Friday, October 30, 2009
Thursday, October 29, 2009
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Here I attach a comment I made to a post of the website of The British Council - BBC. I hope it were any interesting to you.
Submitted on 27 August, 2009 - 20:27
Hello, FairyAnna and everybody,
First just to say that the topic of my doctoral thesis is (was) Success in learning English as a foreign language.
Yet, I did not accomplish composing it. To be honest, I left the doctorado and changed the stuff of the thesis into a, say, more for everyday teaching, more practical, not that theoretical. And.. the book has not been published yet (ever?). All in all, you can see the stuff of the book on my blog, in progress, obviously. I'll let you know if many visitors...
Anyway. So, I'm going to say something briefly. Currently I teach several groups of kids, aged 10 to 13. The classes are rather informal, nevertheless serious for we point to a target, which is... success, at speaking, at least. 2 class-periods per week.
The point is that we have fun, a big one, we play a long series of games speaking-aimed. All the class long is in English, the kids may know little English though. I pretend I do not understand them if Spanish is spoken. I give them points for a score, within an ambiance of gentle competition. At the end of the academic year other teachers run an auction with the points, just small presents.
I have planned three aims, subsequently and in short: words as replies, making oral sentences, and holding conversations.
The goal is success, at gaining some fluency at speaking. We are after that goal.
Why so this comment? To let you know we have fun, I listen to the kids, and to their parents, at tutorials, and we all try to learn in an easy, demanding atmosphere though, and to bear in mind high values, like helping your friends and so a bit forgetting about yourself.
Hope this might give a dim light at least about so attracting our profession is, as you well know. We are educating persons, that's worth enough to devote your life.
Best for everyone. At your disposal.
Picture from auladejuanma wordpress com. Sub-Saharanian inmigrants in a dud "patera". Many of those people try to reach the Spanish coasts. Many die on the way. They can be demanded some €3,000 for the journey, by the mafias from their birthcountries.
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
“The student is the protagonist of his or her process of learning.
Do not scold them.
I mean: Do not be like their foe.
Do not think: They are my enemies, who want to boycott my class-period.
Chasten them as the ultimate source. I mean, count on your students, do not count against your students.
That way, each student will struggle to improve his or her homework, say. Otherwise, this student will view the subject of English as a rock, a nasty one, which is stunning and crushing upon him.
However, do not be an illusion-puppet: the students are a bit rascal and tend to avoid working their homework. Some, some of them. Be cautious. Anyways: ultimately they are free to do whatsoever they want.
The Great Dictator (1940), starring and maybe directing also Charles Chaplin. legalmoviesdownloads com. You know, Eugenio, whether the director was himself?
Monday, October 26, 2009
Here I have copied and pasted something I wrote May 4, 2009. I have made some minor stylistic changes.
A person who wants, who wishes to learn a language, and he has the firm resolution to do it, will learn, for granted. It’s a mixture of effective willing plus likes. You love what you know. You know more and more, and this fact makes you love learning, carrying on learning. You are continuously learning, from there and from here. All the time. Every day. You pick up one word here, one other word there. That’s the person who really learns.
The point is that one person learns/acquires a language for communication. And communication is between two persons. One person helps, serves the other one. Always the other.
www elmundo es. Berlin Wall, around 1989.
Sunday, October 25, 2009
Friday, October 23, 2009
Fernando Infante: thanks for your artistic backup to my pictures! I also owe the pics to a lot of websites.
Here you have a comment I made for the British Council - BBC website. Worthy to pay a visit to, and more than one visit. Just in case it helps you with your everyday labor. I know you keep your enthusiasm when teaching.
Submitted on 19 August, 2009 - 20:24
I'm sorry. I want to reply to your philosophy of teaching. The bit of the problem is that right now I can't see your name: I'm at a computer of a friend of mine, dating circa 1800 ;)
I agree with your philosophy of teaching: awesome! That hits the nail on the head.
I subscribe what you say. I just wanted to support your philosophy: carry on that way.
I'd like to write for longer, but now it's tough, and very hot here in marvellous Granada (Spain).
Hope to write at some time, as well to let our colleagues know about your philosophy.
Know what? My own philosophy agrees with yours a lot - I do know some other teachers going along on that pathway, and it turns out nice.
For further info you all, if you like, have a peek at
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
blogs cope es
The picture shows a game of cricket. I mean it for Spanish visitors to my blog. The photo thanks to taiyak wordpress com
Learning in groups
Submitted on 21 August, 2009 - 11:05
Hello, Olwyn Alexander,
I have attended classes of English myself, as a learner, at Centro de Lenguas Modernas, an institution of Universidad de Granada, Spain. We used to work in groups, quite often. The teacher was an experienced one, a kind British lady.
I'll just refer to one point. We were adults, with a professional interest in learning and practising general English. I'm a teacher of English myself.
The fact of working in groups was useful, because each member of the team - teams of two or three - might have a different answer when working out exercises of the course book. As a result we confronted our proposals and we learned from one another; you thought whether your classmate's answer could be the correct one.
I also think that working in groups made you become more, say, tense, and as a result you used to invest more effort and focus.
With regard to adolescent students for example, I'd like to write a lot, but now I'm going to refer to one aspect that comes to my mind first.
You split a large class into two teams. And you all practice, say, one grammar pattern for example, by playing one team vs the other one, so as to have two competitors, two players.
In this way the students of the same team stick together closely, in order to contribute with the best answer or reply. I mean, this competition fosters concentration and working out a specific grammar pattern.
You, any teacher, can have a peek at my blog:
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
I copied and pasted a comment I posted on the website of Teaching English British Council - BBC
Submitted on 18 October, 2009 - 16:55
Hello, Martina Kliem, Monicabb Sian Gourlay, Katie-Leck,
I have read your comments. They hit on so a frequent problem... or challenge. Thank you.
I'll briefly tell about my experience.
I also teach in Spain. I'm Spanish myself. Although my students can be beginners, I "only" understand and speak English. They do know it. They are also inside the dough. English, all the class-period round.
My students are false-beginners.
First premise: it's sound for them to hear stuff in English, so as to touch the texture of the language.
Also: I add loads of gesturing, face expressions, acting out, smiling, speed-changing, intonation. You, teacher, must enjoy classes.
(Don't get me wrong. I'm not showing off, by boasting big).
Currently, a significant part of the class-period is games. So, the process: presentation by me, examples, repeating, smiling, trying get empathy with each kid, leaning on veteran students to explain to the lost classmate about the game - with a load of enthusiasm by his or her veteran classmate, etc.
With the passing days, more and more they grasp the stuff I tell them.
I pretend trying to understand their broken and inaccurate English, very attentively, making faces myself.
I could tell you further, but just get this picture.
I have learned a lot from an expert at teaching languages, Emeritus professor H. D. Brown, San Francisco State University. Plus colleagues of ours, maybe from you all, on this website.
I wish you the best to you all.
Fernando Diez Gallego
Sunday, October 18, 2009
Unit 5 test
November 15, 2008
a- What is the planet?
b- What’s its position or ordinal number in relation to the sun?
c- How many earths might it fit inside?
d- Is its surface like the one of the earth, on which you can walk on normally? If not, what is its surface like?
e- What do scientists think its center might have?
f- Is the pressure on that planet very strong?
7. Name the planets in the correct order from he sun.
8. What planet would you like to go to? Why?
9. Write about an exciting experience you have had. (Minimum 50 words—2 points)
Saturday, October 17, 2009
Friday, October 16, 2009
Thursday, October 15, 2009
"Yesterday I had a class with some students with a low level of English.
Even one of them had showed cognitive problems lately.
I was worried the class-period would not turn out well.
However, when one student said a correct answer or reply, I gently praised him; tired I felt though, and this fact made me feel better.
Also, for my surprise, the student with cognitive flaws got into the center of the target, and I also praised him, with a smile and some words of comfort.
Anyway, what I mean is that the result of the class-period had worked better than my previous expectations.
Because of affection and considering the students as better as I had foreseen.
And the students themselves got out of the classroom a bit more satisfied."
Soy Iñigo Montoya, tú mataste a mi padre, prepárate a morir. From The Princess Bride movie. Thanks to nationallampoon com .
Friday, October 9, 2009
"Mrs. M. J. A. taught me how to utilize visual aids in the classes.
Even more when the kids are younger: from months of age to 12, 13, 14 approximately.
Very young learners are not capable to understand abstract ideas, or grammar forms.
From 6 of Primary, I mean, since the students are 11 or 12 they can begin to understand grammar patterns.
In any case, it's sensible to bring visual aids to the classroom.
And exploit those visual aids.
Speak about the pictures.
First, it's sensible for you to speak quite a lot of things about the picture or poster. And repeat what you said.
And they listen, and get stuck to the picture because of your emphasis, repetition, good humor and enthusiasm. Put fun in your class-periods.
And afterwards, after your output to your students, ask them basic questions to them.
Perhaps the answers will be one word.
Ask the same question to another student, for him or her to say again what the first student said.
And for advanced students or older ones, demand from them to utter longer statements.
And always, from you, a smile, mainly when they hit the center of the target."
A cute view of a Chinese classroom. I thank ucl ac uk .
Thursday, October 8, 2009
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
The teacher coach said to one other teacher,
“ I do know you are prudent and cautious.
So far, I told you many tips and techniques for your classes, ok.
My experience and research, which I have explained to you, is with single-sex schools.
It is essential that the individual tutorials be one male student with a male teacher, and the same in the case of females.
This is my advice.
As well, class-periods are very communicative, friendly btween you and your students, and among the students, you all make up a fist when working together.
Some years ago, I taught a class-group of adult learners.
Some of them were married, I mean, one spouse of the marriage couple was a student in my classes. And I could see growing very close relationships among them in the classroom. They were so close to one another.
I got a bit worried. Well, nothing bad necessarily could arouse in their relationships, but, like I told you, I got a bit concerned about these relationships and spending too many hours close together, with one another, even more when the marriage couple were home. Could this end into something against his wife, or her husband? The relationship in the classroom grew intense, close, so friendly, they shared with personal sentiments...
When you, a male teacher, make a tutorial with a male adult learner, or a younger one, you will also speak about intimate things, and feelings, and emotions. Be prudent: now think of the worst possible point. You make a tutorial with a girl, with this intimate way I just told you...
No way, man!
I would not speak with a beautiful girl about my interior, or her interior.
I think, on the other hand, to remember that some years ago one male teacher, no tutorial system established in the school, met a female student, and eventually they got married. There was not much difference in age between them. So, this last thing made ultimately a positive and clean relationship.”
Thank you for the picture, tempsdescriure blogspot com .