materials writing

Materials writing news and views, September 2019

September already? It’ll soon be Xmas…

New releases

Deborah Hobbs (author) mentioned the release of ‘Open World’ (CUP). This is from the Cambridge English website:

Open World is an exciting new course from Cambridge which takes you further. Embark on a journey beyond the traditional boundaries between exam preparation and real-world language.

The book looks a bit Life-y based on that front cover.

Paul Ashe announced the release of New Hello! for the market in Egypt. If you’re interested about the context that this book will be used in then here’s a summary of ELT in Egypt from the British Council.

There are inspection copies out for C21 from Garnet Education. If I manage to get a copy I’ll review it. There’s an uber-positive review on their site about it, which was published in the EL Gazette.

Every publisher seems to be marketing books as developing ‘21st Century Skills’ these days. I’ve just googled a list of core ‘21st Century Skills’… eeek. I’m a crap leader, fairly unproductive, sometimes inflexible and not that creative. Send me the book Garnet, I can learn from it…

Emily Bryson has just written ’50 Ways to Teach Life Skills’ for Wayzgoose Press. (more…)

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…)

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…)

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…)

Materials writing news and views, July 2019

Sorry, been busy!

Here’s some latest news with a Pearson-heavy start!

 

Pearson to phase out print textbooks

The big news announced yesterday (BBC article here).

In the pipeline…

Pearson are working on the higher levels (Int+) of Startup. Promo vid:

Expect some puns in the Level 8 book. They’ve signed off on my decision to name a librarian ‘Paige Turner’.

(more…)

Materials writing news and views, May 2019

Some news from this month…

New materials

Nice post on LinkedIn the other day from Kate Foufouti. A new resource from Macmillan.

Macmillan have also been promoting a new Pre-primary series called Mimi’s Wheel – series editor is Carol Read I think. Follow that link for samples (note, the Mimi puppet looks a bit freaky).

Lexical Lab have been blogging again about Outcomes Beginner, explaining a bit about the syllabus and approach. It’s interesting to hear how the writers tried to recycle vocabulary from earlier units throughout the book – a rarity in coursebooks.

Haven’t seen many other promo posts for materials this month tbh…

Update on Peachey Publications

I’m sure many of us have been on the mailing list for Peachey Publications, the new publishing company from Nik Peachey (mentioned in an earlier update). Well, it’s officially happened. You can have your work published through Nik, getting some support with editing and promotion, with profits shared proportionately. Nik has decided to make this a subscription service for writers ($35 a month). That rules me out – the last e-book I wrote hasn’t made much more than that in total!

(more…)

Lesson Share Winner!

I don’t often win things – just like the football team I support! However, I was lucky enough to be the Onestopenglish Lesson Share winner for February. Woohoo! Check out the competition here.

What was the lesson?

Resources based on my own short story called ‘Instant Coffee’. The resources should last around 2.5 hours of class time. They follow a text-driven approach (see my lesson here). B2 Level +.

The short story in 10 words…

Popular social media foodographer gets ‘eye camera implant’. It malfunctions.

I was really chuffed that Onestopenglish chose to edit and share my lesson. Some reasons why… (more…)