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PechaFlickr – exam speaking practice


One of the common complaints students have about exam speaking is that they never know what to say.  In practice sessions, I've had students dry up completely and embarrassedly freeze half way through a sentence, I've had other students refuse... Continue Reading →

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Excellense in Englis – the decline or evolution of the language?


Is the language dying?  A recent column in The Economist (Johnson: A long decline) asks the question from the perspective of a steadfast native British English speaker, looking around themselves and finding that the language they think they speak is,... Continue Reading →

Complexity Theory and ELT – Manchester Roundtable


The idea of complexity theory and it's relationship to language and language learning is something that I've been starting to read into a bit more deeply recently.  There's something about it that seems intuitively right, which usually means that I... Continue Reading →

World Teachers’ Day


It was World Teachers' Day last Sunday - and there is a certain irony in celebrating the teaching profession on the one day of the week that no-one's in school, but never mind! As part of the celebrations the Teaching... Continue Reading →

Guest Post: Living and Working with Diabetes


Being ill is never nice.  Being ill in a foreign country where you don't speak the language and maybe don't know how to ask for help is really, really tough.  For all those language teachers around the world who have... Continue Reading →

A lesson on Reported Speech


This is a lesson that I did with my intermediate level students this week.  I particularly like the freer practice task, which is a "Find Someone Who" type task, where the students have to communicate via an intermediary (hence the... Continue Reading →

The Future of Language Teaching – a reply to my critics


About a week ago, I wrote a piece on “The Future of Language Teaching” for the Teaching English blog.  It seems to have been slightly controversial. In it, I tried to paint a picture of what language learning might look... Continue Reading →

#IATEFL 2014: Together in Electric Dreams – Pondering the Future of EdTech


Gavin Dudeney’s talk took a quick look at the possible future of technology in ELT – pulling out a number of technologies and trends and asking the audience to think of them in terms of whether they represented a Strength,... Continue Reading →

#IATEFL 2014 Talk: Chalk and Cheese – Equivalency Issues with IELTS and TOEFL


So this is the talk that I gave today - thanks to everyone who attended - I hope you enjoyed it! For anyone who wasn't there, here's the blurb for this talk: IELTS and TOEFL are widely used as equivalent... Continue Reading →

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