Usually in my posts I like to share a lesson plan based on a special occasion. This time it's the special occasion that has inspired my post! Last week I was following the 14th Braz TESOL conference from afar, through facebook updates, blog posts and shared images of João de Pessoa.  It really looked like a great event and I felt envious of all the lucky conference goers who were there!  But social media meant that I didn't feel that far away.  I'd like to share a couple of...

Having a children´s library in a school is an asset. Not all large schools nowadays have enough space to offer kids a room especially designed for them. Besides, it´s perfectly understandable that an empty room in a school is turned into a classroom. We didn´t really have the room for the library in Colégio A. Liessin Botafogo but when one has a dream it comes true!  Some years ago our school was partially rebuilt to have a children´s library and Science lab. Since the beginning the idea was to create...

Continuing this series of exercises based on less is more, this month we turn to adverts as a resource for intercultural awareness or should I say one advert in particular. During the Superbowl in February this year, Coca Cola aired a commercial called “It’s Beautiful” which showed people doing typical American leisure activities – surfing, eating fast food, rollerblading with backdrops such as the Grand Canyon. In the meantime, the song “America the Beautiful” plays in the background. You can see it for yourself here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=443Vy3I0gJs At first sight, you might...

Props can be anything used to aid in the telling of a story. The audience needs to be made to believe that the object is representative to some aspect of the story. Tell the story, because the audience wants to believe. In the classroom, props can be used throughout the story or just as a trigger at a turning point in the audience imagination. Props can be chosen to be the focus of vocabulary words, or for teaching actions or expressions. Props could be maps, balls, cookies, a stone,...

[caption id="attachment_894" align="alignleft" width="300"] What can you learn about yourself from your Scrabble words? (garlandcannon - CC BY-SA-2.0)[/caption] Why do we use language?  This has to be one of the questions we ask ourselves as language teachers as it will probably inform our beliefs about how to both teach and learn languages. One of the main reasons we use language is in order to communicate needs and desires, to fill information gaps or to perform some sort of transaction.  It is through this struggle to meet our various needs that...

Na semana de 01 a 05 de abril aconteceu na Inglaterra a 48ª Conferência Anual da Associação Internacional de Professores de Inglês como Língua Estrangeira  - IATEFL.  Com tudo o que vimos e ouvimos ainda ecoando, me pergunto o que podemos fazer para ajudar nossos alunos a aprender mais, mais rápido e com mais eficácia. Por exemplo: “Dar o recado”. Como em qualquer evento internacional, usamos uma língua franca para a comunicação entre participantes falantes de diversas línguas. O interessante para nós, profissionais da área, é que estamos...

“Listening is the Cinderella skill in second language learning”. (Nunan, 2005). For many years, listening skills were not prioritized in language teaching. Teaching methods emphasized productive skills, and the relationship between receptive and productive skills was poorly understood. Richards (2005) provides a clear description of how listening comprehension is achieved by native or non-native listeners. He refers to this listening process as bottom-up and top-down processing. Bottom-up processing refers to the use of incoming data as a source of information about the meaning of a message. From this perspective, the...

In the 70s and early 80s, when functional syllabuses and communicative language teaching gained prominence in ELT, our profession was a relatively gap-fill-free zone. For controlled and semi-controlled practice, students were usually asked to engage in A-B exchanges, role-plays or any other activity types that included some degree of choice, information / context gap, personalization and unpredictability. Even certain types of contextualized oral drills were considered more mainstream than "Fill in the blanks with...

“For children, listening to a story is like opening a door to another world.” We all like listening to a good story! And we know that storytelling teaches children about the world and provides real-world social interaction. Through the storyteller´s words children internalize rhythms and tones  and through observation they are able to learn how to pair gestures and words to bring characters and their actions to life. One of the projects we develop at Colégio A. Liessin is based on storytelling. We work with storytelling with all our kindergarten students,...

O termo collocation já faz parte do cenário de ensino de língua inglesa há um bom tempo. Há na história relatos sobre collocations desde o ano de 1933. Harold Palmer, linguista inglês, é tido como o primeiro a citar tal termo. Na introdução de um de seus livros, ele escreveu: "When a word forms an important element of a 'collocation' [a succession of two or more words that may be best learnt as if it were a single word] the collocations is shown in bold type." Outros autores passaram a...