English Spelling

English spelling is notoriously complex because it is influenced by multiple systems. Understanding these systems can help teachers explain spelling patterns and irregularities more effectively. Read more

Padlet

If you do any online teaching, you probably already know Padlet and use it quite regularly. It is a great collaboration tool for students to share their work. What you might not know much about is Padlet’s new features, released last year, which include AI help. Read more

Study Strategies

Developing “learner autonomy” has been a crucial element of TEFL for at least as long as I’ve been teaching, so it’s interesting to see what seems to be a growing interest in study strategies from students, on social media and in classes.   Read more

Homestay Games

When you’re hosting homestay students, it can be difficult to engage the whole household in conversation, especially if your students are lower levels, particularly in the first few days. I tend to find there’s some dead time after dinner, rainy days and long journeys when everyone is gathered together and conversation can be difficult.

Here are some games we’ve used. The title of each game links to instructions. The language areas specified give an indication of lexical and grammatical areas practiced in the games, but these aren’t classes – the aim should be communication and fun, rather than accuracy. Read more

EAP Tutorials

One of the topics I’m really interested in at the moment is tutorials, not just in EAP but in any class that is not one-to-one. In one-to-one classes, which are created to address an individual student’s needs, discussing progress, addressing areas of difficulty, talking about goals and aspirations, and finding methods that work for a particular student are all interwoven within each class. After teaching one-to-ones for a while, you begin to appreciate the difficulties involved in bringing that individual attention to each student in larger classes (although, larger classes offer many other benefits for students, and teachers). If organised well, tutorials should offer students in larger classes some of the one-to-one attention lacking. Read more

Effective Use of Marking Symbols: A Two-Stage Solution

As ESL/EFL teachers, providing constructive feedback is crucial for our students’ language development. One common, effective way to offer feedback is through the use of marking symbols. This not only pinpoints areas for improvement but also encourages learner autonomy and self-correction. Read more

CPD: ChatGPT in the Language Classroom and AI Tools for the English Language Classroom

 “AI won’t take your job. It’s somebody using AI that will take your job” Richard Baldwin, Economist. Read more

CPD: Trinity Cert PT in EAP

The Trinity Cert PT

I’d never heard of a Cert PT before finding this course. It is the Trinity Certificate for Practising Teachers. It’s a level 6 qualification, which places it between the CELTA (level 5) and DELTA (level 7). As I understand it, it is possible to take a Cert PT in different specialisations e.g. Young Learners, Online Teaching, Business English etc. However, I am told that the certificates awarded don’t actually name the specialism, which seems odd. Read more

CPD British Council Teaching English Courses

Courses

These are short self-study courses, made up of three modules plus an introductory module which you only need do once. I’m not sure how much time they suggest for each course but a whole course can be completed in 2 – 3 hours. Read more