Anti-Social Media? Alister’s class guest blog

Facebook is one of the most prevalent channels for communication, with over 2 billion active monthly users at the moment. After completing the unit of work on Communication: Let's Talk my IH Riga-Satva colleague Alister's 10 to 12-year-old B1 students gave their pennies worth, writing points for and against social media being the best way to communicate. So making the most of the blog again as [...]


Island Project → E-mail Exchange

I got this idea from IH Ljubljana DoS Nick Kiley's excellent presentation 'Project your Teens into Space' on project-based learning at the equally outstanding IH Budapest teacher training day at the start of December, and recently did it with my 13-14 year old intermediate learners here at IH Riga. As my IH Lviv friend Olya [...]

Ukrainian friends e-mail exchange

Learning respect, cultural awareness and real-life skills is important, as is maintaining the mental stability of the one teaching. Setting up an e-mail exchange can do it all. Here's WHY followed by the HOW and WHAT I've set up with my friend Olya Pushchak, YL Coordinator at IH Lviv, Ukraine. WHY? Cognitive dissonance is a [...]

Exam Prep Meets Reality: Dear Mayor Bernabéu…

During my "Making Writing Real" webinar presentation at the SkyEng online conference in March, I discussed five ideas to make writing in lessons a more motivating activity by writing for an external audience (not just the teacher!) and doing useful, everyday tasks. I received several comments in the live chat box that this philosophy is all [...]

Horsham School Search

Practising what I preached at the Skyteach webinar conference a fortnight ago about making writing real... A few weeks ago I took over a class of low-int 10-11 year olds who are pretty errrm...energetic and fidgety (90 minutes last a while!) On our voyage through Islands 5, the topic of school came around, and using the [...]

Would President Trump meet the English language requirements of an international student?

President Trump's speech to mark Black History Month on 1 February was, as with most things he does, quite a spectacle. Historical, institutional, racial...but let's focus on the linguistic show on offer. Learners of English are taught to focus their arguments to the task and master coherence and cohesion, and these two criteria feature in [...]

A Beginner’s Guide to Latvian Culture

The following is a collaborative effort from my C2 teenagers (17-18 years old), as a final project to crown our study of culture over the last few weeks. Each student contributed a section about an aspect of Latvian culture, although we agreed to keep the authors anonymous to prevent comparisons. Language Despite the fact that the only [...]