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Using Google Docs for Teaching

by Brad Smith I used to use MS Office for so many things but I have found lately that using Google Docs is so much easier for me. For one thing, you can access Google Docs easily from any computer as long as you have Internet access. No more saving your precious classroom slides or […]

Students walking together and chatting

Walk and Talk – An activity to lower communication apprehension

Language learning anxiety For many of my learners, language learning anxiety in the classroom is a big issue. More specifically, many of my students suffer with communication apprehension. This certainly impacts on their behaviour in class. I teach quite a few speaking classes and it can be a real challenge getting the learners to relax […]

Multiple choice examination form with yellow pencil

To Test or not to Test?

by Neil Millington In my younger years as a teacher, I enjoyed the end of the semester for several reasons. First, I studied under the amazing Charles Alderson when doing my MA and I thought it was always a good chance to create a valid and reliable test that would show which of my students […]

Out and about – Motivate your students by sending them out of class!

by Neil Millington I am a teacher at a university in Japan. In a traditional Japanese English teachers classroom it is the role of the teacher to give information and for the students to listen. I am not saying this is the case with every English class, but there are several academic papers that suggest […]

Five Ways to Happiness

by Neil Millington I don’t particularly like to sing in class. Mainly because I’m not that good at it! Each semester I make an exception though for one particular song. It’s a song I learned from Tim Murphey about five or six years ago. I love this song because it is not that difficult to […]

Three practical ways to energize your classroom

I don’t know about you, but over here in Japan the semester is coming to an end and students and teachers alike are starting to feel the pace. There are a lot of fatigued faces on campus as a combination of a long semester, lots of reports and final test week looming is really starting […]

How to encourage your learners to make mistakes

By Neil Millington How often do you share stories with your students about your life? I know some teachers that are really good at telling interesting stories about their travels or adventures. I also know other teachers that would rather keep the student teacher relationship as professional as possible, and prefer to share little about […]

Hugs and Shrugs: Motivation in the Language Classroom

By Neil Millington I have been hesitant to write this blog as I am not sure what kind of reaction I’d get, but I decided to step out of my comfort zone and give it go. It’s about an instance in a class that I taught recently that was totally unplanned and that completely took […]

Making a Difference – Part II

My last blog post was about showing learners how they can make a difference in class using a short narrative. Over the coming weeks I’m writing about teachers I know who are going the extra mile and making a difference in their classes or courses. I am going to start this off with this post […]