Thursday, July 31, 2014

1890. Elevating our work to the supernatural



Whilst you're teaching and working, if you're a Christian, you can carry out that labor because it's your duty but also for love to God and for his glory. 

In that way you're putting upward your labor to God, and so you sanctify that work, humble though may be. 

If you aren't a Christian, go on this way and you'll catch yourself closer to God, and you might become a Chrsitian, after the baptism, and can get to meet Jesus Christ, true man and true God. / Photo from: Sports-Physiotherapy-for-Cycling-Injuries-in-Perth  iphysioperth com au

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

1889. Working as a close team



Something also positive about this English course for me has been that the two teachers plus I have been working close together and in that way we've solved some minor problems. So we've worked as a team. 

Moreover also I've been closer to the students in their work of learning the language, and we've become friends - friends but not buddies. 

Nice people, both the two teachers and the students. 

When you pick up a student, one by one, and touched their hearts or souls I don't know, the students work more deeply - I'm slightly proud to say they have improved their English and bettered as persons. / Photo from: student-collaboration www soic indiana edu. The course was for boys, so we have bet for single-sex education 

1888. Fostering speaking in English



Today we've finished the classes with the two teachers of a prestigious academy in Marbella, province of Málaga, south of Spain. 

I've tried to be grateful for these two teachers' labor. 

I also noticed that the kids have improved their English and bettered as persons. 

As I was picking up the students from the two classrooms to practice more speaking we went to my office just talking in English, and they were understanding most of the time. / Photo from: teacher-and-students www thedimecolorado com

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

1887. Making a schedule is sensible



In Spain vacations start later and also the academic year begins later. The end of the academic year is about the end of June, and the beginning of the new academic year is on the second or third week of September. 

So now kids have a lot of holidays in front of them in Spain. 

It seems sensible for kids to have a schedule of vacation days. Ask your sons and daughters to draw one. 

And negotiate the usage of video games - may kids learn the delight of reading a book or an e-book. 

Kids shouldn't abuse of time dedicated to video games. During the academic year they should devote some hours to homework (study and exercises). / Photo from: happy-girl-doing-homework www sheknows com

1886. The summer English course: successful



Thank God the summer camp of English has been a success. 

Tomorrow Wednesday July 30 we have our last classes of English, and on 31 we return home. 

Some students came from so distant Galicia - 13 hours by van. 

The teachers did it well - we had two teachers and two levels. 

The language skill the students have practiced mostly is speaking, perhaps the most necessary skill among the four ones: listening, speaking, reading and writing. 

Besides the course was short, so we had to focus on one skill. 

When back to school in September I notice the kids that have spent part of their vacaction in such a program as ours - they're more fluent and familiar with speaking. / Photo from: junior-school-classroom. www dulwich org uk 

1885. Interesting books about education



The books recommended on post # 1884 are not only for parents: they can be useful for teachers, educators and adolescents. / Photo from: www 2nau edu

1884. Books about education and values



On post # 1865 I recommended you about some useful books about education. 

There is a series with some books in English (and in Spanish of course). The collection is "Hacer familia. Educar en valores" of the publisher "Ediciones palabra". 

epalsa@edicionespalabra.es, and www.edicionespalabra.es 

You can order some of the books. They're practical, deep, amusing, easy to read, with tricks and tips. There are some in English. / Photo from: 

Monday, July 28, 2014

1883. Watching movies helps



In the current English course we have watched a movie in English, with the subtitles or captions in Spanish, the students' mother language. 

I'm not in favor of doing so: I prefer that the students would watch the movie with the captions in English. 

Anyway, has it helped the students to associate spoken English with written Spanish? 

As I said I prefer to play a movie in English with the subtitles also in that language. / Photo from: mugglenet com. Hogwarts Harry Potter's school

1882. No vanity



Praise students' effort and struggling, gently, but do not praise his qualities, aptitudes... because these latter ones lead the kid to vanity. 

Sunday, July 27, 2014

1881. Our kids' personality




We parents influence on our kids' education of their personality and character. 

All we say, all we do, have an influence on their character, believe me. 

Our attitude toward life, work, hobbies, leisure time, habits and costumes, all that influence a lot on them, believe me. 

We have our kids in our hands. Plus we should take into account that their freedom as well influences on them, believe me: the things they do are forming and making up their personality. 

We parents have a great deal of responsibility, don't we? It's also nice though, very nice, believe me guys. / Photo from: scholarshipzine com

1880. Sanctifying our labor of every day


Our daily work can be something holy: you try to do it well; you can offer that work to God; that work is for the glory of God. You're becoming a saint with the grace and help of God. 

1879. Examing the teacher closely



The teacher examines, alright, but also he should examine himself: What have I done good today? 
What have I done wrong and bad today? 
What could I do better? 
Examine yourself, teacher, just for three minutes more or less. / Photo from: Student Studying. gomdl com

1878. What is your personality like?



Aristotle said that one's personality and character is the result of his actions. / Photo from: www cell onent com

Saturday, July 26, 2014

1877. Making mistakes is usual?



Romans used to say "proprium hominum errare", this is, we people tend to fail and commit errors. Then we should learn from these unavoidable mistakes and errors. / Photo from: child writing. www telegraph co uk 

1876. Praising his effort



Praise your students' effort and struggle, not so much concerning their aptitudes and capabilities. 

And you, teacher, struggle to be better, in little things every day. / Photo from: man swinging golf club. roseknowshealth com

1875. Yes, but why relax and rest?



Why rest? It is necessary to be able to return to school and work with new and fresh forces and strenghts. 

At the beginning of the new academic year you will feel happier and fresh and excited and enthused. / Photo from: nursinglicensemap com

1874. Relax, relax



It is important for teachers to relax and rest, periodically and more after an academic year. 

Rest is not doing nothing but change the activities and carry out others that are more simple or different. / Photo from: female teacher. dailysignal com

1873. Things clear



Don't get me wrong, muslim people, if post # 1872 bothered you, forget it. A brotherly hug, people. I just desire and wish the best for you.

1872. Conversion


I would advise you muslim people, respecting your freedom, to convert to the Christian believings. I'm very happy with Jesus Christ. But, as I said, I respect your freedom.

Friday, July 25, 2014

1871. No way, you're more valuable!



Some people and some students have a low self-esteem. 

And they are more valuable than what they think about themselves. 

We teachers can help them by asking them what positive traits and features they have, and write them down on a sheet of paper. 

Tentatively they will see more positive points. We've got to tell them to be honest, for they have more positive points than what they think, as I said. / Photo from: mentalhealth answers com

Thursday, July 24, 2014

1870. Treat the students well!!



Treat the student as a good person at the individual tutoring session and he will become a better person. / Photo from: publimetro com

1869. Again: our sons and daughters deserve the best, no doubt



Education is ok, it's alright, but parents first should set an example themselves. Education is necessary, but the first ones that have to change and improve are parents themselves. / Photo from: medicine utah edu

1868. Our sons and daughters deserve the best



The importance of communication between kids and their parents is something crystal clear. 

Otherwise our sons and daughters will turn to a close friend, but he cannot give good advice perhaps. / Photo from: medicine utah edu

1867. What are adolescents like?



Adolescence. 

Confusion. 

The first people that are confused are adolescents themselves. 

They experience a lot of changes. 

It's a crisis (= change). 

The teen realizes he won't be a child any longer. 

He behaves as a child sometimes and as an adult other times. The first amazed people are themselves. / Photo from: moms popsugar com

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

1866. My son doesn't love me anymore?



When teens do something wrong or misbehave at home, some parents think, "What did I do wrong in his education?", amd moms think, "My son doesn't love me anymore." 

The point is that adolescents experience a lot of changes: physiological, feelings, self-concept, etc. Even they do not understand themselves often. 

Now parents continue to be very necessary. 

Maybe you did well when still a child, and your son loves you and needs you; the thing is that adolescents experience those changes and are confused in some way, and show themselves arrogant often. 

Adolescence is not a disease, it's just a period of time. You, father and mother, have to talk with him a lot, and listen to him. He needs you both a great deal. / Photo from: Italian landscape. hdlandscapesphotos com

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

1865. Ok, books, but which books about educating?



Ok, we have to read books about educating, but which ones? 

In Spain and in other countries we have the series of "Hacer familia. Educar en valores", of the publisher "Ediciones Palabra". From my experience these books are really useful and helpful. 

1864. Educating today?



Our grandparents knew how to educate their children: some principles plus common sense. 

Today educating is not enough with those principles and common sense. Now it is much more different and difficult, for the external hedonist pressure is big, among other reasons. 

Parents nowadays have to learn to educate and have to turn to books about educating. / Photo from: www clinicaser com

Monday, July 21, 2014

1863. Communication within the family



It's of a paramount importance that there should be a stream of communication between parents and their children, otherwise for example the boy will come up with his best and closest friend to tell him his things, and maybe that friend is not prepared to give good advice. / Photo from: preschooler thebump com

1862. Back soon!

I will try to post again soon!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

1861. Intuition as a helper to learn a language


 
Ok, but what is intuition? On post # 1860 I wrote about intuition when learning/acquiring a language.
I write “learning/acquiring” because both can be achieved by a learner, at the same time, at the same class.
Intuition is something that popularly is connected more with women… perhaps.
Anyway, obviously a male learner can have a great intuition.
Intuition is like guessing what for example two people are talking about by means of extra-language helps and indications.
It has a lot of guessing, but it’s something else. I cannot say more things to define intuition. Just intuition is there, inside the learner. We kind of guess and find out about for instance two people are talking at a TV show. / Photo from: www flare com. disneys oscar nominated animation movie

1860. Some people who achieved to learn a language


 
Stevick, in his book about people who achieved to learn a language, wrote also about intuition.
The premise is that a Nordic, a Scandinavian girl tried to understand what two teachers were talking about. She was in the classroom and a native teacher went into the classroom.
So the two teachers were talking to each other.
By means of what she could understand, plus gestures, face expressions, the context, and something else I now do not remember, she was able to understand quite much of the conversation, also by means of intuition.
Intuition is an aid that our students and we ourselves can count on when learning and acquiring a foreign or a second language. / Photo from: Disney’s paperman_by_tamasaburo89-wallpaper.  hdwallpapers com

1859. Tests should be communication


 
Oh, I forgot it: tests and exams should above all be communicative, so based on communication, a piece of communication in this case between the teacher and the examinees.
The exercises should aim at communication.
The school subject of English has as a goal to provide with a communicative competence. / Photo from: John-Kahrs-paperman-walt-disney-yatzer-9 2013 academy award. www yatzer com. disney's Paperman. Animation movie

1858. What parts should I include in a test of English?


 
In my opinion and from my experience and others’ ones a test or exam of English for a unit or for a term – I think tests ought to be rather frequent, something like one per unit of the course book –, should include the four language skills except for speaking.
We are assessing daily our students’ communicative and grammatical competences and knowledge by speaking, plus you can carry out a more defined speaking test.
I could include a question or activity about vocabulary; then, some listening, reading and writing parts.
For example, and something so simple, after the vocab box, “Write a sentence with a word of exercise 1 (the one with just vocabulary)”.
And then each modern language teacher would make all this into something more specific. / Photo from: www zippi pt. the picture above is just for illustrating the post

1857. What criteria could I use to assess my students?


 
Assessment. So important a topic.
How can we assess and evaluate our students’ work, struggles, theory and competences, communicative competences for example? What should somebody’s last grade be, at the end of an academic year?
One important point is that we do know our students, and we could assign a grade to each of them. We have them every day in front of us and we could give them whatever grade they deserve, and probably, if we are honest, we could just say what and how each student has worked.
However, the final grade should be the mixture of that year’s work combining with the final exam. Like a combination of both, with more weight upon everyday work.
Maybe those who are fail can pass if they are able to pass the final exam. It’s up to each teacher’s honest criteria anyway. / Photo from: one more astronaut as an illustration, with a bit of humor. xoio de

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

1856. Homework or not?


 
In learning/acquiring a language, homework is just necessary, because anybody needs to spend hours plus hours in order to interiorize and actually grasp English or any other language.
This doesn’t mean we teachers should assign a lot of work to our students to carry out at home or in a library.
Coming to the head, it’s the learner himself who ought to dedicate this or that period of time to learn and acquire.
So we teachers could foster homework in a positive way, plus good grades. Perhaps we can set some homework (they have close to ten more school subjects), and suggest this or that, or whatever the learner thinks it’s ok with him. / Photo from: balloon. inhabitat com

1855. I can't make out his mood now


 
Although our students may not understand all, it happens that massive speaking in English by their teacher is a sound thing, for acquisition sake.
A time will arrive, when they’ll understand more.
Now eye-contact, gestures, the aid of the whiteboard, repetition, emphasis, etc., help to understand some things.
Anyway, whenever you expect to do something specific from the students, explain it with clarity, I’d tell you.
Intuition also assists to understand many things. Oh, and also your mood can be an aid to understand, either you’re glad, or you look worried, or upset. / Photo from: Piers Sellers spacewalk. commons wikipedia org

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

1854. You're great fellows, Ukrainians!


 
Thank you Ukrainians for your pageviews.
I do know you’re suffering dire-straits.
My prayers go there, for each Ukrainian.
You’re one of the countries that visit my blog the most, thank you again. I'd love to visit your country. / Photo from: beautiful landscape. hdw eweb4 com

1853. What do you do in summer? Keeping English alive


 
In the north hemisphere now we’re in summer, and kids are on vacations.
Something that can help them hold and keep English until the new academic year can be reading readers, or unabridged books and e-books.
As well the non-native English language teacher can do the same: reading novels or non-fiction essays.
It’s important that all the effort and struggle we’ve invested during the year (also the kids) in teaching and learning English would not be spoiled.
Anyway, what the kids have learned is there, somewhere in their brains and spirit. With the new year all that will be born again.
Reading is a good way of keeping English or any other modern language alive, even any ancient language, like Grecian or Latin. There some centers where Latin is learned, and the things in the class are said in those “dead” languages. / Photo from: Ideal landscape. miriadna com

Monday, July 14, 2014

1852. Just now that he's a teen it's of paramount importance


 
During adolescence the kid is passing through a vital period.
Self-esteem is pretty important now.
He is creating his self-image, and this one should be firm and of his own accord. He’s getting to know his strong points. He needs his grown-ups anyway.
He needs acceptance from others, mainly adults.
He doesn’t adhere to his family so much now: he starts to believe in his strengths and forces, though his family is so important just now.
He likes to be alone sometimes, and some others go out with his gang.
The kid needs to feel necessary and useful for others – otherwise he could stick to dangerous issues like drugs.
If he had a sane self-esteem when he was a child, now more likely his self-esteem will keep sane and firm, more and more. I took some ideas from scholar Ángel Antonio Marcuello, from La Coruña, Spain.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

1851. Each student is unique himself



The point is helping each student in your classes as the way they are. 

Or in another way, students are diverse, right? With weeks passing you get acquainted with each and every one of your students, and you get to know what you can expect from any of them. 

Also think of high-achievers: they oughtn’t to get bored. 

You could think you cannot be after each one, for you have many students in the classroom, but with a spark of love of benevolence and patience you can more or less treat each kid as he is. 

I mean not to make as many classes as students ther are, but the premise is treating each kid as he is, even demanding more than what you guess at first. / Photo from: entradasalhambragranadaalbaicin Alhambra 2013 iaa es. I live in Granada, where Alhambra palaces are

Saturday, July 12, 2014

1850. I felt peaceful


 
 
I watched the classroom from the door window. I also could hear them, for the door was a bit ajar.
The teacher said some things, and the kids, some of them, were acting out, but at once the teacher again took the class reins.
The students also contributed to the class with their ditties or isolated messages: the teacher looked as though she wanted to have them speaking.
She was saying a lot of things – you know, before speaking a language it’s sound to hear it for long.
The atmosphere also looked nice. I was ashamed all the stuff was working so well here. The teacher was giving her best to the kids. On the walls there were posters, notices in English, a world map. I was comfortable and felt peaceful. This is a made up story, in honor to all the language teachers.

Friday, July 11, 2014

1849. Having fun in the classroom


 
 
A useful activity for speaking in English, if the students are with that language. Valid also for other languages of course.
 
You give the chance to two kids to speak all they can, on their own, about a topic they like and know about. Don’t let one of the students prepare something for his turn.
 
So you can choose whoever in the classroom after the first student’s turn.
 
The winner is the one that speaks for longer.
 
Otherwise they could consult the Internet, if you like, so as homework. I guess better in this case if they improvise. You can think of the many aspects they deal with this activity: fluency, knowledge of the topic, steel nerves, deep inside the topic whilst he’s acting, order in the mind, using varied lexis. / Photo from: jobeasyfair23 (1) www partimerichs com. this picture is merely an illustration

Thursday, July 10, 2014

1848. The importance of my family



Kids whose parents are together yet sometimes they argue – never  in front of their children – and ask for forgiveness after the argument, those kids often get better grades than kids whose parents are split up. 

In these latter families the mom usually has to conduct herself as a mom and as a dad, let’s say. 

In a regular family, dad’s presence is necessary for boys, because so they have an unaware model. All this isn’t 100% so. 

We teachers should have all these circumstances with us in mind, for example for tutoring sessions both with the kid and with the parents or parent. / Photo from: 5-Most-Importnat-things-teachers-need-from-parents. tutordoctor com

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

1847. How to get a good English



The English language teacher should be fluent at speaking the target language. 

Also other language teachers. Because of that, it seems very useful and helpful to read books in the language. Or an e-book of course. 

The goal is to achieve an ample variety of lexis and everyday language. 

The teacher could use those words in his classes, if he thinks it’s sound. 

In that way he practices his new expressions. And also he uses English in an accurate way. / Photo from: people talking. www mywelcometothecity com

1846. Communication, communication and communication



Communicative competence. 

Our students ought to have a communicative competence, so as to meaningfully communicate and contact other classmates and the teacher alike. 

With years passing and a firm hand the teacher can obtain this aptitude. 

The class of English or any other language should be a momentum of communication – learning and acquiring the target language should enhance communication in and out of the classroom, in the target language. 

Communication is something indispensable within any human context, like the classroom or the halls of the school. This attitude boosts human relationships and connect people. / Photo from: dinner together and communication. www jtbonline org

1845. We keep the special atmosphere



I’ve tried the classes of the summer course be in English all the time, and it seems it works. 

There’s a moment when they see you and “automatically” they think in English, and that they’ve got to speak in that language. 

Anyway, if they spoke in Spanish I told them to try and say that same message in English, and they tried hard. 

The thing is that I lost valuable time trying to pacify them. They were so playful. It’s true that all the other activities of the program were playing and things like that. 

 So it seems a good and nice thing to talk to them in the target language, all the time long. / Photo from: San-Antonio-TX-restaurants-open-on-Thanksgiving. www ingramparkmazda com

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

1844. The art of creating an English-speaking atmosphere




Immersion. 

I guess it’s sound even whenever the students do not understand all what’s said by their teacher. They grip information from body language as well: face, gestures, and key words written on the whiteboard. 

If the teacher speaks in English all the time, each day they will understand more and more, plus they will feel the texture of the target language. 

I would advise you to speak even when you know they will not understand, in small passages or even instructions. 

This is not anything against speaking at their level or better a bit higher. 

An atmosphere of usage of English is created in the classroom at that time. / Photo from: girl playing the guitar. www bubblews com

1843. The art of conducting a class-group



Some years ago, in a class, a friend of mine that is a teacher now reprimanded his students in a hard way and speaking too up. 

Later he thought there were students who had done nothing wrong. 

On the next day, in order to balance the reprimanding, he congratulated their effort and struggle to behave well. 

He then noticed that the best discipline is self-discipline. And that the students had got to learn how to behave nice. They were in some way trying to behave well, learning to behave properly. He told them in that last class they were great. / Photo from: A young cyclist during Ri 008. www theguardian com

Monday, July 7, 2014

1842. Parents, teachers, students



The order and sequence of importance for kids’ education is first: parents; second: teachers; then: students. 

When we teachers encounter politeness lack in the kids quite often it’s due to the education at home: parents or parent have the main and indispensable role of educating their kids. 

Then we have teachers: if you want a school go ok, take care and train teachers. 

Finally kids: they receive our education as a result, both from parents and families, and from us teachers. / Photo from: boys cycling. www theecologist org

Sunday, July 6, 2014

1841. I admire my teacher



Adolescents admire teachers that are coherent with what they say. Otherwise, unless teachers are coherent, they can think their teacher is a hypocrite. 

Teens need and look with close attention at their teachers. 

What teachers do you remember from your childhood or high school or college? 

A teacher makes himself respected by his or her students if he or she are serious, constant, persevering, fair, coherent, comprehensive, hard-working, finding out their study problems, a bit like a dad or a mom although demanding, and dressed correctly and nice too. / Photo from: profesora de escuela. comparabien com co

Saturday, July 5, 2014

1840. Do you know what your vocation is?


According to Spanish Doctor Manuel Álvarez Romero we’re happy when we fulfill the labor and vocation for which we’ve been born. 

Man and woman have to find their personal vocation, in order to follow it. This has to do with our job, ok, but as well with our family, our friends and colleagues, everybody. 

I would say that for teaching you must have a strong professional vocation, right? 

As well there’s a supernatural vocation from God, which usually has to do with our job. We have to invest our talent in that vocation, whichever level you refer to. Anyway all are aspects of a single vocation: mine, yours. 

They make us up as happy people, though we can have problems – does anyone not have any? I know a kid that was very poor concerning studies. Now he’s working as a condominium caretaker and he does so well. / Photo from: caretakers. www a1housing co uk