“I don’t understand your writing feedback and correction.” Oh, the horror.


Imagine the horror: a few days ago, with three weeks left before the end of the course and the Cambridge First Certificate exam, I found myself sitting across from a student who told me that she did not understand my writing correction system.

“What do you mean?” I said. She had submitted her FCE writing task – a report – as a Google Doc and she was looking at the marked version on her phone as we waited for the other students to arrive.

“The colors. The green stuff. The red stuff. The orange stuff. What does that mean again?”

My blood ran cold.

No, I’ve never actually written or typed or even said that egregiously clichéd sentence before but that’s just what happened: My blood ran cold.

I explained what the colors meant. Then we went on talking about the goods and the bads of her report and did…

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Some topics my Ss are interested in

Is it easy or difficult for you to come up with some interesting and engaging topics for your students to write essays on? It is often a challenge for me because it’s quite difficult to come up with some original topic, so usually, I ask my students to choose an article of interest to them and write their essays discussing the issue or issues it is devoted to or ask them to share some topics they find interesting. So, here I’d like to share with you a post about some topics of interest to a  group of my students has come up with:

“We are quite interested in news from all over the world about art ( cinema, theatre), politics, gossip, animals, sport, but don’t spend a lot of time on reading them or watching TV programms.

So, <we> have made our own list of resources where we take information from.

Different social networksImage result for Different social networks Online magazines and newspapers Videos from YouTube Relatives and friends

Online magazines and newspapers

Videos from YouTube

Relatives and friends

We don’t really believe in gossip’s originality because they tells us about somebody’s private life, and we cannot check if it’s right or not. It is just interesting to read as a lightweight.

Cinema and art news are understated for us, so we like to read it more and cannot put it away.

Of course, we don’t trust in everything because it’s a mass media, and it’s work is to catch people’s attention”.

-from a post by a group of my students (Class 2019)


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It’s a great way to represent information indeed! Thanks for sharing:)


This post is based on the IATEFL opening plenary Connecting minds: language learner and teacher psychologies by Sarah Mercer (Day 2 of IATEFL 2017 in Glasgow). Watch the plenary session here.

The Human Element

pizap (4).jpgIf it ain't broke don't fix it..pngIf it ain't broke don't fix it. (1).pngIf it ain't broke don't fix it. (2)* * *

This year I’ve decided to change my IATEFL blogging format and explore visual thinking tools.  All posts this week will outline some ideas from the Conference and feature a number of graphic organizers/visual thinking tools that may well be used in the classroom.

A paper tetrahedron is a fantastic visual tool to show a hierarchy of concepts or ideas, or follow the Rule of 3 (3 sides, 3 main ideas, 3 supporting ideas, etc.) to structure them. You don’t need any special skills to make it (watch the video below).

Instead of tape, you may also clip together the inner sides of the pyramid with a paper clip. pizap (3).jpg

Happy conferencing and happy teaching!

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Citation Practices in Humanities and Social Sciences

What is your field of specialisation? Are you concerned about citation practices in  the Humanities and social sciences? If yes, read on and then I share your opinion with us in the thread It’d be interesting to learn your opinion about it:


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Spaceman: An alternative to hangman

Do you like using word games in your classes? Have you ever played Hangman? Are you all right with it? Here is a great alternative to it designed by the colleagues. It’s easy to use it, and it produces great results. Students loved it.

‘Spaceman’ is an alternative to hangman. It uses easy to draw shapes, it followed the same rules and it is easily identifiable by its name. I imagine that if you are reading this you are…

Source: Spaceman: An alternative to hangman

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The Women’s Marches and the Politics of Care: The Best Response to Trump’s Inaugural Address

The Women’s Marches across America and the world were peaceful, family-oriented, and cooperative. They required energy and effort, along with the devotion to travel, gather, and march. The marches …

Source: The Women’s Marches and the Politics of Care: The Best Response to Trump’s Inaugural Address

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Do you have what it takes? (Everyday idioms in newspapers)

by Kate Woodford As part of an occasional series on the subject of common idioms, we recently posted a blog which featured the idioms which we heard in spoken English during the course of a week. …

Source: Do you have what it takes? (Everyday idioms in newspapers)

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