The Power of Poetry
I’ve just been to my son’s end-of-year show and have come away inspired, as he has been throughout this transformational year – his second year of primary school.
We were taken on a whirlwind tour of all the things they have learnt. They recited poems they had written, including a brilliant oneRead More
Idioms and proverbs – as easy as pie?
Idioms are a funny thing – it’s only once you start learning idioms in a foreign language that you realise just how bizarre they are, even if they used to sound perfectly normal in your own language. For example, the French version of our English “To count one’s chickens before theyRead More
It’s been estimated that by the year 2100 only 50% of today’s languages will be alive! Although it may seem like a long way to go, the pace at which the extinction of the languages is happening is rather alarming. We may not notice it at once but with the disappearanceRead More
Preserving language, new and old
It is estimated that within the next 200 years, around half of the 6000 languages currently spoken around the world today will become extinct. One linguist in America is trying to preserve or rather revive an extinct language of Papua New Guinea, Arapesh, by using a much more modernRead More
Creative presentations with Prezi and infographics
Whether it’s the information age’s endless data streams or the seemingly infinite English lexicon, it’s easy to see how students can often feel overwhelmed by the data they are expected to process. I believe the solution lies in giving them more creative control over their learning and in this week’s postRead More
Trending with IELTS Task 1: a web journalism project
Any teacher who has spent time teaching IELTS Task 1 has probably faced the same problem: that students writing about trends in the chart or table often fail to… actually write about the trends! They learn key phrases, like ‘it increased’ and ‘there was a decrease’, but then just use theseRead More
10 tips to improve your grammar
No matter what language you’re learning, grammar is hard. So many rules, exceptions to rules, and exceptions to the exceptions of those rules! Help your students keep on top of their English grammar with this great infographic, with some of the most common grammatical mistakes and tips to boostRead More
Guided tours on Google My Places and Google Earth
The great thing about many of the online resources we have available these days is that they are not just resources in a static sense; they are also spaces that we can continually re-source for all kinds of student activities.
Russell Stannard recently spoke at IATEFL about the connected classroom, where weRead More
What’s the point of editors?
If you hear the word ‘editor’, what are the words that immediately come into your mind?
When I tried out this word-association game on some friends (some of whom were ELT writers and others not), the result was interesting. One common – and perhaps predictable – theme was the editor’s obsession withRead More
Using wikis in your writing lessons
Even if your school hasn’t opted for a VLE yet there are numerous ways to start introducing an online tool to your teaching. You can choose between a number of options: Writing tasks lend themselves to being used for collaborative writing with, blogs or wikis the obvious choice.
Blogs and wikis –Read More
“A picture is worth a thousand words”, but what if you can add the whole slideshow, words, sentences and accompany it with music?
Your students regularly post pictures on Facebook or Twitter and comment on them, so why not take their witty commenting skills into the English class. PhotoPeach.com isRead More
Valentine’s, Poetry & TEFL
As Valentine’s approaches it’s time to resurrect our Blended MEC Valentine’s poetry competition. Last year we asked you to get your students to write variations on the ‘Roses are red, Violets are blue…’ poem format, using it to deliver some untimely bad news. You can build on this byRead More
Skills: Penzu a writing tool
I’ve recently noticed how technology is affecting my writing. I definitely cut down on writing using a fountain pen or pen, and I can see its effects as my handwriting quality has unfortunately started going down hill. It’s mostly because I tend to write more emails instead of letters andRead More
Halloween cemetery stories
I know that a lot of people think that Halloween is a very commercial holiday; however I personally really like it maybe because it is so different from All Saints Day on the 1st of November which I am so familiar with. I see Halloween as a day of amazing pumpkinRead More
Going viral in the classroom
A fun way to bring online learning to your classroom is to make use of the internet’s vast array of funny videos. You can combine these fun resources with the language focus of making predictions.Read More
Get your students talking by putting them in pairs then showing them the beginning of the