. He has to read the instructions of the exercises, with a dictionary. No mentally translating into L1. Close reading the markers: headlines, subheadlines, topic sentences, type of exericise, the given example if any. I read something of this from the book by Rebecca Oxford, about learning strategies, I told you about. Very convenient for your students also." flixster com . Kramer vs Kramer. Justin Henry and (I think) Meryl Streep.

159. Describe a picture

The teacher coach said to the old veteran teacher, "Like you know, I don't tell you, for example, games with every detail we could take into account to implement it, every step, possible variations, etc. Here I give you some clues. The daily work will show you further things you can do to improve the games, with the students you actually have. One very creative game is stuff about describing a photograph. I used to bring to the classroom one copy of National Geographic. Basically I said things that I could see on the picture, and they were listening during the description. I referred to the people, colors, actions, above and below, etc., slowly and looking at my students from time to time. When I finished the depiction I asked the students to repeat what they could remember, what they had understood. A very plastic game, and fun." Thank you, images pearsoned ema com .

158. Are you persuasive?

The teacher coach added,
"Regarding speeches, ones made by a 'candidate' to president for example, we practice notional and functional modes or approachings.
Let's take functional, to say one of the sides of this coin.
The student persuades, convinces his audience. He tries to.
So, he can say statements by using future with 'will' and/or with 'going to'.
Plus giving a convincing significance to those utterances, those sentences.
Better if he exaggerates, because he will attract the attention:
get imagination loose.
Suggest to the student stuff to say.
Or negotiate with him, so as to make him think of more shocking, striking statements. Intonation is key here.
Help him to act out big.
Adolescents, perhaps more in Spain, show shy.
The speaker must have fun.
But it's difficult to attain it sometimes."
reeleyes wordpress com . This is from the first episode. I sheerly remember when I went to the theatre to watch it. The ticket was some pesetas 125…

157. Speeches, debates, promises, promises, promises

NB.- I just realized the attached picture might someway mean something pejorative about those gentlemen. Nothing this sort I meant. Furthermore, i do not know them. Just i liked the photograph, an interesting one if you have a peek at it. Let's carry over it: The teaching coach told old Shean, "I was thinking of telling you, of giving you some brief clues so as you may have a view of higher-level, heavy tasks for your students. First, you all will have to carry out a search of terminology. Second, they implement the task, you know. From a more simple contest between two students giving speeches as each has been proposed as the principal of the school, and she, or he presents the new schedule, rules, recess-periods, new technology, whether uniform or not (in Spain some students don't like wearing uniforms of the school at all; as soon as they arrive home, they change), and so on. Or a candidate for the primaries. Or proposals to end up out the world economic crisis. Pros and…

156. Alice in Wonderland: Where is the key?

Teaching? = have fun. With the people you mostly work with, every day: your own students. Even if they would show as if they had no mind, no heart. Ultimately they are a person, each one, with her, with his biography, personality, gender, family, being a child to God, having a body and soul, etc. And you have to let them be aware they are the actors and actresses, the main ones in the daily drama. And you being the director of that theater-show. It's them, who truly want to learn. They need the grammar and the vocabulary. And you have to provide them with; have to usher them how to find the stuff for communication with other people. Each student is the way he precisely is. I do know you help him get the best of himself. Shrek-tercero4jpg extracine com

155. Are gap-fills any useful to acquire English?

"Read the sentences and fill out the blanks." On this address you can read three opinions about this frequent kind of exercises our students have to do. One opinion is of mine. The web site is of BBC-The British Council. Give your view at these forums! mutation futuristic car concept2, on tuvie com

154. Getting the most of homework

One mother spoke with me a few days ago, concerned especially with the fact whether we, in the classes of this very starting academic year, were going to study grammar, his son's grammar. Parents seem to be worried - they are worried with his son passing the subject of English, of the school. And the subject of English, and French, must serve to get the learner enable to communicate in those languages. The grammar and vocabulary are the foundations of the building of communication: no foundation, no communication. Those exercises the kid has got to fill in, in order to make the correct answers are but the skeleton, the necessary skeleton to reach high. Why in Spain, despite the so many years spent in learning English, do people not have fluency at speaking, to say an example? Nonetheless the thing is changing in Spain... Is it? Thank you, porlafamiliaporlavida wordpress com

153. TPR

The teacher coach reminded veteran Shean of an old but significant game: TPR. It stands for Total Physical Response. Suitable for young students. The students act out an action their teacher says, in imperative mode: 'Play the guitar', 'Go to the window and open it. Close it because it's cold'. This doing actions while listening to language, enables posterior comprehension, in later grades. One student him or herself can say the instructions. Seat 600, produced in Spain 1957 through 1973. motorpasion com

152. What if the class-period was a total failure?

The teacher coach told old Shean, "So far, I told you things to implement in the classroom, but what to do when someone tells me he is totally burnt out with his students? You gotta consider that this may happen to you. First premise, Do not think or do anything when still burnt, right after the class-period. Leave the problem for tomorrow's pondering, planning the class, and possible remedies: you will be more objective and minimize the matter. Also, if you see one game, so to speak, does not turn out to work fine now, don't carry it on; swift into another stuff. Regarding a general 'ruin': when calm down, next day, or even within some days, take the little terrorist and speak with him, letting him out an exit on his own, and you not rejecting all his attitude in a radical way. All trees drop fruits, nothing is spoiled, all you sow will spring fruit, sooner or later." Charles A. Lindbergh did achieve to cross the Atlantic with no stopover, as early as in 192…

151. Working in groups you said?

The teaching coach told veteran Shean, "Elicit from your students how they can work as a group of three, to fill out the blanks of one exercise about past simple. What can each member contribute with. In L2 or in L1. How to make every member of the team to intervene. How can they help the student-member that has a very low level, or he is lazy. What can he do within the group. Advantages of working in such a way. And then, on another day you will implement this technique. It can be a sound practice for their future work, when developing their career." farn4 static flickr com

150. How to assess my students' progress

The teaching coach said to veteran Shean, "The aim of the class-periods is communication. Hence, assess the capability of your students of how to hold that communication, between people. Recall that you and your students have practiced the grammar and vocabulary of the unit. An exercise, eventually must be at the service of communication. Evaluate communication, not merely grammar and vocabulary memorization." Some students I think speaking with their teacher. colegiomaterdei com . I think the lady on the left hand side of the picture is so young: is she one other student? On top of that, those girls are communicating among them.

149. Awaiting for the kids to stay calm

The teaching coach told veteran Shean, "Do not start your class-period, what you are going to say first that day, what you thought as a warm-up, till your students stop stirring up around, till your students are focusing on you, on what you are going to say first. Be calm. Call Luis into order if he keeps chattering with Miguel. Gaze at them. Stare at them. Cross your arms. And then..., only then, right?" James Stwart, starring on Rope, directed by amazing Hitchcock. Something curious of this movie is that it all along was filmed with a single traveling, if I am not wrong, now when recalling it. From: nitishkhrisna wordpress com .

148. Outfitting a résumé

The teaching coach told veteran Shean, "You asked me for a high-level game. Making up a résumé, a CV, in other words. The teacher has to think of the possible points the student should name on his or her résumé. Elicit from your students what they think they should include on it. Basically I'd say three points. This is a game that prepares them for their future. Basically there should be three points: formation, professional experience, and hobbies and interests. The résumés should include what the candidate expects the company is going to have a special interest in. A second step could be coming to the front part of the classroom and present her résumé. Three adults will present their résumé. Then, the rest of the class-group will say pros and cons about each one, perhaps with the help of questions by the teacher." On the photo Louise Moncrieff. Thanks to www hwsa org usa .

147. Shouting? Few times

The teaching coach told veteran Shean, "In Spain it's said that teachers lose about twelve minutes of a class-period trying to make their students quiet. The class-period is theoretically one hour. That said, the conducting the class-period should be somehow smooth, and stopping to gaze at the disruptive students, in silence. I'm thinking that this way could take some minutes, but how many? The point I wanted to show now is that many teachers shout to the students many times, and this way of keeping the kids silent gets more and more ineffective. Plus the students do not like this way. I would tell you to shout rare times."

146. More about excellence

The teaching coach went on, telling veteran Shean, "The teacher transmits an excellence pursue, to her or his students. And one day these latter ones realize they have to really acquire English. Something very helpful is conducting the whole class-period in that language. Students are reasonable: youngsters, the person, tends to good, the person adheres himself to good, when shown to him. The person loves what he knows. What he knows, he, more and more, tends to love it. The natural thing is loving God, the others, and oneself. Though we also tend to selfishness, egoism. However, young people are very capable of high ideals." I suppose Chwa would be able to understand what these Chinese girls are writing on the blackboard. Photo thanks to flickr com.

145. A stack big welcome to a new follower!

This entry is to welcome Antonio Barnés. He is an ace, an expert at Don Quijote, among other things. He got sobresaliente cum laude in the presentation of his doctoral thesis on the classical authors, whose sentences appear on that memorable universal literature novel. As well, if you wish to participate in a contest of stories, let him know. The competition is about the transfer of people from Spain to Morocco, and the other way reverse. These people, chiefly inhabitants of Magreb or with familar roots there, and working in Europe, pass through Estrecho de Gibraltar (Strait of Gibraltar), either to Magreb or back their workplace in Europe. This passing is seasonal. You can write either in Arabic or in Spanish. Participate and hit the jackpot! On the picture you can see The Super 14 Brumbies training, on glennwood high school durban com - Thank you. One guy is holding a soccerball and another guy a rugby one. Do they play both?

144. #c37291902312342367

English for Specific Purposes (ESP). #c37291902312342367

If you click on the above cyphers you will go to a comment of mine about writing for business students. This comment has been published on ELT Cafe, Chwa's own blog on teaching English. Visit this latter blog, by clicking either the title of this post or the long number above. It's worthy to visit Chwa's blog. Photo from faculty salisbury edu

143. Excellence

The teaching coach said, “The teacher, and the school, have to point high, to excellence; excellence in teaching a language. They have to hit pay dirt. And the learner should take advantage of any chance he has to speak in English. He is audacious. He plunges into the water. He takes risks.” cervantesvirtual com

142. Excellence, that hits pay dirt!

It hits pay dirt, said the teaching coach, meaning that a teacher, and a learner, must aspire high, so high, so high: the teacher with his or her teaching, the learner with his or her learning a language. Otherwise, up and go. Something that has to do with this: In Spain, they unfortunately have big rates of "fracaso escolar" (study failure, decay, the opposite to excellence). I'll tell you next post furtherly about how to get excellence, at learning English. Pic from lhy ggpht com . It shows a futuristic and idealistic world. It is not just cartoons: it shows also the human trend to reach happiness. Inventions, imagination, technology are at the service of humankind. Creatures, the created world is good, for it was created by our Father. God told man to work in the earth, in order to serve and glorify Him, to serve people, to make himself better.

141. Putting the teacher to the test

The teaching coach told old Shean, "I can tell you about a game one teacher did one day, and the game turned out good. The class, as a group, plus the teacher, have been lately working on the names of the States. Well, the teacher, had a sudden light: You, kids, ask me to say the names of the States I can remember. The teacher was not American but Spanish. The mood and the mode was game-like, so as stirring the students a little. So the teacher started to name the States, starting from New England, whilst he was acting as if he were making a big effort - actually he was making the effort: Vermont, Maine, Massachusets, Connecticut, New York, Maryland, Delaware, Tennessee, Kentucky, Virginia and West Virginia. Right, ok, 'twas fun. And more importantly, the kids took a more protagonist-like mood. Try yourself." Two students of Eton College, archivist f2s com I myself forgot New Jersey; so here it is. The teacher's name was Antonio (for example).

140. A trainer or a coach?

The teaching trainer told Shean, “I’m thinking about whether saying..., I mean, I’m lately thinking whether I should be a trainer, or a coach. Yes so, because I’d rather prefer to be as a coach, you know. I think a coach does not just prepare, train a prospective teacher, but he or she invests something else in the teaching thing, to that novice teacher. The trainer, or, better said, the coach, tries to get something else from his learner, from the future teacher, say, from the person himself. The coach does not just give technical stuff, but also she or he transmits, so to speak, ... a more human and humane stuff. Why so? Because that future teacher as well will have to give something else to his students. What else? His, her very person, you know, he or she will donate all his talents, his personality, his whole oneself, ... to the kids. Summing up, I would talk of a teaching coach.” Photo from a camp run by Moraleda in the Natural Park of Cazorla, province of Jaén (south Spain).

139. Welcome, Naresh Kumar

You are so welcome, Naresh Kumar. My blog is open, as you know, to everybody. I would appreciate acquainting you a bit more, learning a bit more, if you don't mind. On the other hand, you can submit any comment that could enrich this blog. The aim of this blog is helping first, teachers, and also anyone who would want to read something. I hope the things said here might be useful or helpful in some way. Thus, again, welcome, Naresh Kumar. Oh, something else. Excume me, I'd like too to learn whether you are a man or a lady. Thank you, hubpages com, for the picture. Oh, why this picture? Because the first educators of their children, as you know, are their parents themselves.

138. Discipline helps reach excellence

The teaching trainer told us, "In Spain (at least) they have got real big problems with regard to discipline, at many institutes, 'ESO' and 'Bachillerato'. Believe me, some teachers are hit. By the students. Well, some students. By the parents themselves. Few parents. Few 'niños'. I knew a teacher, on the other hand, who did not do anything special. This guy had a natural (or gained) authority. He was not rough. Not rude. He used to listen to his students, whatever these ones wanted to say. He was calm. He did not lose his temper. He faced up with the ordinary troubles that may arise. Rather than punishment, this fellow made his students to face up with their own responsibility. He did not scream. Even more, he was appreciated, for his students knew he was a thorough person, a professional in the best sense; yes sir, he was." A German Gothic armor, at lalorica blogspot com . Thanks a lot!

137. Vocabulary

Here you have a comment I just sent to BBC-British Council. I gave up because I could not transcript the catcha after I had written the comment. Anyway, I hope it might help you and your kids or adult learners.

Hello, evergreen and every teacher,
You are so right when you say that both understanding and being capable of retrieving vocabulary are important points. You do need vocabulary if you want to utter any message.
Both vocabulary and grammar stuff are kind of the skeleton that hold communication, which is the target of ours, teachers of English.
Briefly: Fun. This is paramount, I guess.
Firstly we read a simplified version of a classic, say, or any other type of reader, fit for your kids' level. Even, a bit higher a level of your students.
We get stuck to the plot, because I ask questions to help my kids understand the thread, more or less. So, first, fun. I help them with my presenting new vocabulary that would help them understand what is going on in the novel. They achieve to sa…

136. Effort

The teaching trainer said, "I'm rolling one idea round my head. More and more I presume that the student's effort is paramount. To learn: effort. To get good grades: effort, perseverance. To get fluent himself or herself at speaking: practice, communication in and out of the school. Plus effort. In Spain I, the teacher, have got to make, to help the student to invest and suffer an ordinary endurance and effort. There are other points regards school in Spain. Let's stop here. So far." gaztelueta com, thanks.

135. Stuck words

The teaching trainer said, "One game to paste new words to your students' minds is this: you write a somewhat long chain or string of new words, attached to one another so as to show a very long word. And the kids have to read word by word, trying to separate them up. You can be marking oblique bars between the words. This as well focuses on spelling." A futuristic train, designed long ago. darkroadstedblend com

134. Your job in the classroom

"Don't let your life be sterile. Be useful. Blaze a trail. Shine forth with the light of your faith and of your love.

With your apostolic life wipe out the slimy and filthy mark left by the impure sowers of hatred. And light up all the ways of the earth with the fire of Christ that you carry in your heart."
#1 point from The Way, written by Saint Josemaría Escriva (1902-1975). This paragraph is quoted from an American version, published by Scepter. I have read the same text with slight changes regarding expressions. The book has been translated into above 40 editions, in languages such as Albanian, Arabic, Bahasa, Chinese, Dutch, Finnish, French, Korean, Quechua, Russian, Tagalog, Cebuano, Norwegian, Tamil, Vietnamese... The o. v. is in Spanish.
flickr com . Just four pretty college students, to post any cute pic.

133. Formation for the teacher

Shean, the old teacher listened to the young but expertised teaching trainer, "A teacher also educates the students, not merely teaches English. Respecting their liberty. And in accordance with their parents. I think, you teacher, must re-think about the way you conduct the class-periods, you must read about ELT, also listen to your team, read novels, thought and philosophy books, about education, the family, adolescents, history, psychology, maybe even poetry, I'd add spiritual and theological books if you are a Christian (even so if you are not; it may help you out), journals, websites on the Internet..." Kiddies aided when the tsunami in south-eastern Asia, a few years ago.

132. Just a regular day

The training teacher told about one regular day at the school. "I wait for the students to keep out their stuff of the subject before mine. I wait for them to focus on me, on the class. With a smile..., well, I gaze at Carlos, he is stiring jumpy still. I smile and I say out a question to make them say... what they have done last weekend. So, this is a warm-up, a warmer, and..."

131. They love stories

"I learned this game, a productive one, from Mrs. MJA. Hand out strips of paper, with sentences from a tale, written by you. A cool one, right? They have just to put the sentences into the right sequence. Do this with teams: they struggle hard and snap-like to be the winners. You can in this way practice or teach linkers, conjunctions." math guardian co uk, thank you!

130. Gaining loads of vocabulary

Shean was a veteran. All in all, he listened to the teaching trainer, for he wanted to keep on improving, so as to help out his kids. "Gaining loads of vocabulary. Useful one. If the kid gets lost in an airport or in Manhattan... he or she will need stuff to survive out! Put your students into this situation. Elicit words from them. Utilize the whiteboard. Elicit expressions from them. Suitable questions for that circumstance. And you, teacher, will provide more. Then, practice the thing in the class-period, like, 'So, Miguel, you are lost in Manhattan', etc. Help them get into the trouble. Drawings, gestures, key words, acting out, the Internet... Use aids. And perform this is a class-period. Revise it another day. Cool. I assure you." nucleodelealtad blogspot com

129. Tell me about you, just a clue

I think I should say a bit more about the author of this blog. So, I am 40. Are you married, Fernando? I am a numerary of Opus Dei. This is like my second family. No, wait, not like. It is so. Also are my parents , my nephew, etc, are family of mine, as any other person. I think there might be faithfuls of this Catholic personal prelature in around 80 countries; just the same I'm not sure. It's a part, a portion of the Roman Catholic Church. For further, let me know. (The lady of the picture has nothing to do with Opus Dei. I don't know, maybe she has. Anyway she is working, and the "message" of the Work of God is you can be a saint in everyday regular life; there you encounter the Lord; you can be a saint with God's help. Otherwise, you cannot). raymentsschoolofmotoring -Most of the people of the Work are parents, young people, etc. I mean, a very few of us, like me myself, have an apostolic celibacy. However, this doesn't mean I am a pr…

128. September 11, 2001

Today is 9/11/09.
One relative of mine escaped from the thing. At that time he was attending the Holy Mass off. Hi again, Elliot,I appreciate your reply, plus entering into my blog.Yesterday I wrote one further comment, about some curious points to say; I mean, nothing serious though.The point is that did not allow me to post one more comment.I know Antonio Morales, a great guy. You also know him, for he worked with you at the previous program to ours in August.Even he told me big about you! Anyway as you know, the hiring you could not be arranged.For further jobs as a teacher, let me know, if you wish. i appreciate.Thanks again for your hard work at Ecos: you did help out the niños.Oh, many thanks for your mentioning the thing of my relative.Count on me. We could keep in contact, just if you wish.Best wishes for your career. If anythinf at my hand,in any way, let me know. Like for example a diploma saying you have worked in Spain, and so.Fernandohttp://fernandoexperiences…

127. Guessing a word from a drawing

Shean, the veteran teacher, wanted to learn further; because of that asked the teaching trainer, and this one said, "I have the experience of a game which the kids like big. One student, who has guessed a number from 1 to 10, or from 1 to 30, for large classes, comes to the BB and draws an object, an action, an abstract concept... Just his friends have got to guess the word he or she drew. Try." serypersona blogspot com

126. How can they learn to make full sentences

Shean, the veteran teacher thought he had to continue his formation;
so, he carefully listened to the teaching trainer,
“One important step for the kids is to pass from saying or writing words to full sentences.
Here you have another game to help this out.
Write just words on the black- or digital-board.
At random.
They, anyway, are words that if put into the correct order, make a sentence with meaning.
It’s a catchy game.”The scene above is from El león, la bruja y el armario, a sequel of The Chronicles of Narnia, based on the work of C. S. Lewis. movies yahoo com

125. At The British Council-BBC

If you want, you can see a comment of mine regards the circumstance of being new as a teacher: On the photo: a school though it is not the way we are used to thinking of. But a school anyways.

124. Further games

Just to let you know, my reader, that soon I have a plan to give you more games that boosts up learning and acquiring English, or Thai, or... Fletcher gets the soccer ball. Manchester United. dailymail com uk

123. The main concern of the teacher

"So, the teachers show sin some way or another an attitude to life, to work, to treatment with other people.
An ttitude to human depth, happiness, felicity, blissfulness, plenitudiness, something higher, not possible to quench just with earthly things.
We are here, in the world, not just as fate.
Why am I here?
What am I here for?
Is there anything else after life?
I am 40.
Time flies.
I would like to dedicate the rest of my life to something everlasting, for eternity.
How much gingerly striving for life, making effort, effort... for nothing?
If there is Heaven (and Hell, as I do believe, because Jesus Christ revealed), I eagerly wish to get there, after this so brief life on earth.
I know that I will arrive in Heaven, with God, for ever and ever and ever.
Nevertheless, I can get this goal only with His help, with his endless mercy."
This was what the teaching trainer said to veteran Shean in a confidence.
Americans are helping to restore for example the palaces and ancient …

122. The main concern of the teacher is the teacher herself

Shean, the veteran teacher, listened to the teaching trainer, "The teacher is a person, before being a teach-er. And she, or he, teaches life, transmits an attitude toward life. He has a big responsibility. He is sowing seeds for the future. Even when he has not his students before him, when in his private life. It is important for the teacher to struggle in order to become a more thorough person. He tries to defeat, to overwhelm his flaws and vices. He has to gain virtues: study himself, effort, perseverance, veracity, honesty, chastity and fidelity, charity, generosity, endurance, etc. Iñigo on the snap. Thanks a million to gaztelueta com