Using Proverbs in a Writing Class

Elena Shvidko
Elena Shvidko

When I was little, I used to have a book with a collection of Russian proverbs and sayings.  I remember being absolutely fascinated by the depth of knowledge and wisdom that I discovered on the pages of that book.  Those proverbs opened a door for me to a better understanding of the Russian culture as well as important norms, morals, and life values.  Indeed, I can say they helped me become a more mature and intelligent human being.

Speaking about second language learners: Proverbs can—like in my own experience—help them learn a great deal about the target culture and the norms and values that people in that culture respect and treasure.  A writing class  is a great venue for incorporating proverbs into teaching.  Continue reading

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Greetings From Yilin and Important Initiatives From TESOL

Yilin Sun
Yilin Sun

The TESOL President’s Blog

Greetings from Yilin! I am truly honored and excited to have this opportunity to serve as president of TESOL International Association.

I’d like to thank the entire TESOL membership for choosing me to represent you and serve you in this leading international professional organization in the global ELT field! This is a responsibility that I do not take lightly, and I will endeavor to be your tireless advocate, visionary, and responsive leader in representing TESOL and all of our members with the utmost transparency and courage.
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SCVNGR Hunts

Tara Arntsen
Tara Arntsen

A week after the TESOL convention in Portland, I am still trying to unpack all the information I tried to absorb and one of the pieces I rediscovered today is SCVNGR, which came up in one of the many sessions I attended. Now this is going to be a bit of an adventure for us, because as awesome as this app sounded to me, I do not have a device that will run it, so you will just have to try it out and I will work on bringing an additional piece of technology into my life.

Here is what I know. SCVNGR, pronounced “scavenger,” is a free app for iPhones and Android phones (and tablets?) that taps into the GPS function and allows users to create and play scavenger hunts. Continue reading

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ESL Games: Hink Pink – Word Game

Marc Anderson
Marc Anderson

The Game: You might know this word game by a whole bunch of other names like Hank Pank, Brain Train, Stinky Pinky, or Wordy Gurdy. The game is made up of a phrase that conveys an adjective paired with a rhyming noun (e.g., a funny bunny, or a big wig). Some people like to use the one-syllable word name for one syllable answers, and the two-syllable names for two syllable answers. But the idea of the game is the same.

Research Says: It is a fun way to practice language skills. The game helps with word recall and with understanding word meaning by playing with words. Hink Pink is a highly motivating game because it is so fun. It breaks a common perception that all learning should be serious in nature and that if “…one is having fun and there is hilarity and laughter, then it is not really learning” (Lee Su Kim, Creative Games for the Language Class).
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Poetry Month: The Impact of English in Ethiopia and Around the World

Guest Author
Guest Author

Abate HagosA Guest Post by Abate Hagos
Abate Hagos attended high school in the Sidaama zone of Ethiopia and speaks Sidaama, Amharic, and English. He has a BA in English Language and Literature and attended the Postgraduate Diploma in Teaching Program and the Higher Diploma Program at Dilla University. He currently teaches in the Hawassa College of Teacher Education in southern Ethiopia.

 

I wrote this poem when I was a student at Jimma University and presented it on English Day at the university. I wanted to show how crucial it is that we learn English and how broad and important its use is around the world. Now I use the poem with the high school classes that I teach. I have found it to be very helpful to make the students aware of the importance of English in everyday life, anywhere they go, so that they will be motivated to learn English.
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An ESP Poetry Tale: The Kenneth Rexroth Symposium at KUIS

Kevin Knight
Kevin Knight

Hello, ESPers worldwide!

As April is U.S. National Poetry month, I was asked to submit a poetry-related blog post. I actually do have an ESP-related story to tell.

In the year 2007, a poetry symposium on Kenneth Rexroth (1905-1982) was to be held at Kanda University of International Studies (KUIS) in Chiba, Japan where the Kenneth Rexroth collection was housed. Although Rexroth “did not consider himself to be a Beat poet, and disliked the association, he was dubbed the ‘Father of the Beats’ by Time [magazine].” Continue reading

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TED Talks for English Language Teaching

Tara Arntsen
Tara Arntsen

A little while back, I wrote about the site News in Levels and how perfect it was for listening practice, especially for mixed level classes. While I have used it with students in the past, in the intensive English program that I am a part of now, I’ve found that TED Talks are even better, so I wanted to share that site with you just in case you missed Alexandra Lowe’s TED Talks post last year.

If you have never watched a TED Talk before, you really need to. You can find them on just about every topic and they often challenge you to think in a different way. They are usually fairly short with the ones I have used ranging from 5 to 15 minutes. This length makes them perfect for use in the classroom or even as homework assignments.
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ESL Games: What Am I? – Parts of Speech Game

Marc Anderson
Marc Anderson

The Game: What Am I? – Parts of Speech is a board game that helps ESL students of all levels with identifying parts of speech and how words are correctly put together into sentences. The game also teaches vocabulary, grammar, spelling, and punctuation.

Research Says: Language learning games “…create contexts in which the language is useful and meaningful. The learners want to take part and in order to do so must understand what others are saying or have written” (Games of Language Learning, Cambridge University Press, 1984, Wright, Betteridge and Buckby). This game does just that! Continue reading

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Live From TESOL 2014: Wrapping Up and Moving Out

Tara Arntsen
Tara Arntsen

Tara Arntsen is blogging live from Portland
during the 2014 convention. Look for her posts!

Today was the last day of the TESOL convention in Portland, Oregon, but just because everyone was wrapping things up and moving out of the convention center, it does not mean the fun was over. It was still a full day, and I have so many small moments and comments to share that only short summaries will work. I will go in order:

Firstly, I missed the keynote because it conflicted with my early morning presentation in the Electronic Village (EV), but hopefully I can watch it online. I presented two sessions in the EV this morning and had a wonderful time. Thank you to everyone who stopped by to participate. I really enjoyed speaking with people about blogging, Glogster EDU, and just technology in general. Continue reading

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Live From TESOL 2014: Chaos and Complexity in Portland

Andy Curtis
Andy Curtis

Andy Curtis is blogging live from Portland
during the 2014 convention. Look for his posts!

The last plenary session of TESOL 2014 was given this morning by Prof. Diane Larsen-Freeman. Like the word “Wow” (see my last blog), the word “inspiring” can also be over-used, but that’s the word I heard myself and many other people using today, after the plenary. In fact, I think it was the only plenary at this year’s convention to receive a standing ovation. Continue reading

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