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Sophisticated English for Global Souls
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23
JUN
2018

Teaching Matters: Tips on Tutoring Conversation Skills to Adult ESL Students

“Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible.” ―Tony Robbins (1960- ), American motivational speaker What does it mean to effectively tutor conversation skills to an English language learner? How can you make the most of your time – typically 60-120...
12
FEB
2016
Two young people with candied haw.

“Good Enough”: English as a lingua franca & a uniting force

“I’m a great believer that any tool that enhances communication has profound effects in terms of how people can learn from each other, and how they can achieve the kind of freedoms that they’re interested in.” ~Bill Gates (1955- ) American business...
11
JAN
2016
Happy students waving international flags

Teaching Matters: What Are Reasonable Standards for Listening Comprehension and Speaking Skills for ESL Students?

“Our progress as a nation can be no swifter than our progress in education.” ~John F. Kennedy (1917-1963), 35th President of the U.S.   Tough question! Context, as ever, matters. Are you going into a new semester of class looking for a clear, detailed chart to...
25
NOV
2015

Using 5W+H Questions to Create Longer, Better Conversations

When we ask more, we know more and share more. Here's a simple checklist to help your English students build better conversations from targeted questions.
10
OCT
2015
Couple dating in bar, smiling and talking

Search and Share Speaking Activities Can Flip English Classrooms and Become Complete EFL Class Lessons

    “Education is a kind of continuing dialogue and a dialogue assumes, in the nature of the case, different points of view.” ~Robert Hutchins (1899-1977), educator and philosopher How can we create more speaking opportunities for students in our English...
10
JUL
2014

Paraphrasing is an Essential Conversation Skill!

If English students can accurately paraphrase a reading, a radio segment, or a verbal statement, they can actively participate in common conversations and classroom discussions. Many English teachers underestimate the importance of this skill, and assume students understand more...
06
JUL
2014

Tutoring English Students on Speaking Skills? Set Clear Expectations!

I strongly suggest you establish clear expectations about both content and business matters. Some tutors even present a written contract outlining their rates, the location and times of meetings, and payment policies. One of my university colleagues makes students sign a form...
23
MAR
2014

Savvy Tips to Score Higher on the TOEFL iBT Speaking Section

What do you do with a problem like the TOEFL iBT test? For worse or for better, the TOEFL test remains the standard assessment of English for international students planning to attend American colleges and universities. As a result, many international ESOL (English Speakers of...
26
OCT
2012

Do Our Students Need to Swim in English or Pass Grammar Tests?

Here is a short list of important questions for our English language learners. Can they order food in a nice restaurant? Can students fill in government forms? Can they understand classified ads - online or in a paper? Can they negotiate prices at a yard...
17
FEB
2012

Videotaping Helps ESL Students Recognize Their Good Mistakes – and Learn from Them!

How do you help your ESL students recognize their errors in speaking English? What techniques do you use to make their mistakes “psychologically real” to them? One technique I’ve found effective may seem rather counter-intuitive: encourage them! This unorthodox...
12