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More than five approaches to planning lessons

Lesson Planning

image: Fuschia Foot

I’ve been out of town, so am just now getting caught up on the last round of posts on the iTDi blog about working with difficult students. If life happened to interfere with your chance to read those posts, please do. They’re as inspiring as always.

This week’s topic is lesson planning, and there was quite a range in the way the iTDi bloggers approach their planning. (more…)

Listen: You’ve Got To Be The Change You Need to Be (by Chuck Sandy)

“Let us not talk falsely now, the hour is getting late.” – Bob Dylan

Chuck in his gardenListen. Although I had a chance to tell you all this in my recent post on the iTDi Blog, I didn’t. Rather than write about staying healthy, I wrote about motivation. Then I read Chiew Pang’s wonderful post How To Stay Healthy The Cheap and Easy Way and decided to tell the whole story, and by doing so, the truth. (more…)

Life as a freelance English teacher in Hungary (by Lilla Udvarhelyi)

Budapest

image: eCastillo on Flickr

I feel a bit strange if I count the number of years I have been working as an English teacher. Seventeen years, that is, a bit less than half my life. During this time I have been able to experience changes in my country, in my profession, but and this is the most important for me, I haven’t got bored with it at all. Life-long passion I would say. Let’s see how it started. (more…)

More than six ways to stay healthy and motivated

I’m tired today. Actually a lot of teachers I know are tired. Whether we’re teaching long days at a language school, or large classes at a public school, or teaching at multiple schools to try and pay the bills, teaching can be a tiring job. Burning the work candle at both ends makes it a challenge to stay healthy, and feeling less than valued by employers makes it hard to stay motivated. I was very interested in reading the teacher posts on the iTDi blog this week because they deal with this very topic–how to stay healthy and motivated. As always, I got a lot of great, practical tips, and food for thought. (more…)

New song worksheets from Marsha Goren

In her previous post, Teaching Songs and Chants in the Classroom, Marsha Goren shared a set of worksheets she had created to accompany the songs on the first GiggleBellies CD. This morning, Marsha sent me a message and attached a new set of worksheets to go along with the second GiggleBellies CD. (more…)

Because We All Love a Good Story (by Kevin Stein)

Some ideas on why and how to use short stories in the language classroom

This morning, while I was greeting students at the front door of my high school, Miki-Chan, a second year student in the International Course, came up to me with a book in hand. She slapped her palm against the cover and said, “This is a horrible story to read in the morning. It says, ‘people were cut up like meat.’” I’m not sure exactly how she wanted me to respond. She was reading a Sherlock Holmes story from a collection in a lower-intermediate level graded reader. We had read the first half in class and students had to finish the story as homework. While I was thinking of an appropriate reply, she huffed off. (more…)

Village updates

First, an explanation about a couple of changes that I’ve made in the past week. You may have noticed that the last couple of posts had a copyright statement at the bottom of the post, and if you subscribe to Teaching Village in a reader or by email, you certainly will have noticed that you now receive a snippet rather than a post. Plagiarism has always been a bit of a problem, but it was manageable. However, Sue Lyon-Jones’ post about copyright and plagiarism was reprinted (without permission) more than was manageable. Luckily, Sue is waaaay more knowledgeable about this stuff than I am, and she helped me make changes here that will keep everyone’s posts safer. If you’d like to read more about snippets vs. full posts, Sue has written another wonderful post about that topic over on Marisa Constantidides’ TEFL Matters. Now, if my posts were the only ones being copied, I don’t know that I would have made the change to snippets. I like getting full posts myself, and as a coursebook author I’m used to living with copyright infringement. However, I’m also responsible for being a good steward for the Villagers who share their writing here–78 guest authors representing 33 countries, and counting. I appreciate your understanding about these changes. (more…)

More than six ways to encourage collaboration in language class

Telling teachers to collaborate is a bit like preaching to the choir. Collaboration is the norm for teachers working together in social networks. Every time a guest author shares a post on Teaching Village and then interacts with readers in comments, we are collaborating in our own learning. However, bringing collaboration into our classes is often a different story. How do we include collaboration in classes where we have a syllabus to follow, or in a school environment that doesn’t encourage different ways of teaching? (more…)

Copyright, Plagiarism, and Digital Literacy (by Sue Lyon-Jones)

Copyright

image credit: PugnoM on Flickr

Copyright is a pretty a hot topic in the ELT world at the moment, and many people are discussing it and blogging about it.  The law that applies to using lesson materials or blog posts written by other people is complicated, and teachers often find the various issues surrounding copyright confusing. This post sets out to explain some of the main aspects of the law relating to copyright and fair use as it applies to uploading, sharing and remixing materials for educational use, and seeks to provide guidelines for good practice in acknowledging, referencing  and attributing online sources. (more…)

Large Teenage Classes: some strategies to enjoy the lesson! (by Valentina Morgana)

Note from Barb: A few days ago, I wrote a short post for the iTDi blog about teaching large classes. I was fascinated by the Englishometer that Valentina mentioned in her comment, and asked if she’d consider sharing more of her ideas in a guest post here. Lucky for us, she agreed!

About ten years ago (when I graduated), if you had told me I would spend a significant part of my life teaching English to young people, I would have been surprised, a little shocked. To be honest, at that time teaching English was not my dream. I always loved the language, the culture and the literature, but never before had I thought I could be a teacher.

It didn’t have anything to do with the language, I was just afraid of managing thirty young boys all together, only me and them in one room. So I started working in a big international company. My role was to implement communication plans and run workshops for managers.

After two years I realised I was not getting anything back. In terms of values and human relationships, I mean. So I decided to go into teaching. Basically it was moving from an impersonal environment into a strong human-focused one. (more…)