Wednesday, August 31, 2016

2967. Can We Naturally Acquire A Language?

Many people think adults cannot learn nor acquire a foreign or a second language. They would be too old and their minds would be too hard to acquire the language, even to learn it!
Whereas teens would have a flexible mind which is capable of an easier naturalistic acquisition of the language. They’re able to acquire the language, while adults in no way can learn and even less acquire the language.
We’ve seen in this blog that expert scholar H. D. Brown said a qualified yes in favor of the point that adults can also acquire a language and not merely learn it.
So you reader, if a grown-up, you must bear in mind that you can acquire any language and not only learn it.
Learning would be a more artificial thing and acquiring would be more natural.
As well some people say that adults are losing their memory more and more, which seems to be true. But they on their favor know how to plan and program their learning and acquiring process.
Teens still have to learn how to program and plan their work and studying.
In other words, they have to mature their learning and acquiring process, whereas adults can do so easily, and they’re more persevering at their process, plus the fact that usually the adults who embark in such an enterprise are pretty motivated.
Summing up, adults can learn but also acquire a foreign or a second language. / Photo from: just an adult. scartborough com

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

2966. Are You Free?

We may have an idea of freedom and liberty as when for example somebody is lying on a green prairie with nobody else trying to overwhelm him in any way.
Or at sea, in a vessel with her sails swelled by fresh wind. Those can be scenes we may have seen in movies or literature or in our own dreams – who didn’t ever dream sometime to escape from this hectic and rush rhythm urban society and flee to nature?
However the real freedom we can experience is at everyday things: I’m free if I decide to do something or to refuse to do something else.
Okay then, real freedom is when we choose goodness and what’s good, for us and for anybody else. Then, precisely and just then, I’m doing something freely.
And to choose evil, isn’t that freedom? Well you may think of it: I may choose evil or something good otherwise. When I choose what’s good I’m fulfilling myself. Then I’m following the “manual instructions” to fulfill myself.
We can choose whatever we like but only when doing what is good we are following our manual instructions. Nobody can fulfill himself against the truth about himself.
If I follow the truth about myself, without any argument about it only then can I reach happiness, as Nietzsche himself put it, in Die Unschuld des Werdens, Leipzig 1930 (posthumous), page 84 – to be honest I’ve copied that latter idea from German scholar Jutta Burggraf (2006). / Photo from: www lifehack org

Monday, August 29, 2016

2965. Awesome, Just Awesome!

I’ve noticed something that can be useful for some readers.
I usually try to learn one, or two, or three words every day, or I read a novel, or I read non-fiction... And I’m aware of that process, okay: I’m learning and acquiring new-to-me words.
And fortunately I have a trained memory, which is able to retain those words. Well, and now it comes: often I note that I can retrieve words I had learned and acquired unconsciously and in an unaware way sometime.
I “invent” words when I write these blog posts. They’re words I have learned and acquired, like I said, inadvertently.
I think all this has to do with something kind of the sense of language, which an English language teacher we had told us when we were at our secondary education. In other words, it’s a way of thinking in English, because I don’t translate those words into my mother tongue.
Even there’re quite many words I can’t translate into Spanish, my mother language, but I can use them in English: I’m reading a novel, I’m writing a new post, I use them when I’m speaking in English with a friend of mine…
Even sometimes I take a risk when using some words I guess they exist in English, and Word program corrector tells me they are English. Where do those words come from? I’d say both from my aware and conscious studying plus that unconscious learning and acquiring. And all this may happen to ANY learner. See you. / Photo from: first women join submarine crew www thetimes co uk. the picture is just an illustration, a nice one

2964. About Teens' Sometimes Confusion

Teens are capable, after being children, of discovering and encountering their interior lives. It’s the time when they discover themselves, in a new way, different than when they were children.
They become aware and conscious about themselves. When they were children obviously they also were self-conscious, but now they are in a very different way...
And they’re also able of having nice and high ideals, for it’s the period of those high ideals.
Because of all that said they feel unsecure and strange to themselves, even distressed sometimes.
They tend to stay rather closed to other relationships, like their parents typically. Now they want to be detached from their parents, and adults in general.
They’re more prone to be linked by friendship and they encounter themselves well with their gangs.
Parents, at this period, have to learn how to listen to them, since teens are in need of a big help, and they need sometimes to give vents to their confusion and bewilderment.
By no way do I try to show a dreadful view of teens anyway!
Also we teachers can help out a lot, because we’re the other grown-ups with whom they spend many hours during the day! / Photo from: a pensive and thoughtful girl

Sunday, August 28, 2016

2963. I Begin to Begin Again!

I have excitement because of my teaching, meeting people, treating them nice… Yes, I’ll admit it.
Yesterday I said that I would write today about enjoying teaching classes and the other teachers’ roles. Maybe it won’t be a naïve liking in teachers with so many-year experience, but a clever one: we know we’re helping youngsters.
But today I’d like to write a little about why I’m rather optimistic concerning the new school year in Spain.
Beside what I wrote above about enjoying teaching I could say that I trust in human potentials and in God alike (“In God we trust”, like you write on your dollar bills).
I’ve been a witness to how man and woman can endure dire straits. I also have encountered young people that have suffered big and they used to carry their sorrows with so high human dignity.
Tomorrow, if possible I will write about the intellectual potentials young people have. They can actually learn and acquire a foreign or second language. I’ve also seen this latter point, incarnated in real people. / Photo from: young-people www firstcollegelincs co uk

Saturday, August 27, 2016

2962. Back Home!

I’m having a look at the notes I compile for my blog posts. I’m going back in time, by reading what I wrote in my diary.
Now I’m about mid-July, so before my English summer camp, okay. I reckon I’ve lost the fresh ideas I had in mind when I wrote them down in my diary.
For example for today I wanted to write about the nice point that we teachers have to enjoy our work when carrying it out. More specifically I wrote about the point that we have to enjoy our professional work. I could write for long, if I thought of it for a bit longer, because I have lots to say.
But I want to publish now. 
Most of the teachers I know enjoy their work, albeit they can suffer from students misbehavior. We should like what we do at our professional work. I do enjoy it.
You know, working with people, with our students is so nice, and we can help them mature and help them at their biographies, each one at their rhythm. As well we have to consider the idea that the order amid school people regarding the attention they deserve is: parents, teachers, and students. I will say more, tentatively tomorrow. / Photo from: www rgsbstock com. the picture merely is an illustration

Thursday, August 25, 2016

2961. I Like Young People

The teacher has to become concerned about the student as an individual and as a person.
He must consider, at his daily teaching, the persons he has opposite him in the classroom. And he shall be concerned about the student as a whole, as an entire subject. This is the core point of education, isn’t it?
The teacher does not confine his labor as just teaching, but also as educating persons!
He spends quite many hours with the student during a regular day.
He will think of the way the student thinks, and also about his biography, his individuality, his uniqueness, his traits, the way he learns. The best teacher is the one that likes the youth and all about them, plus a paramount point about young people: they are in need of assistance and help, because they are growing and going through growing-up crises. He likes and regards young people’s characteristics and their juvenile brush-strokes. / Photo from: student-at-public-library-1300x867 digilite am

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

2960. Back to Classes with Grown-Ups

In some way, in some great way I’m quite excited with the beginning of the school year, albeit classes proper start in September or even in October, this latter case for college students and adults.
I’m looking forward to meeting with my students again, both grown-ups and kids alike.
All that entails more practice by me at using English, for example in an oral way. My students are pretty motivated, by the way.
Also that’ll mean we shall leave this present season, summer, which is being hot, and refreshing in nice fall. Each season has its things I like, and others I don’t so much. But all is okay with me anyway.  / Photo from: www smc com. Elderly students at computer class. the picture shows a class for grown-ups

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

2959. I Will Read The Book Again

Spanish educator and teacher of teachers Tomás Alvira (1906-1992) used to have dinner with all his family. I’ve written about him before.
Now I’m writing that he arranged things for his family to have dinner together and thus they could have a nice opportunity and chance for the kids to talk about what they had learned each day, plus they told about their friends, teachers, anecdotes.
He was a man that knew how to listen to, which is such an important characteristic of us teachers.
At those conversations he could educate their children too, and his wife Paquita also knew how to listen to them all.
Their house atmosphere had an authentic personality, and it was a nice place where they all could learn from one another. At home, at cozy and sweet home there were tidiness, order, affection, a nice taste: it was a house where they all wanted to arrive at after daily labor.
Their home and their style showed their rich interior life.
Last summer I read a biography about Tomás Alvira, and also about his wife Paquita, and written by teacher and educator and father Antonio Vázquez. It’s a must-read. Published by Spanish Palabra. Also the way they both dressed was a stroke of their interior lives. / Photo from: feelgrafix com. The picture tries to be a beautiful summer illustration

Sunday, August 21, 2016

2958. How to Involve Kids in Cleaning Chores

The order and tidiness of our classrooms will educate our students, and that’s for sure!
Even we could say to one of our students to tidy up a classroom which is in a mess, when we both pass by one that way. We can arrange it together, and so we teachers set an example.
When the classroom is neat and clean and ordered we can feel a bit of satisfaction.
Besides order and tidiness help discipline and class management. Even more if we have our students sitting nice, at classes.
Desks should be set in straight rows and columns so we get a rectangle of desks. Before the bell sounds, we can have our students tidy up the classroom.
As well the classroom noticeboard should show up clean and from time to time posters and students’ projects will be removed and replaced by other notices and other posters.
Remember we can deliver small jobs or chores to our students and some shall be in charge of the order of the classroom, or the students themselves could suggest their chores from a list. A place that way, as I said, is very educative. Kids like those small jobs and they grow and mature with them!
/ Photo from: Involving-Kids-in-Daily-Cleaning-Chores mortinlounge com

Saturday, August 20, 2016

2957. We Teachers Facilitate Communication

We English language teachers or other foreign or second language teachers facilitate communication among people, don’t we? Think of it! Just think of it for a moment.
We make communication to be something feasible and possible. We curtail and pull down frontiers between people, between persons. The frontiers of “strange” languages I mean, not the positive and necessary borders among people concerning privacy and politeness, which should exist always.
This kind of communication we make as possible is something we can also try to accomplish within and inside classes and so in the very classroom itself.
Communication should be human. I mean, communication should be authentic and genuine.
I’m going to propose something for my classes and for your classes. Let’s say messages and announcements in the target language too. If it didn’t work, okay, let’s change into our mother language, but at least let’s give it a try…
I will do it myself, in English, which is our common target language: both they and I are learning and acquiring English as a foreign language – we live in Spain.
I make this firm resolution right now. If that piece of communication is possible, we will have gained a great deal! Otherwise we could confine communication to the activities the textbook proposes, but I prefer that communication be in English, the target language, all the class long. / Photo from: business communication www incedogroup com. now I was thinking about a field we teachers can facilitate with our teaching: businesses, international businesses!

Friday, August 19, 2016

2956. When Your Children Learn and Acquire A Language

“They don’t know it, but they’re learning!” said David, a gentle veteran teacher at our summer camp, some weeks ago. I liked it.
It had been the first class day, and they had been playing to guess who the celebrity was. It’s a guessing game, a fun one, which makes the students ask the teacher questions about a celeb they have to guess.
What I liked the most was that those kids (teens) were actually learning, nearly or fully inadvertently! It’s the summit of learning and acquiring a foreign or second language!
However I also like when students may recognize they’re really learning.
Infants (“infant” means “the one that cannot speak, in-fant = no-speak”, so babies or even very young children) acquire the mother language from their moms, and dads too, but I reckon that chiefly from their moms.
Otherwise try to observe how moms repeat the same message or just a phrase to their dearest babies, like they were playing with those infants. Try to listen to moms talking to their babies at the park or along the sidewalk, whenever you can: it's interesting, if you're a language teacher.
In some good schools I know they teach English to infants too, and sometimes they play classic music, and other times they repeat words like for example colors, and thus babies learn there’re two ways to call a color: “red” and “rojo” (in Spanish). / Photo from: www schoolatoz edu au. I was thinking that adorable girl might be a child that can already speak, but the website said she was learning a foreign language: okay!

Thursday, August 18, 2016

2955. Like The Struggle of Athlets at Rio 2016

The efficiency of the school labor also depends on the love I invest when I am at work.
I have to put and invest love at little everyday details and other little things, such as the way I’m dressed, the class I’ve planned, the tidiness of my desk, the way the chalkboard has been erased… all in order to get the most of the class-periods!
Teaching has something of a fine art!
Effectiveness and efficiency depend on my interior life, as well than on the love I have to God, who at the same time has a love and affection and tenderness to us like the one all dads and moms together. Also obviously that depends on my professional effort.
If my interior life is plentiful of love, don’t worry, for things shall turn out okay, soon or rather later, but they shall, and the students shall notice that love.
I’ve also seen this along my career as a teacher, in other teachers.
Here I don’t mean, don’t get me wrong, that students and teachers’ efficiency don’t depend on their effort and struggle at classes in order to work fine.
If I take care of those details, classes shall turn out better... / Photo from: US Charles Austin, one of the best Olympians. www charlesaustin net. Olympians have to eat a specific diet and take care of little things, don’t they?

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

2954. Rio 2016: Connecting People!

If you’re a second or foreign language teacher, have you ever thought of the beautiful labor we carry out?: connecting people, connecting singular persons!
We are connecting people from all over the world, and not less than that!
And we’re connecting biographies, singular traits, believes, cultures, generations, time periods… If there weren’t such teachers, Rio Olympic Games wouldn’t be possible, because those people have learned the language with a teacher’s help, haven’t they?
And as I said, we’re getting people together and they all can share experiences, lives, families… Communication is the art of transmitting and sharing ideas, knowledge and all that I’ve said before!
Yesterday or a couple days ago I put all my labels or tags from my blog into a cloud where those labels are shown according to the frequency they appear along the blog. It's the right column below my profile: have a peek at it: I got amazed myself! / Photo from: www omicrono com 

Monday, August 15, 2016

2953. Like in Rio Olympic Games

We teachers want our students be hard-working and with values about learning and behaving well, don’t we? We would like for our students to have studying and learning and working habits, right?
Okay, those operative good habits are gained by simple repetition of actions. As simple as that.
The kid for example that sets himself to study at the arranged time one day after another, he will have the operative habit and custom of working hard, won’t he? He will learn how to head for his daily homework, and by applying accurate learning strategies he will learn and acquire English or whatever language we are dealing with: Spanish, French, German…
So either at tutoring sessions or at big groups that student will be told how to set up at daily work at home.
The point is for the teacher to persuade him to operate accurately.
If you give good ideas at classes about learning and learning strategies the high-achiever kids have, possibly those kids will adhere to working hard. Kids are kids but they may think nice! 
Something we can apply here too is the psychology of TV and Internet adds: repetition, repetition, repetition of the same ideas. They hit on the right target! / Photo from: Rio Olympic Games. Athletes may make good results and records. As you well know they’ve trained and practiced for long, once and over and over

Sunday, August 14, 2016

2952. How to Relax if You Are A Teacher

We teachers face up with many problems, right?
I would tell you we should take the drama out of the situation, we should defuse the small or big crisis or conflict.
Someone told me once we have to learn how to laugh gently about ourselves! How so? By exaggerating the situation: kind of “This is the end, this is terrible, I am at the worst situation ever, ever…”
This is a sort of laughing at oneself. Some psychiatrist said if we can laugh about ourselves that might indicate we have so a sane mind.
And if we learn how to take the drama out of our problems we could take it easy!
As well some quick relaxing technique helps: it is having our legs, arms, and body like they were very heavy, better if sitting down. We have heavy legs and arms and body and we “need” to lay them down.
Also try to distend and leave your whole body as if it was so heavy. Relax the tension of your face, part by part, and then stay quiet and silent yourself, listening to the surrounding silence, or slowing your stream of thoughts. It works, believe me! / Photo from: man-reading-newspaper www sneakymag com

Saturday, August 13, 2016

2951. A Teacher I Knew

I’ve got a lot of topics lined up for posting.
Today I’m writing about a teacher I knew. He used to respect his students. He even asked a student to forgive him because he had been too hard with him in a class.
The head of the teachers suggested to do it so. At the beginning he had thought not to do it, but he pondered about it and threw out and regretted his way of treating that kid.
As he used to respect his students, more often than not, he gained his students’ respect.
He said that if a teacher treats his students delicately and he asks for forgiveness when he reckons he has failed in something, he will gain the respect from his students. / Photo from: ... Today I thank Blogger staff for letting me post for free. The picture is okay for now that we can enjoy the Olympic Games. I didn't find nice photos of the present Olympic Games

Friday, August 12, 2016

2950. Do You Enjoy to Read? I Do!

We may think that what we have read for our formation as teachers and educators (as parents too!) has not served the purpose of helping us to learn how to become a good teacher, a good educator (a good dad or mom too!). But yes, they have!
If we re-read those texts we may think we have forgotten them, but the point is that they educate us: every reading leaves a track or trace or footprint, which we assimilate as something of ours. That’s the point, definitely.
Those readings influence positively in us, if they're good readings.
They are educating us and making a store of good ideas, which give our labor a personal streak. I also have seen this, in my case, and also – and this is something we all can see – in other people’s lives, haven’t we? / Photo from: Emerald-Lake-canoeing www hellobc com. the picture is a nice one, for illustration sake, I hope you like it! It's very much of the summer season

Thursday, August 11, 2016

2949. A Teacher like A Choir Conductor?

I was thinking a few weeks ago, at the vacation English camp, when I was watching the teachers' work, that if the teacher takes his work as a serious thing, and also important for him and for his students and for their families alike, how is he not going to expect a hard work from his students?
He will expect a lot, or he should do it so!
All this can be explained to his students in an explicit way in order to get them as well focused on their particular work as students.
Also the teacher will pass on this idea to his students, with just getting immersed on his own labor.
The teacher, let’s suppose, works a lot and well, okay, his students actually will notice all this, and so this effort is passed on to his students, as I said. / Photo from: Columbus Indiana Children’s Choir. Also I was thinking that teaching a class is like conducting a choir – the more the teacher strives to teach well the more his students might strive, perhaps not like a choir but they shall be on the right pathway to excellence! I’ve seen it! – Puri, thank you very much for your comment. Which number did you comment on?

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

2948. How Nice Was Studying A Book!

I think we teachers may run the risk of getting lost among many methodology discussion points.
Once I was talking with another teacher and I told him about a pair of students of mine, maybe some of the students I was the tutor of. This was a nice number of years ago. And that experienced teacher just told me they just needed to study harder, to study more, and that’s it.
In my case I might be trying to apply many theories to their case, and the other teacher opened my eyes to something that simple!
And it’s true: so often our students may be in need of applying more effort, take their textbooks or tablets and right sit down at a silent place at home and focus on their books.
If they study with accurate techniques and they spend rather a long time with their books they can improve a lot – just think of when we were students: if we wanted to learn we took an effort at studying more, and in that way also we got good grades, didn’t we? And studying was so nice: learning about history and how our ancestors lived, or how to solve a math problem, or how to write in English with a correct spelling. / Photo from: Carlson www npr org

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

2947. My Students' Things as Mine

We teachers should make our students’ things like they were of ours: their joys and sorrows.
Also because I have seen this incarnated in some grand teachers and educators.
Because of that we have to learn how to carefully listen to them.
Now I’m thinking of a student of mine, of last school year. I felt I had to listen to him – they were private tuition. I noticed he was talking about rather some trifles or unimportant things for classes themselves.
However I had to listen to him, and his things were important for him, so as well they should be important for me too.
I don’t mean we had to talk about nonsense stuff, so I had to change the conversation if I noted he wanted to just waste time of the class or the kind. I focus on that point anyway: his things should be mine as well, and thus I had to bear them in mind and take charge of them myself.
I repeat it on purpose: I had to change the discourse if he wanted to lose class time. He is a smart kid anyway.
By the way I haven’t been writing for rather long and now I feel my style is not kind of as good as it was, many weeks ago – my style was the one of a non-native speaker anyway. Well, here we are: patience, good humor and sorry for the mistakes, nice readers! / Photo from: www studentachievement org. I was thinking... in case of girls of course we have to be prudent.

Monday, August 8, 2016

2946. Helping Our Students in Their Back-to-School

I’ve been writing about discipline and class management, in case those tips would be of any interest for you readers, is that okay? And it’s an important point, definitely.
But also we teachers should consider that in cases of misbehavior, if we have applied all the methods we have at hand to create a nice hard-working atmosphere, we should not care too much. On the next class we shall try again.
So we can think in view of any misbehavior case: so what? It’s their business.
I don’t mean we shouldn’t care about our students and our classes, and you know this, but we should keep thinking of those problems as something of the students’ concern.
We lose nothing: they’re free to behave as they like, coming to an ultimate vision of our classes. If they don’t obey, they will in the near future.
We should stay easy, relaxed and tranquil. They will improve, because of our close concern about them and their learning process, plus our affection to them! / Photo from: slideplayer com

Sunday, August 7, 2016

2945. Grand Teachers!

Teachers are persons who love, who must love, as any other human person, with love of benevolence, which is to wish and seek what’s good for the other persons.
Thus the teacher should bear in mind, take interest about, take care of, take charge of, the things of the parents, the teachers, and the students – in this precise order: parents, teachers, and students.
In that way things will go rather smooth at the school!
In Spanish we have an idiom, which shows well what I intend to say: “hacerse cargo de”. I’ve learned about this from teacher of teachers and educator of educators Spanish Tomás Alvira (1906-1992), in a biography on him I’ve read this summer.
He for example took charge of his students’ things and concerns because he loved them, and he loved them because he used to take charge of their things. And all this inspired and showed a prestige and authority and affection worth of taking into account. / Photo from: womanthenest com

Saturday, August 6, 2016

2944. How to Pacify A Class of Students

The best discipline is self-discipline: the student focuses and concentrates his effort on learning and working nice.
Also concerning discipline the one the teacher imposes and proposes is thorough: I’m referring to the gravity he passes on and transmits and shows.
The teacher does have gravity and seriousness. And with that inherent discipline he pacifies a class of students.
All this stuff has to do with the teacher’s prestige and experience of years and years, and the students notice this nice feature and quality of his, as they notice a rookie and novice teacher.
He pacifies even with his mere looking at them, whilst combing the class-group with that looking at them.
Alike rather than getting exasperated by his students’ misbehavior and lack of interest toward learning and acquiring the English language he feels rather piety and pity because the students he loves so much with love of benevolence are losing time.
He loves every and each student, with a kind love of benevolence – willing what’s good for his students.
I’ve seen all this is some teachers I’ve encountered in my career as a teacher. Awesome! / Photo from: man teaching www blackenterprise com

Friday, August 5, 2016

2943. Treating My Students in A Nice Way

In the past English language course I noticed that something that coerces, something that nicely and gently coerces or obliges students to behave nice is just smiling at them!
I guess that there’s a feeling of affection and love of benevolence toward my students plus the fact that I conduct myself in a serious way. When that atmosphere is created among my dear students a smile can mean more than just obliging them to behave in a nice way.
They feel addressed and appealed by the smile!
I’ve got to say that this happened at that vacations course when I met a student at the large school hall. I think anyway it may work when the class atmosphere is nice and prompting at working rather hard – I believe it’s so! / Photo from: gibraltar caves traveloppa com. the picture is just an illustration

Thursday, August 4, 2016

2942. I Am Going to Try to Post Again!

Oooops! I’m gonna try to post often. It’s not simple to do it, but I’ll try punctually. Every day.
The point is that I’ve been compiling lots of notes in my diary, and now I would like to post them, for they could help some of you readers.
I’ve been assisting at a summer camp with English classes, and the teens gave me a lot of inspiration to write about their so interesting way of being and conducting.
Just I tell you now that the course was awesome! I can also say I’ve learned a lot from them and from my colleagues. See you soon! The picture above shows a French village, and I liked to post it here.