Results tagged “esol”
Though the term information superhighway seems to have been consigned to history, the internet, in many ways, resembles a demolition derby more than a sleek road. Every year I clear out the dead links from our ESL links database; even though we add a new link most days, we now how forty fewer links than we did at the start of the year.
Interactive whiteboards, heralded as a breakthrough in teaching, have come under fire as possible risks to eyesight. While the claims that TV and computer screens would ruin people's eyesight have largely not been shown to be the case, it is possible that there is a risk here.
Sandy MacManus of the popular TEFLTrade blog recently wrote to IATEFL, the International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language, asking them what they were doing to protect ESL teachers in the UK.
A few years ago, many ESL bloggers were claiming that blogging was going to change the face of ESL on the web. I always thought that these claims were excessive; many bloggers were coming into IT without many technical skills and were evangelical about what they could do without understanding the ideas behind Web 2.0 or what was happening on the web already.
Bill Rammell, the minister for lifelong learning, further and higher education, argues that the withdrawal of funding for asylum seekers over the age of 19 is fair because almost 80% of claims are settled in eight weeks. He says that most reasonable people would support this, especially as over half the claims are unsuccessful.
The TEFL Blacklist has had its version of the OSCARS for the worst in the ESL/EFL world. It's an interesting and idiosyncratic selection, with some obvious choices of old friends and some quirky and unexpected choices.
There is a lot of debate at the moment on whether the Trinity College London TEFL (TESOL) Certificate courses offered by Windsor TEFL are accredited.
We are adding a new section to the site that will be text-based, with texts and comprehension exercises. It is new, so it is still very small, but we will be adding to it on a regular basis. Please free to contact us to make suggestions or correct any mistakes.
The Research Discovery Network have just launched a tutorial for ESOL students on using the internet that can be accessed freely by anyone interested. It's meant to give an overview of what the net is, how they can access it, how it can benefit them, etc.
Tesol Law have published a draft discussion of a code of ethics, together with a discussion on the thinking behind it. It's not a new idea- the concept has been bandied around before. Most of the code seems pretty straightforward and sensible to me, but the enforceability of it is a different question. Robert J. Dickey, in his discussion, recognises that this could be 'a blessing or a curse' as it doesn't come from a recognised body.
The new test for those wishing to become British citizens has been introduced. You buy a £9.99 book and take a £34 computer-based test, which seems a little steep for something with just 24 questions. However,you can take it as many times as necessary, so centres will be falling over themselves to accept your cash. The BBC has some unofficial questions based on their reading of the book. I managed a sterling 50% (you need 75% to pass). One of the ones I got right was a guess. I wasn't sure what I should do to be British- basically, whether I should obey the laws, participate in a culture or be a part of a European democracy. I guessed the first, assuming that's what the politicians behind this would want me to say and, sadly, was right.
Unable to sleep, I spent some time reading through British teachers' blogs last night and was reminded of just what dire straits some areas of education in the UK are in. Two in particular stood out, for different reasons. One, a blog dedicated to exposing the worse side of the ESL profession in the UK, gave details of the worst job it had seen advertised this year, while the other documented the travails of a highly dedicated teacher who has finally resigned and decided to quit the profession.
Just before I left Cambodia, I attended the CamTESOL conference in Phnom Penh, where I gave a paper on setting-up ILT. CamTESOL was set up to organise an annual conference on ELT in Cambodia, bringing ESL teachers from all over the country for the two-day event.
I am taking lessons in Khmer. Twice a week I go for my classes in a classroom that is literally in the shadow of the Toul Sleng genocide museum, also known as S-21, the school turned into a notorious prison where thousands were tortured before being executed in Choeung Ek, the Killing Fields of the Democratic Kampuchea regime of Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge.
The Department for Education and Skills' materials for the ESOL Adult Core Curriculum are a depressing example of how not to do something. I have been given the materials for Levels 1 & 2. My Level 1 students last year were able to take the UCLES Cambridge First Certificate exam. This year where I am currently working, the exam is to be replaced by the Level 1 exam from Edexcel.
The UK government has been plugging its ESOL curriculum for some time and the materials designed to accompany it are coming through now, and are even worse than I had imagined. Unit 1 of the Level 1 course, which is not beginner level, but high intermediate, starts with a unit on 'Life in the UK'.
I was looking at the Edexcel website to see some information about their ESOL exams, as it seems that the UCLES exams have fallen out of favour with government, which will not be popular with students as UCLES are the gold standard for many. Edexcel have been in the news on many occasion for mistakes in exams and other administrative errors, so the title of this entry, which comes from the description of ESOL (Skills for Life) Entry level, doesn't inspire much confidence. The Writing Test for Level 2 is confusing- question 2c comes before 2b and doesn't have any handwritten text to correct, though it instructs studentsto find five mistakes in the missing text. There is something deliciously ironic in asking students to proof read the missing text in a question in the wrong order.