Kate Shepherd reviews three novels with stories that will engage and challenge young adults. The Family with Two Front Doors is based on the author’s real family while The Big Bazoohley is written in the zany style reminiscent of Roald Dahl. Words in Deep Blue is centred around a bookshop where we are drawn into the lives of the two main characters.
Formula for success
According to Leah Davies, good communication depends as much as on actively receiving messages (listening; reading) as on giving messages (talking; writing). Good teachers and schools get both parts of the formula right – and work hard to keep improving.
The importance of home languages
Much has recently been written highlighting the importance of a child’s mother tongue (or “home language”). Susan Stewart, of the International School of London (Surrey), describes the advantages of putting home languages at the centre of a school’s curriculum.
Good listeners become good readers
Leah Davies argues that listening comprehension is vitally important if students are to achieve good reading comprehension. Children who come from homes with minimal language enrichment need to hear new words if they are to become proficient readers.
How to avoid under-performance in IELTs
An increasing number of students in international schools, including those following IB Diploma courses are sitting the IELTS and similar examinations of language competence, but many under-perform. Chris Jay provides some useful guidance on how to avoid pitfalls and achieve success.
The experience of EAL acquisition at a UK boarding school
The growing number of students learning in English is a global phenomenon. At this UK boarding school, the EAL provision is led by the school’s International Student Counsellor, Debbie Taylor, who looks at how Giggleswick School has developed a successful programme of support.
Sing, rhyme (and think!) like an engineer in the Early Years
A range of resources to choose from to suit the needs of the children you teach, which explores the importance of singing, rhyme and rhythm organised around the theme of construction – compiled by Jan Homden.
The importance of mother tongue language in education
A consequence of the ever-increasing popularity of international schools is the growth in the number of children learning in a language other than their first. This can open opportunities for the individual but, as Carolyn Savage explains, continuing to develop the mother tongue is vital to enhance learning.
Collaborative learning project
Over the last three years, the EAL departments at Island School in Hong Kong and the International School of Brussels have been working together on a joint language initiative. With a focus on peer learning and collaboration, the project has brought significant benefit to IB English Language B students at both schools. Chris Jay reports from Hong Kong.
This is the ultimate teaching and learning resource. Students of French, history, literature, media studies, science, biology, the environment . . . . and leadership will be totally absorbed. The winner of the 1987 Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film, is based on the original book by Jean Giono, also reviewed in ITM.
Teaching adult ESL students
When I started teaching adult level ESL classes in 1982, in San Diego, California, I used a grammar textbook, an integrated text for reading, writing and listening, and a supplemental reading text that focused on true stories, writes Sandie Linn
Teachers constantly seek to achieve greater understanding for students while designing effective means to check that understanding. This is particularly true of those teaching students studying in a second language. Krista and Allen McInnis offer focus areas to help teachers of math develop their lessons for English Language Learners. While this is not an exhaustive list, it does provide specific structures and checkpoints to use in math classes.
Language teaching has changed dramatically in recent years and continues to evolve to meet the needs of a student population with an increasingly global outlook. In the first of two articles, Rob Stokoe and Gabrielle Zhou Liang explore some of the key considerations for teachers.
Hemingway described writing as having to “ sit down at a typewriter and bleed,” and for many pupils writing is perceived as a painful exercise. Dave Smith has stumbled into a role that finds him dispelling this perception and making writing ‘cool’ and accessible.
Establishing a profile
Susan Stewart is Head of Languages at the International School of London (Surrey) and believes that students should not be expected to ‘park’ their languages at the door. By developing an academic level of their mother tongue language, in addition to English, at ISL (Surrey), these students are able to keep their future options open.
A shift to student – centred planning
Deep into the second decade of the 21st century there is still discussion about how we can move teaching away from a teacher delivery model, commonly referred to as “traditional” teaching, but globally, there has been significant movement towards a student focused, learning-centred approach in classrooms. Allen McInnis looks at some of the implications for lesson planning.
To find yourself, think for yourself was one of the simple but profound beliefs which guided Socrates. In his view, the discussion of ideas rather than events or the mundane experiences of everyday life enabled man to reach the pinnacle of wisdom. The old boy would be pleased reading about the journey enjoyed by children at Tanglin Trust School and their teacher, Jen Cottam.
Listening Quote of the Month
“It was a sort of power of getting into another man’s life and treating it as if it were his own. And yet all the time he made you feel that your life was your own to guide, and above everything else that you could if you cared make something important out of it.”
Sir Frederic Bartlett of Dr William Rivers
Would the War Poets ever have written their poems without ‘listening’?
‘Quite possibly not’ is a reasonable answer to this question!