General

Materials writing conversations #4: the artwork brief

This is a completely imaginary conversation. No characters in the convo are based on real people – I’m just bored and imagining conversations I might have with editors…

[Researched photo: someone sunbathing]

Comment (design): Can you be more specific? E.g. male/female, etc

[Researched photo: an image to match the phrase ‘I enjoy sunbathing’. A male, perhaps…]

Comment (design): Can you be more specific? Is the speaker male or female?

[[Researched photo: an image to match the phrase ‘I enjoy sunbathing’. I’m not sure if the speaker is male or female. I have requested that the speaker is male, but I don’t know until this is recorded. Maybe the best thing to do is stick with a generic reference to sunbathing, e.g. an image of a bottle of sun cream]

Comment (development editor): Given issues with appropriacy, perhaps a male would be better? (more…)

Materials writing conversations #3: natural, authentic speech

This is a completely imaginary conversation. No characters in the convo are based on real people – I’m just bored and imagining conversations I might have with editors…

Editor: So, do you have any suggestions for the pronunciation stage? We were thinking of, maybe, catenation.

Me: Right. Okay, I can do that. If it appears in the listening text I mean.

Editor: What do you mean?

Me: Well, just… if catenation is a feature of the text. Like, if catenation is actually used by the speakers in the dialogue.

Editor: Well… it will be. If we decide it’s the main pronunciation point for this spread then…

Me: Hang on, can we back up a bit here? Aren’t we doing things backwards? (more…)

Materials writing conversations #2: death, death, death

This is a completely imaginary conversation. No characters in the convo are based on real people – I’m just bored and imagining conversations I might have with editors…

Editor: You’re coming up with some great material for the ‘Extremes’ unit. I love the texts! I do have one issue though…

Me: Okay, which is…?

Editor: I think they need some tweaking

Me: you mean completely rewriting, right?

Editor: No… Yes.

Me: Okay. Which ones?

Editor: Well, there was this one about Mount Everest.

Me: you mean Mount Qomolangma, right? (more…)

Tweaking my young learner teaching

I start my PGCEi next month. I’m really looking forward to having an extra reason to reflect on my classroom practice, overall approach, etc, and delving into research about how children learn and develop.

I’m focusing on primary level learners during the course. I have experience teaching ‘upper’ primary age groups (aged 9-11), but I’d love to learn more about teaching younger primary learners. I felt a bit out of my comfort zone teaching younger learners during the CELTA YL extension course a few years ago. With this in mind, the PGCEi is a perfect opportunity to gain more experience and understanding of YL teaching and child development. (more…)

Materials writing conversations #1: Pork

This is a completely imaginary conversation. No characters in the convo are based on real people – I’m just bored and imagining conversations I might have with editors…

Editor: I think your ideas for the ‘British food’ lesson are great. The listening works well. It’s just…

Me: Just…

Editor: …you mention a fried breakfast. I probably wouldn’t.

Me: Why? Oh… wait. The sausages, right?

Editor: Yeah. And the bacon…

Me: Right.

Editor: …and the black pudding.

Me: Okay… Can’t we just say sausages and bacon, but not mention they are pork? I mean, you can get chicken sausages, turkey bacon… there are veggie or vegan substitutes for both too. I’ve had them. (more…)

Game review: Play for the Planet (ELi Publishing)

Here’s another resource from the giant box I was sent from ELi publishing. I saved reviewing this one until I actually had a good reason to try it out. My teens are studying the natural world / the environment at the moment, so it’s perfect timing…

Play for the Planet is a ‘culture and CLIL’-focused board game. The language goal for the resource is to review and practice environment related vocabulary.

(more…)

Materials writing news and views, August 2019

It’s been a whole month since I’ve punned in a published resource! Crazy.

New releases

Tyson Seburn has a put together a sample unit of an ELT LGBTQIA2 inclusive coursebook unit, based on a normalisation approach. He’s done a great job of producing his own materials – as well as the inclusive approach to content, the overall design and flow of the resource is nice too. This is well worth reading about and hopefully will gain more recognition from publishers. See here for more details.

Express Publishing have released an interesting (?) new title – Brain Friendly Grammar. It’s written by Rachel Paling, a proponent of ‘Neurolanguage Coaching’. I initially thought this approach related to NLP but I’ve been informed otherwise. Anyway, this is a supplementary resource for grammar coaching, to be used alongside traditional grammar books. You can find out more about the book here, although there are no samples provided ☹

Update: I’ve been offered the chance to review this book so watch this space…

(more…)