Thursday, April 30, 2015

2289. Love to childhood



A characteristic of many teachers, maybe most of them, is love of benevolence toward each and every student. 

This feature makes the teacher go beyond his established duties. He or she wishes all the best for their students. 

It has to do with love to childhood and adolescence. The teacher wishes the best for his students, and is concerned about their topics and all that has to do with those ages. 

In other words he is capable of being interested in their students’ issues and in all that has to do with them all: their families, their games, adolescents’ crises – crisis means change. The teacher gets worried and engaged with their students’ stuff, and tries to call up their families to set a close relationship. / Photo from: tutor www bbc co uk

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

2288. Grown-ups can also acquire the target language



Obviously adults can learn a language. 

However, can they acquire a language? 

Scholar H. Douglas Brown, from San Francisco State University, states a great Yes. 

I expose my students to a lot of aural English, and now, when the end of the year is coming, I can definitely say they can acquire the language. 

Besides they make daily presentations or comments or describing pictures from a magazine. Thus they’re using the language, even before and after the class, just because they like, naturalistically. / Photo from: headsup boyslife org. Rushmore Mountain with the effigies of Washington, Roosevelt, Lincoln and… Jefferson? Any comments are welcome.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

2287. A practical activity to recommend



Yesterday I handed out the script of a listening to my adult students. 

We had listened to the CD of First Certificate for several times and days. 

So a female student suggested me to photocopy the script. 

Before listening to it again, I let them have a look at the written text, in case they had any question about vocabulary. 

Reading and listening served us for the purpose of further discussion, so we made good use of the available time. All this is an activity worth to recommend. The topic was an accident at Niagara Falls. / Photo from: www youtube com

Monday, April 27, 2015

2286. Father and son



Free time is not for just doing nothing. 

Parents can think their teen son or daughter are good: they don’t smoke joints [sorry], they don’t drink, they don’t have sex relationships. He’s a nice kid. 

By the way, the last thing I wrote, about what a teen may not be doing, we must be careful about – we may think he or she doesn’t do anything that has to do with that, but we don’t know their friends, classmates, so let’s be careful about this point (and the others alike). 

Besides we’re their parents, we should have won them as friends too. 

I mean, parents should listen to their kids, because all they tell is important to them, and also because we may win hints about what they do – you, moms, are like good psychologists, and may have intuitions; namely my teen son may have fallen in love with a girl, or more worrying yet, she can have intuitions about their son: he likes guys, and now it’s the moment to act, right now. 

We might count on a good reputation psychiatrist. / Photo from: www corbisimages com

Sunday, April 26, 2015

2285. Keeping a diary of learning. A nice tip



Expert and scholar and great H. D. Brown, of San Francisco State University, recommended to keep a diary of learning a language. 

The student would report or just scribble his progress, 
what turns out good, 
frustrations, 
new ways of approaching vocabulary, 
advice by the teacher… And he could read it from time to time, so as to get a general and also punctual vision of how he’s getting along. 

Thus I join the scholar to recommend you or whoever to try to do it. / Photo from: Horse-Riding-Beach healthhitnessrevolution com. the photo tries to be a nice illustration, just that

2284. With the brilliance of sport



My adult students have a level of English at basic or intermediate. The span is high, and their levels too. 

However I can speak in English all the class-period. 

If I were entrusted a more basic level and false beginners, I definitely would carry on speaking in English I think, but at a lower level, more slowly, more aiding the class with the whiteboard, with simpler worksheets… but the point is that I would speak in English, and would try to overwhelm the temptation of using Spanish. / Photo from: cycling4 competitorgroup com

2283. An example of happiness



Many people think happiness is for other people, for instance, wealthy people, successful ones, attractive ones, etc. 

And they connect happiness with special things or circumstances: I shall be happy after these examinations, with another profession, with another wife, etc. 

And they don’t know how to reach happiness in regular circumstances and days. 

And happiness will be reached when they decide not to be happy, otherwise when they give themselves to their family, and friends, and students, and God, ultimately. 

In this way they likely could reach some level of happiness. 

Now I’m telling an extreme case. One day a reporter said to Theresa of Calcutta: I wouldn’t do what you do though I would be given a million dollars. Theresa’s answer was: neither would I. / Photo from: popeandteresa redelapaz bligoo cl

Saturday, April 25, 2015

2282. The importance of communication today



Today I’ve been to a conference on journalism and for reporters. 

Just I would like to pinpoint the importance of communication. 

These conferences take place every year in a colegio mayor or college residence. / Photo from: boring-lecture www michaelmccuny net. This photo is just for fun

Friday, April 24, 2015

2281. Communication only in the target language



On the previous post I wrote about communication in classes. 

This one can also be carried out for your daily announcements to your students and logistics, for example about dates, dead locks, setting dates for tests, etc., say, naturalistic conducting. 

The whiteboard can be a useful aid. / Photo from: old ambulance

2280. Fostering communication in class



Is there communication in classes in the target language (English)? 

We can measure and evaluate the value of a class of a language according to the quantity and quality of communication in English in that class. 

The first premise is the teacher should say everything in English or 95% more or less. 

Try to foster communication from the textbook or the worksheets you compose for your students. After a unit, for example, try to discuss the contents of that unit. / Photo from: T-on-desk-talking-to-class imgkid com

Thursday, April 23, 2015

2279. Thanks to TeacherLingo

Thanks a lot for publishing my posts. A very intersting web site for your blog, or for sending and purchasing material for classes. 

2278. Implementing listening in classes



I forgot to say on post # 2277 that a student has offered herself to make photocopies of the scripts of the CD’s, because she has the books, the books of First Certificate of Cambridge – equivalent to B2 in the Common European Framework. 

There are three letters, A, B and C, and each letter has two levels, 1 and 2. The highest level is C2. / Photo from: listen-music-student-girl study com

2277. How to foster listening. A case



Something I lately implement in my classes is a suggestion by my adult students. They told me we could listen to a CD in English. 

We have started. They understand each oral text more and more. 

I hadn’t planned this at the beginning of the academic year, but it’s ok. 

We foster aural activities, namely listening and speaking. So the point is to have them speaking in English. 

Sometimes one student defines a word from the worksheets I compose for them. Or they summarize a story I write, by turns all the class – now I have some twelve students. 

Other times they describe pictures from a magazine with plenty of photos. 

Things are going rather smooth, and the remaining time of the annual course will be dedicated chiefly to aural activities. / Photo from: www educationalmedialic com

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

2276. How to turn work into something gratifying



A teacher cannot be just expecting a nice weekend and let workdays pass. 

I mean, he oughtn’t to spend workdays as something boring and as a burden to dodge if possible, and just focus on the weekend. This is impoverishing. 

He has to live work as something gratifying. Yes but How? 

One premise is to strive to fulfill his labor by doing his best: planning the class, loving his students with love of benevolence, trying new ways, discarding what doesn’t work, focusing on each student as much as possible, trespassing his obligations and doing further, giving a transcendent stroke, offering that work and those efforts to God, asking Him for help. 

I HAVE seen all this in some colleagues, regular teachers though. / Photo from: Joel-Saavedra-profesor-Instituto-de-Física-PUCV www vriea ucv cl

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

2275. When the teen age arrives



I believe Spanish expert Antonio Vázquez is absolutely reliable. 

He says that nothing we do and nothing we say, for our kids’ education, keeps fruitless. Albeit we might think otherwise. 

Let’s face up education of our children and students with this positive point of view. 

So always something remains, and more when we know how to understand and comprehend our teens or whatever age they are; when we face up with things with affection, though the kid looks a little terrorist. / Photo from: teens1 growingup com mx

2274. A practical activity and fruitful



A practical activity that has to do with memory, grammar, understanding a text, retrieving information, reading for the gist, reading about details or points, vocabulary, etc., is to provide a story you teacher have invented and made up, or from their textbook. 

The students have, say, 5 or 7 minutes to read and try to memorize a text. 

Afterward, they close the book or turn the sheet upside down, and they try to copy as much as possible, from their recalling. 

It’s a very instructive exercise, which fosters and boosts some sub-skills. / Photo from: the-old-rectory-main www tripadvisor co uk. The photo is just an illustration for my blog

2273. Violence at school



Yesterday I wrote the following. 

Today, April 20, a high school teacher from Spain has been murdered by a student with a knife and a bow. 

It’s an extreme case, but as real as I work as a teacher. 

It’s an exception, nonetheless. What to say about this? Violence at schools happens from time to time. 

What I can plainly say is that also, at that time, I was teaching a polite and nice group of adults, with which I get along, thank God. Well, someone can say, it is adults whom you teach, so what? I can also say adult students can be more critical than teens, who absorb, or may absorb, what their teacher tells them. Adults can be sharper in their critics, but if you invest effort and affection, they do their best, it is my experience, also with teens. 

You can collect their proposals too, for classes. / Photo from: the-old-rectory-main www tripadvisor co uk

Monday, April 20, 2015

2272. How to manage a teen yet by respecting his freedom



Teens can change their mood and character pretty soon and frequently, and so their parents and the rest of the family can feel distressed, and not knowing what to do. 

They, teens, need loneliness, with their writings, their music, their room… What to do? 

Well, I don’t know, let me think; first premise: do not lose your temper, if you’re a parent – “parent” sounds cold: I shall say dad or mom. 

He or she (the teen) may want to cut loose, BUT he or she needs you, family, and more and more he or she will wish to stay at home. Years before the teen wished to escape; nowadays he or she could wish to escape, but he or she wishes to stay at home, which can be a cozy place, at best. / Photo from: jure-robic-tragicky-zahynul_1. The picture is just to illustrate the text

2271. Youngsters lack values. Much of this is true



Tradition of a country, or traditions of that country: this is what textbooks and we teachers should pass on to our students. 

What the student learns is within a tradition. 

Think of Christian tradition in our western countries. To ignore this is a serious lack of knowledge. 

In the 19th century missionaries went to Africa to talk and preach about Jesus Christ, but currently this Person can be not known by our students, and they miss the four gospels for example, and treating himself. 

Someone said that we Christians can bear more burden of life and suffer dire straits better than a person with no religion. / Photo from: explorers halfdesertedstreets com

2270. Also students are protagonists of practical things



There’s a peril and danger for teachers of languages: to talk too much, either in the mother language or in English, the target language. 

Encourage your students by having them speaking in English, and gently praise their contributions. 

I’ve written about this point yet, but it’s very important: even us teachers will get amazed for the results. / Photo from: gingerbreadgoodday blogspot com

Sunday, April 19, 2015

2269. Why American English?



Some people ask me why my English is American, while in Spain the British variety is well seen, and the American English is considered as not English, by many people, more or less. 

Well, I will let you know tomorrow about this point. 

Or better said, why not right now? 

Look, I’ve trained and coached mostly American university students who have come to Spain to teach English in summer or in winter. 95% of the youngsters I’ve trained are from the USA, and that’s it. 

Thus I feel better with American English, I do not discard British English though. I studied my degree in British English, here in Spain, namely Philology of English. / Photo from: US flag in the classroom of a Christmas Story 1983

2268. Don't interrupt his speech



When some student is speaking in the target language (English) for rather long, you teacher can correct him a few errors and mistakes, but let him go on by speaking in English. 

Do not stop it. Do not interrupt him. Although he commits mistakes and errors. / Photo from: TYWLS

Saturday, April 18, 2015

2267. Thanks to USA and Russia: two giants



Just thanks to both USA and Russia for your abundant views. 

Are you really interested in the topics or are you kinda spying…? I was kidding; thank you again. At your entire disposal. 

What I know is that unfortunately all the views are not persons but sort of robots or programs. 

Anyway, I know many people view my blog – the only interest is for you to be a useful blog, for novel teachers as well as for veterans or for any user. / Photo from: trabajo-feliz www asisomosnosotras com

2266. From chastity to happiness



Chastity takes you to happiness, because it puts order into your life, and takes you with a clean body and soul to marriage. 

It makes you strong enough to bear that happy life: you dominate your body and emotions. You are free. / Photo from: www teachingenglish org uk

2265. Why live chastity?



Holy chastity is more than just sexual continence. 

It’s part of the virtue of temperance, which rules our tendencies to the goodness of the person and his relationships with other people. 

You can only live chastity with God’s grace, with God’s help. So ask him for it! He’s prone to concede it. 

Chastity and purity take you to happiness; what happens is that our concupiscence has been hurt since our first parents' sin, plus our personal guilt and subsequent sins.

Nonetheless chastity is a virtue you can achieve to live, as many spouses and single people do. / Photo from: grownortho com

2264. We need a reliable teacher, let's suppose



Reliable teachers. That’s what we need, as a school. 

A teacher may be a rookie, but… what could we do, because the students try to put the teacher to the test… 

The only way I know is either something innate in the teacher or time passing, years passing, experience. 

And of course the teacher has to donate himself to his “audience”. He must feel tired after a class, because he gave himself to their dear students. 

I do know the students, as I said, tend to put to the test a teacher who is a rookie. 

However if the teacher struggles to do his or her best, more likely, with time passing, the students will respect him or her, because of their seriousness and gravity. / Photo from: 615_300_Teacher www theatlantic com

2263. Just smile! It's better for you and for others



In a school joy is pretty important. Joy with discipline, of course. 

Joy, happiness, excitement, entertainment, amusement, being glad, satisfied, etc., are necessary at school. 

This is not against rigor in studying and learning and teaching. Rigor and smiling are compatible, no doubt. 

Joy too tends to unite and join people. 

Man and woman are social beings, right? And joy unites people, as I said. In a nice way: respect, listening to others, helping others, talking together, getting together, solidarity. / Photo from: IMG_4705 smiling kid pixshark com

Friday, April 17, 2015

2262. Warmers are necessary



Dictation is also a way to keep our students silent and attentive. 

They get focused on what they’re writing. 

It can be a pretty good warmer for the beginning of the class. / Photo from: Person-Writing-with-Pen-Panopto-Flipped-Classroom-Software-smaller panoplo com

2261. Universals are educative?



Beauty and beautiful things can be educative to our students. 

They have to learn to appreciate and evaluate “beautiful” things. Beauty, truth, goodness… are universals that are educative for our kids. And very profound. / Photo from: April_2006_Paris_Day_4aj_Louvre_Venus_de_Milo_Jason pixshark com

2260. I'm a regular teacher

And I'm open-minded to all people, to everybody.

2259. I am Christian and very happy



Thank you very much for your attention and your following my blog, fellows. / Photo from: Christian_School_Logo_Chalkboard_Girl_2012 www pathbaptistchristianacademy com

Thursday, April 16, 2015

2258. Human sexuality from a clean and happy view



Holy purity and holy chastity. It is when they’re adolescents when they discover sex. 

However maybe their parents have never told them about it. 

And sex springs in the spring of adolescence. 

Teachers ought not to be the first people to talk about human sexuality, which was “invented” by God for human beings to settle all over the world. It is something good: it’s us, people, the ones that we have put human sex under other vices when it is not lived in a clean way. 

A boyfriend and his girlfriend have a marvelous period in front of them to get to know the other, with austerity of human affections: they have to respect the other, who possibly will become the dad or the mom of the family. 

Well, all this and much more can be taught by their parents. 

The point is for youngsters to have a clean and beautiful vision of sex. / Photo from: studentscareercoach wordpress com

2257. How to implement a Listening activity



If you’re a teacher of English or other languages, and want to implement a Listening activity, you can either make a Lead-in previous activity, or just play the Listening. 

I have practiced both: students knew the context, or the students knew nothing about what they were going to encounter. 

Both possibilities have their pros and cons, but both are interesting. / Photo from: woman_listening www einsteinhubjuu com

2256. Keep up listening, again and again



For listening and understanding some sub-skills can be productive and useful: try to understand some words, 
try to construct the gist, 
relate with previous knowledge, 
with similar words in your mother language, 
with the context, 
join together the words you understand, 
listen to the text several times, 
get focused, 
imagine up the scene, etc. / Photo from: listening articles bplans com

2255. Listen, listen and listen: you'll improve



Some students tell me the language skill that is more difficult for them is Listening. 

You know what? Me too! and I have a C2 level of English. 

Well, I assume that it’s a matter of practicing, practicing, and, believe me, you get a better ear with time passing. 

So be patient and worry not too much. Learning a language is something marvelous – I keep learning and acquiring English, albeit I’ve spent more than 35 years with that magnificent task. / Photo from: listening familybusinessinstitute com

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

2254. Be watchful and aware!!



A serious peril and danger we teachers of English or other languages may have is to accumulate and speak too much we ourselves, and not let our students to speak more. 

It’s so because it is much simpler for us to speak in the target language than let and make our students speak further. 

So let’s be aware of this peril and danger, and proceed in the right way. / Photo from: harold-lloyd magazineactivo wordpress com

2253. We can count on a special aid...



Whenever you have to solve a human and humane issue that can affect persons, I would recommend you to enter a church and spend some time by talking about that problem or decision you have got to take, in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is in the tabernacle, in Eucharist. 

You talk, He also talks (with nothing special or strange). / Photo from: praying-girl-church www piks com

2252. Thanks to Antonio José Alcalá

Thanks to Antonio José Alcalá for his interesting comment to post # 2222. A brotherly hug, Antonio.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

2251. What's the ideal teacher like?



Nassif states the qualities and features a teacher must have:
1.   A tendency to assist children. It’s kind of love of benevolence. It implies a capability of psychological analysis and penetration of kids’ way of being.
2.   A tendency toward values. The teacher has to love the values he tries to pass on to his students.
3.   A clear and defined personality.
4.   Sense of humor.

As well the teacher should have:
a.   A good knowledge and acquaintance of his students.
b.   Patience, being nice and benevolent.
c.   A firm character.
d.   Objectivity to assist every student and not only some of them.
e.   A good knowledge of what he teaches.
f.     A capability to manage the class.

Spanish expert Julio Gallego Codes adds:
1.   A capability to have his students participate in their education process.
2.   A capability of making tasks and homework easier and simpler.
3.   Joyful.
4.   To know how to foster each student’s learning according to the way they are.
5.   To facilitate an atmosphere prone to contributions.
6.   Flexible and tolerant.
7.   To stimulate diverse ways of his students’ expressions.


/ Photo from: TEFL-teacher-board www bridgetefl com