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Sophisticated English for Global Souls
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15
JUN
2008

ESL classes should include more conversation activities!

Conversation activities need greater presence in classrooms “Speech is civilization itself. It is silence which isolates.” -Thomas Mann (1875-1955) German novelist Conversation remains a vital social skill for our English students. Naturally, immigrants and...
26
JUL
2014

Teachers and Tutors Should Know About Compelling Conversations

English teacher and tutor Joan V reviews Compelling Conversations “We all like to be recognized not for one piece of fireworks, but for the ledger of our daily work.” ―Neil Armstrong (1930-2012) American astronaut Sometimes you just have to smile. Praise, especially from an...
05
MAY
2009

Finding more practical materials at CATESOL

Time flies. Or, as the Romans used to say, “tempus fugit.” Two weeks after the CATESOL 2009 convention in Pasadena ended, I’m finally having a chance to sort through the numerous books, doublecheck website leads, and evaluate materials that I picked up. Sometimes “the eyes are...
15
JUN
2008

Make time for conversations – in and outside of English classrooms

The art of conversation, once considered the sign of a civilized individual, seems less common today.  Yet I treasure the moments of sharing experiences, collecting news, and exchanging ideas.  I make a point of knowing my neighbors, allowing casual greetings to become long...
15
JUN
2008

Can I turn that paper in next week?

Accommodating English teachers, students and the need for more time Sometimes time just seems to escape, and we fall behind. Despite the alarm clocks, cell phones, and wrist watches, and many labor-saving appliances, the hours just seem to rush by, the work piles remain, and time...
01
JUL
2014

Creating Simple ESL Lesson Plans Around Top Ten Lists for Advanced English Classes

Advanced ESL/EFL classes benefit from making top ten lists “Share your knowledge. It’s a way to achieve immortality.” ―Tenzin Gyatso (1950-) 14th Dalai Lama Americans love to create, read, and discuss top ten lists. Newspapers and magazines use the simple format to summarize...
28
JUN
2014

Learning by Doing and Making “Good Mistakes” in English classes

Why English learners must practice and make “good mistakes” in order to grow “A man’s mistakes are his portals of discovery.” ―James Joyce (1882-1941), Irish novelist and poet How can English language teachers create a rigorous, tolerant and focused classroom...
18
JUL
2008

Does Uncle Sam want immigrants to learn English?

Yet funding for English language classes, especially for adults, remains quite limited. Government programs only help students learn rather basic English, often around 1200 essential words. Students can “pass” all their ESL classes and learn enough English to hold low-level jobs....
15
JUN
2008

Conversation Starter #10 – Can you recommend a good book?

Converse with a teacher, student or stranger about books “No two persons ever read the same book.” -Edmund Wilson (1895-1972) American writerBooks and literature still matter in our 21st century global culture of blogs, especially for starting conversations. In the...
15
JUN
2008

What should every (college) ESL student know?

What should every ESL student know? Beats me. One size fits all philosophies often seem a bit strange to me. Can anybody really answer this question for every international student and ESL (English as a Second Language) college student? Really? Don’t circumstances, needs, and...