Author Archive

Phrase of the day: It’s alright for some!

This week, a friend of mine in France sent me a message via Facebook asking if I'd got a copy of a new box set that collects together all the LPs by The Pretty Things, one of my very favourite…

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Phrasal verbs: myths and realities

Last year I was lucky enough to attend the PASE conference in Warsaw, where I saw a locally based teacher, Jonathan Marks, give a thought-provoking talk on phrasal verbs. Having long believed that this is one area of the language…

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Phrase of the day: would’ve thought

Last Wednesday evening, I took a train from Preston back home to London. As we were nearing Euston station, I left my seat and went to wait near the door. A mother and her teenage daughter were already there, and…

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Yet more thoughts on teaching grammar

I'm now four weeks into the Focus on Grammar course I'm teaching at International House, London, which means only two more weeks to go. It's been a strange and mostly fairly lovely experience, made much easier by having some really…

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Chunk of the day: the bottom line

In class yesterday, we looked at some vocabulary for describing different roles and duties people have at work. Students then went on to discuss which they had themselves, how good they felt they were at them - and which other…

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Further thoughts on teaching grammar

Last week, I posted up a few thoughts I'd had on starting to teach (at IH London) a part-time, six-week evening course called Focus on Grammar. Following the second lesson with my lovely class last Thursday night, here are a…

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Some reflections on the universal panacea

Last week I started teaching a six-week evening course at International House, London. For someone with such a keen interest in lexically-oriented teaching, the decision to go for the Focus on Grammar option may seem perverse, but I've long maintained…

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