Insights Into TEFL

Student book discussion group
By Ken Smith - Kaohsiung, TaiwanEvery Tuesday night ("Tuesday's with Mr.Smith"?) at the college I teach at in southern Taiwan a group of students called "Book Travelers" gets together for a group discussion about books. It is based on Mark Furr's work with Reading Circles, but I've also added elements from the Robin Williams film "Dead Poet's Society". Although we don't use graded readers with
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Getting students excited about books
By Warren Ediger - California, USA "One of my early mentors told me that leadership is "knowing what needs to be done, knowing why that is important, and knowing how to bring the appropriate resources to bear on the situation at hand."Helping my adult ESL students in the classroom and online tutoring students (mostly professionals) understand "why" has paid rich dividends.Trelease, Krashen, and
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Educational Disengagement: Undermining Academic Quality at a Chinese University
By Dick Tibbets - University of Macau, Macau, ChinaThis is a fascinating study and so much rings true that I go along with all that I've managed to read so far.On the Chinese side there is the view of education as the ingesting of information and lack of emphasis on the synthesis of information to create and advance. There is the xenophobia that assists the belief that one can teach a neutral
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The Common European Framework for testing and teaching
By Jennifer WallaceAnhui Gongye Daxue, Ma'anshan, ChinaLots of us are trying to develop tests appropriate for the situations we're teaching in. One document I'd recommend, because I've found it enormously helpful, is the Council of Europe Frameowrk, which is on the Internet, as a downloadable pdf file (for which you need to have Adobe Acrobat Reader on your machine). I like the document for
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On testing oral English
By GeorgeTo accurately test my students, I give them oral exams which are recorded on tape. These exams have two parts. The first part is Q&A covering things we have covered in class. They almost always have a memorized response for the basic questions. I tend to ignore these. I focus on their responses to the followup questions. For example, I've told them that we might discuss their
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A speaking test examiner teaches speaking
By Jennifer Wallace - Anhui Gongye Daxue, Ma?anshan City, Anhui Province, ChinaWhen I came to teach here, although I?d been a speaking test examiner for more than 10 years (for UCLES exams) I?d actually never had to set an oral English exam before. I?d taught always in situations where the students were either taking no exam or were working towards an external exam. So if I did have to set
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Extensive reading for students in intensive English programs
By Erlyn Baack - ITESM, Campus Queretaro, MexicoHere are two of my recommendations, both short essays, four pages and three pages.For many years, I've used TWO essays for every advanced composition class I've taught (first semester, university level). I cannot remember a time when I haven't used them, actually. My classes are for Mexican students who are supposed to have 550 although some have
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What can Scrabble teach?
By Dick Tibbetts - Macau University, Macau, ChinaIt might be worth consider- ing what Scrabble can teach and what Scrabblers can learn.Players can learn vocabulary from their peers and peers have to define words when challenged. I'd ban dictionaries for finding words and use something reputable like the advanced learners dic. as an authority for judging.Scrabble games with NS are used to aid
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