Archive for September, 2015

Anything that contributes…

On a page about managing participation, the following idea was presented: Students earn points for doing anything that contributes to language acquisition…speaking to you in the target language in and out of class, asking questions, answering questions (even if their answer is wrong), winning in games, engaging in partner work, etc. Well, that sounds reasonable, doesn’t it? […]

Is it worth creating authentic experiences in the classroom?

A topic announced for a language teachers’ chat group has gone out: How can we create authentic class experiences that tap into the 3 modes of communication? Hmm…well, if we stick to the “accepted” definition of “authentic”, that means by native speakers, for native speakers. So I’m not seeing how we can manage that one, […]


On a language teachers’ list, the following comment was posted in a thread about using rewards in the classroom: If we don’t use [activity A], should we offer it as a reward for good behavior, or should we just incorporate it into our weekly/monthly schedule because we know it results in acquisition? And also, what other […]

Slap down those disruptive kids

  After a posting about techniques to handle neurodiversity in the classroom, this response was seen on a teachers’ list: …if the kid speaks English twice during a given class or disrupts me or other students twice in a given class, they have to go to the office with a thick grammar packet. Then I […]

Some methods are more equal

On a language teaching group, a comment was recently posted: My end conclusion:  The success of a method depends a lot on the personality of the teacher and how well it fits the method of choice and allows the teacher to reach the most students.  In other words, whether or not students learn has a lot […]

Translation: Evil or Essential?

I think there are two situations with translation-for-assessment. Asking a kid to translate a sentence or passage in writing, on a test, demonstrates that he can eventually get meaning out of it. I assume that if a kid can produce a correct English sentence that reflects the meaning of the Spanish (or whatever TL) sentence, […]

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