October 13

Wordy Wednesday #12

I was out with a Spanish friend the other day and she ws laughing about the fact that there were words which I particularly liked, or in this case, didn’t like in Spanish.  I have something against the word “conileño” (which refers to a person from the town of Conil), though I can’t quite put my finger on what it is…

So this week’s question is; what words do you especially like or dislike in the language of the country where you work, or in English for that matter?

October 6

Wordy Wednesday #11

I was having quite an interesting chat with my Upper-Intermediate adult group the other day about what they can hope to achieve in English.  We were talking about fluency and bilingualism, and one of them asked if I thought that bilingual education would produce bilingual students.

What do you think?  If a child attends a mono-cultural, bilingual school, will they become bilingual?

September 29

Wordy Wednesday #10

Today I’m exercising my right to work in a job which I truly enjoy.

There’s a general strike happening across Spain today which the trade unions have been planning for the last four months or so.  Most people have cooled off since the initial “We hate the government!  It’s all their fault!  Let’s strike!” – meaning that in fact it’s not a general strike at all, and a fair number of businesses are opening, though with “servicios minimos”.

Unfortunately, there are only minimum services running on public transport which makes it difficult for me to get to work, or rather get home afterwards. But, whilst I can be there, I will be.

So, without wanting to get too caught up in politics, today’s question is : If your school was open during a general strike, would you go to work, or not?

September 22

Wordy Wednesday #9

I was watching quite a cynical comedy sketch about education in which Father Guido Sarducci says that what university students remember after four years could be taught in five minutes.  For language learning, in this case Spanish, he said that all you need to know (or rather, all you would remember) is:

¿Cómo está usted?              – How are you?

Muy bien.                               – Fine.

All joking aside, what do you think is the most important thing that you’ll teach your students?

September 15

Wordy Wednesday #8

OK, so it’s the wrong time of the year to be asking this question, but what do you think is one reason for or against testing?

I think frequent, simple tests are a good way of reminding students why they are there, as a means of giving hard proof that they ARE learning.  Students shouldn’t worry about these tests – they shouldn’t need to if they have been taught well and have been paying attention in classes – but I do think that it’s important for them to get feedback on the tests, not just a mark but a helping hand if they’re finidng something difficult.